Thursday, October 25 marked PUC’s workshop with Marcie Hronis, self-proclaimed public-speaking enthusiast and former Miss America contestant trainer. In just over an hour, Hronis explained the keys to successful conversations with potential employers, providing tips, tricks, and real life examples of how to excel in the arena of corporate interviewing.
In her presentation, titled, “Interview Training: How to Stand out From the Rest,” Hronis detailed the steps of preparation needed to swing any discussion in the interviewee’s favor. She began by highlighting the importance of creating what she termed an “awesome list.”
“How do you make any employer fall in love with you?” she asked. “You put together ten amazing, unique things about yourself, and weave them into the interview. The goal is to be able to answer any question using at least one of the things on your list.”
Hronis emphasized these qualities need not be related to your academic career or workplace goals.
“It can be anything that makes you stand out, whether it is something special about your family heritage, a charity you’re involved in, or volunteer work.”
In addition to creating an “awesome list,” Hronis encouraged students to come up with three words that best described their character. She also urged participants in the workshop to avoid the most common qualities noted, such as “passionate, driven, and hardworking.”
“You may be all those things, and that is great. But so is everyone else. Do some digging in a thesaurus, and find terms that are unique and specific to your personality,” she explained. “And once you have chosen your words, find a way to make them match up with the stories on your awesome list.”
Hronis then detailed the importance of developing an elevator pitch, or a ten second explanation of who you are and your areas of talent. She also touched on the importance of conducting background research about the company you are interviewing for and ended with her personal secrets to landing any interview.
“It’s so simple it seems crazy,” Hronis admitted, “But it works every time. Before you begin, compliment your interviewer’s office. Starting with this breaks down barriers and shows you will be a friendly, easy-going addition to their workplace. And when you leave, make sure you establish your next point of contact. Never end an interview without knowing when you and your interviewer will speak next.”
Hronis’ workshop is just one of the many opportunities for career preparation PUC offers. In addition to the recent grad school fair, the Career and Counseling Center (CCC) has organized internship fairs in the past with the goal of connecting students to potential employers and institutions for professional development.
Events and workshops offered by the CCC and the Teaching and Learning Center (TLC) on campus include mock interviews, resume workshops, and career assessments such as the Strong Interest Inventory, 16PF, and other values, skills, and personality evaluations.
Students interested in attending any of PUC’s workshops or seminars are encouraged to do so throughout the quarter. The CCC’s website, puc.edu/counseling-center, provides helpful information regarding upcoming fairs. For more information about last year’s internship fair, check out this story about last year’s internship fair.