A number of workshops will be offered throughout the academic year to provide an overview of the interviewing process, including: what to expect during interviews, how to prepare, and a discussion of additional resources to assist in your job search preparation. Dates and times of interview techniques workshops can be found on the Career Services website.
Mock interviews are available to discuss and practice the interview process. Students will gain an understanding of what is expected of them as well as the kinds of questions that they should expect from an interviewer. Mock interviews are available with and without video recording, although recording is recommended. To make an appointment for a practice interview, please call:
|College of Arts & Sciences ||(215) 898-7529|
|Engineering & Wharton||(215) 898-7533|
|Nursing ||(215) 898-4381|
GRADUATE STUDENTS (Master's and Ph.D. students)
|Arts & Sciences, Business (doctoral), Communication, Design, Engineering (doctoral), Medicine||(215) 898-7530|
|Education, Nursing, Social Policy & Practice||(215) 898-4381|
|Arts & Sciences, Biomedical (BPP), Engineering ||(215) 898-7530|
Need to brush up on your interviewing skills for an upcoming interview? InterviewStream is the leading practice interview system that allows job seekers the opportunity to see and hear themselves online. Using a webcam, individuals can simulate job interviews by responding to pre-recorded interview questions and practice both verbal and non-verbal communication skills. InterviewStream allows you to customize your own interview by choosing from thousands of questions in a wide variety of industries and job functions. Afterwards, all interviews are immediately accessible online for self-review, or can be sent to career counselors, mentors, or others from whom you would like feedback. Current students and Penn alums can access InterviewStream here. If you would like more information, check out this Overview of InterviewStream.
- Skype Interviews: One job hunter's experience being interviewed via Skype
- Career Services's Skype Interview Tips Worksheet
- Video: How to Look Good for a Skype Interview
Employers tell us that when interviews go wrong, they go wrong (typically) for these reasons:
- The student didn't really know why s/he applied for the position and how it fits into her/his career path. Think through this beforehand and be able to articulate it.
- The student is confused about what the organization does. Be sure to take the time to learn what they do and be able to discuss it.
- The student is not enthusiastic. It's OK to smile and be excited! You set the tone for the interview, so demonstrate your enthusiasm!
Benefits of Informational Interviews
An informational interview is an opportunity to gather in-depth information about career fields and positions that interest you, for instance: traits that fit well in a certain position, rewarding aspects of a particular job, opportunities for advancement, academic training requirements, a typical day in this field or position, hiring trends, etc. The more you about an industry and particular roles, the easier it will be to decide if that might be the right path for you. Students and alumni regularly report that informational interviews are an exceptionally useful component in their career development. Informational interviews will not only enrich your understanding of various career fields, but will also broaden your network of professional contacts.
How to Ask for an Informational Interview
When approaching a contact for an informational interview, start by sending a brief email explaining how you found their contact information, that you are interested in learning more about their field and were hoping you could set up a time to speak about their career path. Be sure to also briefly state how you became interested in industry and be clear about your goals for the meeting. For a more detailed approach, view our sample email.
Interview Guidelines/Interview Don'ts
- Start by browsing QuakerNet, the Penn Alumni database you can use to connect and speak with Penn alumni about career-related questions. The benefit of QuakerNet is that Penn alumni will be an approachable and friendly audience.
- Make your appointment with a potential contact 2 or 3 weeks in advance. Be flexible and have a variety of times you can be available. If you are not able to meet with the individual in person, try to schedule a convenient time to speak on the phone. Many advisors are also happy to offer advice via e-mail.
- Respect the advisor's time - don't wear out your welcome. The average time for an information interview is about 30 minutes. Be familiar with the industry and organization before your meeting. Read relevant trade journals to find out what is going on in the industry.
- Arrive on time. If you know you will be late, call and let the individual know.
- Come prepared with questions. This will help you organize your thoughts on what you want to learn.
- Do NOT ask for a job. You can be clear that you are looking by asking for general advice about the best places to look or how to best market yourself.
- Be prepared to answer questions concerning your interests, values, skills and where you would like to use them. You may want to bring a copy of your resume but only provide it if asked.
- It is a good idea to ask the person you interview for referrals to others who might be able to provide valuable information on the career(s) that you are considering.
- Be sure to send a thank you note within 24 hours following the interview. This can be either via email or hand written but most people greatly appreciate a hand written note.
- Penn Career Services Vimeo Homepage
- SEAS Alumni Interview Tips (embed)
- Interviewing-related blog posts on Penn & Beyond
Being successful in your career is not necessarily specific to your program of study or the grades you earn. Employers from a wide variety of industries, hiring for all different kinds of jobs, cite many different qualities that help employees thrive. To guide students in their career next steps, Career Services has developed a series of career competencies to help all candidates - undergraduates through postdoctoral fellows - identify areas of strength and areas for growth for productive, lifelong career development. View some sample questions related to the Penn7 Competencies that could be asked in an interview and possible responses one can answer in our Career Competencies Interviewing Guide.
Logins and passwords for these resources are available on our online subscriptions page.
GoinGlobal Career and Employment Resources include world-wide job openings, internship listings, industry profiles and country-specific career information. More than 30,000 pages of constantly-updated content is included on topics such as: work permit/visa regulations, resume writing guidelines and examples, employment trends, salary ranges, networking groups, cultural/interviewing advice, corporate profiles and worldwide job listings plus much more!
Job Choices - An official publication of NACE, the National Association of Colleges & Employers. Three different online magazines available: Business & Liberal Arts; Science, Engineering & Technology; and Diversity.
Vault Career Insider - Vault's former Online Career Library is new and improved! Enter your Penn email address under the "New to Career Insider?" heading to create your own personalizable account. NOTE: If you are logging in for the first time, please enter your email address on the right side of the page under "New to Career Insider?" to create a new account.
Wetfeet Insider Guides - Access to WetFeet guides is made possible by a grant from Goldman Sachs.
NOTE: Wetfeet now requires you to enter a valid Penn e-mail address to download their guides. Personal accounts such as Gmail or Hotmail will prevent downloads.
Interview Dress Resources
WAY is a clothing referral agency who provides both men and women in need free professional clothing to prepare for employment and interviewing purposes. Our clothing referral appointments are exclusive to our community partners on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11-3
Please view our website for more information: