Each semester, Career Life Education 10 students participate in mock job interviews as a way of gaining experience for the future. Each student is expected to write a resume and cover letter and is encouraged to dress formally for the occasion. Ms. Adrienne Chappell organizes the event and enlists the help of multiple members of the community, such as friends and family of teachers at the school. Interviewers work in business, sports, or education.
Chappell thinks that doing this interview process is important for students to gain experience for any future jobs. “It gives them as much as a real-life experience as possible because they’re being interviewed by somebody from the community. It’s not someone that they’re already familiar and comfortable with. It allows them the opportunity to feel the sense of nervousness before an interview like most people get, and then they get to practice running through as realistic of an interview as possible.
This process allows students to practice working through the nerves and enables them to give a good answer in an interview, and to practice selling their skills to an interviewer. “The process of interviewing for a job can be challenging and sometimes frustrating when you don’t hear back or get a job. It’s important to ask for feedback on your interview skills so that you can always be improving when you go out the next time. Don’t give up!” said Chappell.
“It allowed us to gain some practice with interviews before we go into more jobs and getting a solid career. I’m really thankful we did this, because I like to know how I can improve my chances of getting hired,” said CLE 10 student, Veronica Hyvarinen. “I learned more, I got practice on the interviews so when comes the time I’ll be getting a job, I’ll be better rehearsed.” Being prepared for an interview is very important, and is something that interviewers look for when hiring.
Hyvarinen really appreciated the feedback from her peers. “Next time I do an interview I have to remember to make eye contact. I was afraid I was going to forget everything, but next time I’ll know to calm down and take deep breathes,” said Hyvarinen.
For many students, being nervous can affect an interview, and it is important to relax and take deep breaths. “I was so nervous going into the interview, since I am not an English speaker, and it is hard for me to speak English,” said another CLE 10 student, Luka Chen. He was interviewed by Doug McLean, who is a district co-ordinator for career programs.
“This is important for young students because a lot of them are looking for jobs at the grade 10 level. Many people are looking to hire in the Christmas season or into the summer time for the work or volunteer experience,” explained McLean. “My advice to those doing interviews is to relax. The relaxation comes from prep work, just making sure that you do a little bit of research,’” said McLean. Pretty soon, real job interviews are on the horizon, and doing this process with CLE 10 is well worth the experience.