The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


The secret to conquering any interview

Going in for an interview can be a terrifying experience.

Besides worrying about wearing the right shoes or showing up late, one of the biggest challenges is answering the employer’s questions.

But, how can someone prepare for that when he or she has no idea what this person will throw their way in the first place?

A couple career counselors at SMU think the S.T.A.R. Technique is the secret weapon everyone could use to turn a daunting interview into a time to shine.

“It can be really stress inducing when you’re asked ‘Tell me about a time’ and you panic,” Alison Dupuis, a Career Coach in the Hegi Family Career Center, said . “The S.T.A.R. technique really helps students find examples that put them in a positive light.”

The Hegi Family Career Development Center presented “Interview for Success” Tuesday afternoon in the Hughes-Trigg Promenades A and B. About 35 students attended the 5 p.m.workshop that mainly focused on how to field tough questions about oneself using the S.T.A.R. technique.

Lisa Tran, another Career Coach at SMU, began by breaking down the meaning of S.T.A.R. It stands for situation, task, action and result. So, when asked to give an example of any experience, the interviewee should begin with the situation, note the task they faced, mention the action they took and finish with the final result.

“This technique will keep you from rambling on or making your answers too short,” Dupuis said .

Freshman business major, Quyen Tong, said she has already been on a couple interviews, but did not like the way they played out.

“I felt like they weren’t very good,” Tong said . “I came here to improve myself and my interviewing skills so I can be more prepared in the future.”

Besides some of the “dos and don’ts” she took note of, the S.T.A.R technique made the most sense to her.

“It’s a really good, logical way to think out your answers,” she said.

Magda Cruz, a freshman at SMU, said she has never been through an extensive interview and came to this workshop to learn how she can be prepared for the future. Even though she came a little late, the S.T.A.R. technique is what made a lasting impression on her.

“I learned how to make questions that are meant to find your weakness turn into what portrays you in a good light,” Cruz said .

Austin Speaker, a student worker with the Career Center, said that another piece of advice he would give is to actually research the company before the interview. This includes knowing the history of the company, your interviewer and the job’s description.

“So many people don’t do that and it just doesn’t go over well,” Speaker said . “It shows.”

The Hegi Family Career and Development Center hosts “Career Express” every Wednesday from 2p.m. to 4 p.m. and Thursday 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for any student wanting free career consulting without an appointment. 

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