‘Battle’ Puts Student Job Interview Skills to the Test

On Wednesday, April 13, Azusa Pacific’s Center for Career and Calling hosted the final event in its Be Prepared professional development series: Battle of the Interviews. The center accepted applications for several weeks before selecting six finalists to represent their departments and interview before a panel of judges for a $500 Amazon gift card grand prize. The finalists presented their portfolios, résumés, and interview outfits, and participated in a mock interview in front of an audience of nearly 100 APU students, faculty, and staff.

The evening event, held in Munson Chapel, featured an impressive panel of judges included Paul Solis, instructor and recruiter for The Walt Disney Company; Steve Woo, group supervisor for Jet Propulsion Laboratory; David Bixby, Ed.D., APU executive vice president; Peggy Campbell, APU chair of the board of trustees; and Vicky Bowden, DNSc, RN, APU vice provost for undergraduate programs.

“The purpose of this event was not only to help students grow personally and professionally, but also to help raise awareness of the skills necessary for pursuing a career after graduation,” said Adam Jan ’16, intern in the Center for Career and Calling. “Our goal was to have students participate in a mock interview and exemplify outstanding interview skills in front of their peers.”

The event encouraged audience involvement by asking attendees to dress their best and bring a résumé for the chance to win either a $50 or $100 Amazon gift card. In addition to providing crucial insight for the participants, the audience witnessed several examples of good and bad interviews, ultimately learning tips and tricks for success.

“I gained not only direct, specific guidelines for how to get through an interview well, but there were several solid lessons on employee etiquette scattered throughout the night,” said student attendee Jackie Murphy ’16. “These lessons applied to almost any professional situation, any field of work, ultimately helping me learn how to be the best applicant, the best employee, and the best coworker I can be.”

Though everyone in attendance walked away with valuable insight, participant Kendelle Abts ’17 walked away with the grand prize.

“I felt confident in the answers I had given as I remained true to myself and had experience to be qualified for the position,” said Abts. “I left Munson Chapel content with the answers I gave, thankful for the responses I received, and satisfied that I represented myself well.”

During the battle, each finalist excelled as an example of how a candidate should act during a job interview, and the audience responded positively to the first-hand demonstration.

“We had a great turnout and have been overwhelmed by the support and encouragement our office received from this event,” said Jan.