If you’re in trade school, you may think the job hunt is challenging. But if you know what to expect and how to prepare, it can be an exciting experience. This blog shares interview tips for trade school students and gives you some insight into what employers are looking for when they speak with candidates with technical training.
Define Your Professional Goals
You need to know where you want to go. Before you can get there, you need to define what success looks like for you. Define your professional goals and consider how they align with the school’s mission and values.
Does money define your goals? Or are they defined by something else (education, job satisfaction, etc.)? If it’s the latter one, then that school would be a good fit for you because it offers valuable education in its programs and will provide opportunities beyond just getting a job after graduation.
By knowing what matters most to YOU and being clear about it, you’ll be able to choose an institution whose program matches your needs rather than theirs!
Do Your Homework
The internet is rife with information on companies, so take advantage of it. Find out what they do, their competitors, and what sets them apart. Researching a company will help you figure out if you want to work for them and also give you an idea of the interview process. This can be a great way to prepare for your first trade school interview!
Know Your Strengths & Weaknesses
As a student, knowing what you are good at and what you need to work on is essential. Using your strengths to your advantage is crucial while working on your weaknesses helps improve them. For example, if one of your strengths is being able to multitask and work in a fast-paced environment, then taking on multiple projects at once would be an ideal opportunity for you. On the other hand, if working alone and focusing deeply requires more time than others can give, finding a way around this could help increase productivity in the workplace.
- Practice, practice, practice. It’s not enough to just read over your interview answers before the big day—you need to get comfortable answering these questions aloud. Find someone you trust and try answering some of the more common interview questions (like “Tell me about yourself” or “What are your strengths and weaknesses?”) while they listen.
- Practice in front of a mirror. It might be awkward at first, but this can help you see what kinds of facial expressions you make when discussing specific topics.
- Create a video recording showing all sides of your face and what kind of body language comes naturally when answering questions about yourself or the job you’re applying for. You’ll want to know if it’s easy for others to tell if other emotions are running through your mind—like anger or sadness—and sometimes it’s easier than you think!
According to Universal Technical Institute, “Since 1969, MIAT College of Technology has trained thousands of students to pursue exciting technical careers. As a result, MIAT provides career-focused training developed with industry leaders, so you can get the skills employers look for.”
There are many things to think about if you want to ace your interview. But remember: the most important thing is to be yourself! The interviewer wants to know what kind of person they’re hiring, so don’t try too hard. Just relax, be honest and tell them who you are—and then let the rest happen naturally.