Features, Living

How to NOT Bomb Your Internship Interview.

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[Should be fairly easy: I did it.]   By Sijal Rehmane   It’s intern-hiring season at the SHE office, meaning we have had many a hopeful intern-prospective prancing through our office over the past couple of weeks. Getting interviewed can be a harrowing experience for anyone, especially if the position is one that is perceived to be a glitzy and fabulous one, such as for a writing internship at the fabulous South Asian fashion and lifestyle glossy, SHE Canada. Indeed, over the past week we have experienced just how harrowing it can get for some and, more importantly, the resultant faux pas this can give rise to. A nervous interviewee is a clumsy interviewee.   To help you through such incredibly trying moments, SHE has compiled some tips for you lovely interviewees to keep in mind as you strive towards your ever-exhilarating goals.   Tip 1: Dress the Part. It is not untrue what you read on every single job interview advice piece that comes up the second you Google “how to ace a job interview” (we know you’ve done it. Whatever). A prospective employer gathers a TON of information about what they can expect from you before you have even said hello. Moreover, this is a fashion mag. Show us you are fashionable. Don’t wear the destroyed-acid-wash jeans that your dog has been sleeping on for a week and a half. They may be completely fabulous for what you will be getting up to later tonight. In an office where you need people to take your intelligence as seriously as your dress sense, they are not. It’s important to be comfortable in what you have on. If you feel like you are one step away from falling flat on your face in your sky high H&M-line Choos  and won't be able to get back up because your too-tight top is constricting your airways and a fall would consume too much of the dangerously low supply of oxygen you currently have access to, you probably look it. Fashion is not always uncomfortable; if you can’t find a way to look fabulous and feel fabulous simultaneously, you should probably be considering different career options.   Tip 2: Always carry a resume Seriously.       Tip 3: Know why you want the position.   It’s insulting to everyone involved if you show up without knowing why you are here. “I like magazines” is not a good reason to want to intern here. “I like fashion” is not a complete response to why you want to work at a print publication where you may be asked to write about anything ranging from Justin Bieber’s new pet hamster to how important it is to invest national resources toward opposing the Taliban occupation in Northern Pakistan— all usually on a pretty tight deadline. Be ready to tell us that stuff like this is what you live for. We do.   Tip 4: Pick an appropriate writing sample. By the time a sample of your writing is asked of you, you are probably well aware of what the position warrants. Pick a sample accordingly. If you do not have any samples of your writing that you think are worthy of public consumption, you are applying for the wrong position. That said, if the only sample of writing that you think is decent is a really personal piece about that one time in high school where you accidentally shot your best friend in the arm in a drug-ridden frenzy and then realized you had a drug issue and spent the next seven months in rehab and are now a reformed person all because of that one time you shot your best friend in the arm, you should probably choose a different sample. We’re really happy that you’ve turned your life around and that everything is dandy for you now, but we just met you. Seriously? Tip 5: Try to remember that everyone in the office, including the person interviewing you, was in your shoes at one point or another. This will prevent you from getting too nervous. Getting too nervous will make you do things like forget who your favourite fashion designer is, whether someone even is a fashion designer, or say you like reading Vulture mag because it has “nice recaps of all the T.V. shows.” I know because I have done all of the above. It will also make you think writing samples of the nature described in Tip #4 are a go. They are not. Therefore, try to remind yourself that the person sitting across from you asking what you are doing here today is just another human being who was once in your shoes, meaning on some level they relate to you and you do not have to be terrified of them! I’m pretty sure if I had remembered that during the aforementioned interview that I (spectacularly) bombed, I would have had an easier time just having a conversation with my interviewers, telling them the real reason I love Vulture, and remembering that yes, Zara does indeed count as a fashion designer.     Now go get 'em!

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