Combine speed dating with valuable interview practice and you get the Interview Blitz, an event that was held by Central’s Principles of Marketing class aimed to give students an opportunity to learn how to interview well.
Andy Campbell, assistant professor of business management, came up with the idea for the event, which is based off a speed dating model. During each round of interviewing, students received three minutes of interview time with a representative from a company and then one minute of feedback from the interviewer. With this system, students were able to get at least six interviews over the course of the event.
“Experience is an essential part of learning and growing,” says Campbell, “and this was a great chance for students to get a lot of professional feedback in a low-risk setting.”
The students that participated in the event gained valuable experience in less than 30 minutes.
“The blitz was a very unique way to get unthreatening practice for interviews,” says Sean Coen, a senior business management major. “The fast-paced nature didn’t allow us to get too rattled about a stupid response to a question, and it allowed us to hear a variety of questions that will come up in an interview. I now feel a lot more confident going into interviews.”
“The students approached the opportunity in a very professional manner and were receptive to feedback,” adds Campbell. “Quite a few of the interviewers mentioned that they thought the students came across as more polished during the last couple of interviews in the session.”
In addition to giving students opportunities to hone their interviewing skills, the Interview Blitz gave representatives from local companies a chance to meet with students who could be applying for jobs or internships in the future. Human resources representatives from Aerotek, Brownell’s, Vermeer Corporation, Northwestern Mutual Financial Network, Vision Financial and Central College helped interview students.
“Recruiters were able to see some of Central’s future employment talent during the event,” says Pat Kitzman, director of the Career Center. “In that respect, the event was truly a win-win.”
“It was refreshing to be able to practice interview questions with a real-world employee,” junior business management major Cody Gullett says, reflecting on the event. “I would definitely recommend it to anyone, and I will be attending again in the future.”