It’s not a job interview

If you arrive precisely on time at my brother-in-law’s house for a dinner party, he’ll admonish you with the phrase,  “It’s not a job interview!”  He’s usually not prepared for on-time arrivals.  After all, a dinner party is an informal affair. No need to operate with down-to-the-minute precision.

College interviews aren’t job interviews, either, but for a very different reason.

You should absolutely be on time, maybe even five minutes early, to a college interview. But unlike job interviews, you shouldn’t expect to be asked prepared questions where your only goal is to give the right answer. Instead, your college interviewer is really evaluating whether you can have an engaging, mature, relaxed conversation with an adult.

Don’t be nervous. Relax and have a nice chat. Yes, you should expect to be asked why you want to attend this college, what you might like to study, and whether or not you have any questions. But as long as your answers show that you’re sincerely interested in the school and you aren’t afraid to discuss that interest with an adult, you’ll do just fine.

It’s not a job interview. College interviews should really be called “college conversations.”