How Can I Prepare For My Interview?


Big Interview Basics…

Big Interview has a rich database full of resources that can be used for students at many different levels. It provides a combination of ninety-four videos, no longer than 8 minutes each, and a guided practice. These videos are conducted by Pamela Skillings, who is a Certified Professional Career Coach. Skillings has helped individuals to improve their interviews skills and is here to help empower you to close the deal on that next job opportunity!

Big Interview consists of a variety of videos that focus on providing tips and advice for handling any type of interview, whether it is a general , industrial , competency or admissions interview.  It provides a variety of techniques on how to approach problem questions and how to avoid the common mistakes. Big Interview helps you identify nervous habits and how to control them with practice, while helping you improve your nonverbal interview communications.

Big Interview provides an Answer Builder which helps individuals to practice and improve their answers using S.T.A.R. This is a step-by-step tool that allows you to create and structure the behavioral question answers that are crucial to your interviews. S.T.A.R stands for Situation, Task, Approach and Results/outcome. This techniques helps you demonstrate competencies relevant to the job you wish to obtain.

Have you ever been in a job interview and found yourself stuck in your comfort zone? Big Interview has an Interview Roulette that displays random interview questions which will help you recreate the uncertainty in an interview and get you out of your comfort zone. For example: Describe a time when you had to step up and lead an important project?

Big Interview’s video curriculum provides many different aspects on how to ace your interview. It provides the job interview basics and fundamentals, best practices and common mistakes, and behavioral questions.  It helps you build an interview story that will show your leadership and approach in decision-making situations.  Big Interview focuses on getting you to ace the questions that might be asked. For example: Tell me about yourself?  Where do you see yourself in five years? Why do you want to work here?

One of my favorite parts of Big Interview is that it helps you identify your strengths and weaknesses and at the same time find a way to put it into words what will sell you as one of the best candidates in the industry.  Also, Big Interview helps you identify and analyze the job description and how you can fix your resume for the job you are trying to acquire. To conclude, Big Interview recommends that at the end of an interview it is best to ask smart questions to show interest in the company you wish to work for.  Check out Big Interview on the Career Development website, under Student Resources.  It’s worth a try!!

-Katherine Mercado


interview clip art

5 Tips on Salary Negotiation

On Wednesday, February 24th, STAC’s Office of Career Development held a Salary Negotiation Workshop, led by Maureen Mulhern and Fran Reinstein. Throughout the program, many helpful and useful tips and suggestions about how to negotiate salary were discussed. The following are 5 very essential tips to successfully negotiating a salary:

  1. When to Negotiate

Avoid discussing salary before an offer; you want to ensure that you have the position before initiating a negotiation. If asked about salary requirements in a preliminary interview, it’s best to not get into details. You can suggest a broad salary range or propose discussing it in more details in the future. When it is time to negotiate, after an offer has been put on the table, be respectful and honest. It is beneficial to start the conversation with “Is there any room to discuss salary?” vs. “Can we negotiate?”

2. Do Research; Be Credible

Before accepting an offer, do some research. Don’t be afraid to ask for a few days to consider the offer. Take this time to use websites like, and to research similar companies and find out about salary ranges for specific job positions.

3. Determine Your Value

In order to decide if you want to negotiate your offered salary, you should first establish your worth. When it comes to work, a person’s value is determined by skills and past experience. If you are going to ask for a higher salary be prepared to explain why you deserve more money. It’s good to know what skills the company looks for in its employees so you can explain how you exemplify these skills to help make the company more successful. Past experience will also play a pivotal role in determining one’s worth. Proving that you can handle a wide array of responsibilities will support your request for additional pay.

4. Be Confident; Don’t Worry

Most candidates worry that if they start a discussion about salary negotiation an employer will retract the salary. However, according to NerdWallet, almost 75% of employers are willing to negotiate and almost 90% will not retract an offer if an entry level candidate negotiates. Most employers will perceive a candidate who wants to negotiate as confident, not foolish. Bottom line: DON’T worry, if an employer made you an offer, they WANT you.

5. What Else to Negotiate In Addition to Salary

On top of salary, there are many other items that are negotiable, like vacation time and PTO (Paid Time Off), shares in the company, sign-on bonus, hours and remote work. It is important to be informed about the current benefits of a company before requesting better benefits. The best way to initiate this discussion is to ask about the company’s flexibility when it comes to additional benefits.

Salary negotiation can be a nerve-wracking experience, but with proper research and preparation, you will benefit greatly.

-Kerrianne Nolan