8 Tips for Successful University/ Scholarship Interview

Does preparing for a University/ Scholarship interview makes you stressful? Don’t be afraid. Many students get anxious because their future and career aspiration lies in one particular interview. The students should understand that receiving an interview call for university/ scholarship programme is an accomplishment in itself since they made it till here after competing with hundreds other. Hence, the battle is half won.

An interview is a formal interaction between an interviewer and an interviewee where questions are asked in order to find a suitable candidate for a job or right student for a course or scholarship grant.

Here are few interview tips for the students to follow before setting off on a new journey:

1. Advance Preparation

It is advisable to be well prepared before going for a university or a scholarship interview. Make sure to read about the background of the university/scholarship provider company, the name of the sponsors, their accomplishments and the mission statement for better understanding. Don’t forget to read the current affairs and newspapers for an extra dose of knowledge. Examine the scholarship application form closely including the essay question choices, which can give details about the specifications they are looking for in a student. Also, make a note of the academic documents or resume copies which are to be carried along for the interview.

2. Arrange for a Mock Interview

Appearing for international scholarships can be nerve-racking. Since practice makes ones perfect, so it is better to rehearse before appearing for the final interview. Prepare a list of frequently asked questions and ask a trusted friend or a family member to act as an interviewer. Some of the frequently asked scholarship interview questions are:

  • Tell us something about yourself?
  • What are your professional goals after completing university?
  • Why do you deserve this scholarship?
  • Which is your favorite subject? ( speak about the subject of interest )
  • Who is your role model? ( keep few names ready and reasons for the same)

This mock interview will help the students in overcoming their fears and nervousness during university scholarship interviews and for more help, a student might wish to consult a professional mentor.

3. Dress Appropriately

The first impression can be made with one’s appearance. Some university interviews might ask the interviewee to dress in a similar way. So, before selecting your attire to make sure to read the dress code guidelines. In case there is no dress the go for formal wear:

  • Men’s formal wear includes long sleeves light colored shirt, a tie, blazer/business suit, pants, mid-calf socks, and polished formal shoes.
  • Girls formal wear includes a business suit or a skirt suit, with a collared shirt, stockings or length of the skirt should be below the knees and black closed toe shoes. Indian girls can also opt for a formal suit with dupatta for the interview.

Along with the dress, make a point to cut the nails properly and keep them clean. The hair should be combed and styled properly. The overall look should be presentable and professional.

4. Be on time

Being late for an interview will give a negative impression to the interviewer. This will reflect the students non-seriousness toward the scholarship being offered. This can be avoided by planning the day in advance like:

  • A visit to the venue one day before will give an idea about the distance and total travel time.
  • Set multiple alarms so you don’t get any option to wake up late.
  • Keep all the documents handy. Do not leave it for last minute

The prior planning can help the students to reach at least 15 minutes before the interview starts.If there is some last minute emergency then inform the concerned person.

5. Be confident and calm

Appearing for university/ scholarship interview can make students stressful. But this should not reflect on their faces. Any professional interview guide or mentor will always give advice to their students to stay calm and confident during the interview process.The student’s confidence can be judged from his/ her posture, firm handshake and maintaining constant eye contact while answering the questions.

6. Know your subject well

As advised before it is good to come prepared with all the facts. Whether you are facing a university interview or for a scholarship aid interview, it is vital for the interviewee to read and research well about the course/ subject applying for. Scholarship interviewer will judge a student’s subject knowledge before reaching any final decision. This is the best time for any student to impress the interviewer because a well-read and informed student will be the deserved one for scholarship or university admission.

7. Be Honest and Genuine

At no point during the interview, the interviewer should feel that a student is fake or insincere. Interviewers are skilled and experienced people, they can easily judge the Personality of the interviewee. So, students should give honest replies and not lie about their academics or achievements. Few pointers to consider:

  1. Answer the questions slowly and clearly.
  2. Take time to think before speaking
  3. It is okay to say no to a question, you are not aware of rather than giving an invalid or a wrong answer.
  4. Avoid being overconfident.

8. Come prepared with a list of questions

Every student will have certain queries regarding the university or scholarship programme. It is absolutely normal to ask doubts from the Interviewer.This will showcase the interviewee’s interest and zeal for the award and future career goal.

Hence, this interview anxiety and nervousness can be handled patiently by students if they follow the above tips. The interview process makes a student confident and this way they will be able to overcome their discomfort and regular practice will help them in achieving their future aspirations. Students can consult a professional mentor who can be make them more optimist and sharp.