Friday, July 3, 2015

Terrified About Your Grad School Interview? Don’t Be

By Deliece Knights
Student Ambassador, Baruch College

Grad school interviews are, without a doubt, terrifying. Anxiety and a perpetual feeling of impending doom cloud your mind and seem almost impossible to shake. Why wouldn’t they be terrifying? You’ve spent your entire life planning your future to get to this point. You’ve painstakingly prepared for the GMAT/GRE/TOEFL, and jumped a chocolate box assortment’s worth of other seemingly impassable hurdles. You’ve deliberated, crafted, edited, re-edited and then further re-edited your essays to demonstrate the perfect you, but alas, you find yourself confronted by one more hurdle… an interview.

As daunting as it may seem, there are many ways to prepare and build the confidence you need to have a great grad school interview. Here are three of the most important ones.

1. Change the Negatives to Positives

The first and perhaps most important factor in being prepared is to change your mindset about the interview. You may tend to view your interview as a bad thing. You could be asking yourself questions like, Was there something weird in my essay? Do I have a mediocre application? STOP. Being chosen for an interview is a good thing. It means they liked you! Consider this:

  • The school may be considering your application for a potential scholarship.
  • There may be something interesting from your application that the school would like to know more about.
In addition, you should also view your interview in a positive light because it is a golden opportunity to sell yourself as an applicant. Rather than stressing, look at your interview as a chance to:
  • Describe important moments and achievements in your life that you may not have been able to include in your application
  • Demonstrate in a face-to-face forum why you should be admitted
  • Network with a representative from the school who can champion your application.
Once you begin to change your outlook on the interview, your preparedness level will increase.

2. Research, Research, Research

It is expected that you would have done a considerable amount of research on a school before sending in your application. Why else would you have applied? It can be helpful, however, to do additional research about a school’s interview process.

There are many sites and videos online dedicated to helping prospective students find out about different schools and their interview processes. Your research can reveal the following:

  • Interview format (group versus one on one)
  • Interviewer types (alumni, deans, consultants)
  • School-specific interview questions 
  • General interview questions
Once you have an idea of how interviews are typically done by the school, your anxiety should be greatly reduced. Now you can picture yourself during the interview and better prepare.

3. Practice Makes Perfect, So Know Your Stuff

Once you have an idea of what questions you may be asked, spend time crafting your responses. There is nothing wrong with assembling a group of key stories and moments from your career (academic and professional) that can be used to demonstrate your ability in a graduate capacity. Go over the questions and see which of your life experiences can be used as examples about your capabilities. Knowing your material and how you will respond is preparedness itself.

In addition, if English is not your first language, then practicing your responses and how you will phrase them makes a world of difference. That way, you can focus less on what you’re trying to say and more on connecting with the interviewer.
Deliece Knights, 24, will matriculate at Baruch College in New York City in August. There she will pursue an MBA in organizational behavior/human resource management. She holds a bachelor’s degree in French with a minor in human resource management. Deliece enjoys traveling and has experience working as a professional dancer. She is from Trinidad and Tobago.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Popular Degrees: What Fields Are Nepalese Students Pursuing?

By Jordan Friedman
World Education Services
Graphic by Brittney Bodden

The population of Nepalese students in the United States has declined steadily in the past five years. But overall, Nepal has become a more attractive country for international recruitment as its literacy rate and education system improve.

According to the Institute of International Education’s Open Doors Report, in 2014, the U.S. saw an 8.6 percent decrease in the number of Nepalese students in the U.S. from the previous year, down to about 8,100 – a somewhat large drop from the approximately 11,500 Nepalese students in the U.S. back in 2009. A WES report from March 2013 attributes this decline to changing visa policies in the United States, with the number of F-1 visas issued to Nepali students falling 71 percent between 2009 and 2012. Still, Nepal’s educational system has improved in the last four decades – the country has more than doubled its literacy rate – making it a more attractive region from which the U.S. can recruit students.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Top 3 College Summer Sessions for International Students

By Naimeesha Murthy
World Education Services

Attending summer sessions at a college or university can enable prospective and current international students to travel, gain additional skills and make new friends. 

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Heath Care for International Students in the USA: Tips and Terminology

By Meghavaty Suresh
Contributing Writer

Studying in the U.S. is great on many levels. It’s a different world of education when compared to many countries, especially in the east. That said, it’s important to throw some light on certain aspects of U.S. life that may be challenging for international students. One major challenge that every international student should take notice of is health care.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Convert Your GPA to the 4.0 Scale

If you’re applying to a U.S. college and need to convert your high school GPA to the 4.0 scale, we’ve got you covered.

You can use our iGPA calculator, which will make the conversion based on the grades you provide. This will allow you to compare your own GPA to, for instance, the average high school GPA of the colleges where you apply. Many higher education institutions will use the 4.0 scale in evaluating your application.

Friday, June 26, 2015

U.S. College Admissions Exams Will Be Offered to Cuban Students

By Jordan Friedman
World Education Services

Will U.S. colleges begin recruiting international students from Cuba?

As relations between the two countries normalize, The Wall Street Journal is reporting that, for the first time, it’s possible – though there are some kinks to work out first.

According to a WSJ article published last week, two popular university-entrance exams used for U.S. university admissions will soon be offered in Cuba. These include the Test of English as a Foreign Language, or TOEFL, which many non-native English speakers must take when applying to universities in the U.S., United Kingdom, Australia and other countries. Four Cuban students will complete the exam at the end of June, according to the WSJ; however, there are not yet any plans to administer the test beyond this month. The Educational Testing Service (ETS) will also start offering the GRE revised general test – used for graduate school admission in the U.S. – in Cuba as early as October.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Number of Vietnamese Students in the U.S. Rising Steadily

By Jordan Friedman
World Education Services

As Vietnam’s economy stabilizes, the number of college students it sends to the U.S. rises.

A new report from WES’ Research and Advisory Services team delves into four emerging markets from which the U.S. expects to more heavily recruit students in the upcoming years, and Vietnam is one of them (along with Brazil, Indonesia and Nigeria). Throughout the past 13 years, the number of Vietnamese students enrolled in U.S. colleges has risen steadily; 16,579 Vietnamese students came to the U.S. in 2013-14, making Vietnam the eighth ranked country in terms of international students in the U.S. Based on data from the Institute of International Education, the country has seen a 26 percent increase in this number since 2009-10.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Univ. of Washington, Beijing School to Launch New Tech Institute

The Liberal Arts Quadrangle at the University of Washington.
By Jordan Friedman
World Education Services

From sustainability to clean energy to transportation, academic institutions are striving to address the major issues facing the planet in the 21st century.

That’s why the University of Washington and a university in China are partnering to create a U.S.-based graduate institute that will enable students to explore ways to use technology and innovation in tackling some of these global challenges. Called the Global Innovation Exchange, or GIX, the institute (which is also backed by a $40 million donation from Microsoft) will open to a few dozen students from both countries next fall.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

WEBINAR RECAP: U.S. College Application Timelines and Deadlines

Thank you to all those who joined us on Thursday morning for our webinar, “Starting Your U.S. Application: Timelines and Deadlines.” We live tweeted the webinar on our Twitter page.

Becky Konowicz, the director of international admission at Santa Clara University, discussed and answered questions about U.S. college application requirements and offered insight into the process from an admission officer’s perspective.

How to Improve Your English as an International Student

By Xiao Lu
World Education Services

Hey, international students: Are you planning to study abroad in the U.S. but are worried about your English skills? English can be a challenge for international students who have recently arrived in the U.S. Although you might have gotten great scores on your English tests, you still may not be able to place your McDonald’s order in a fashionable way. Here are a couple of tips to improve your English and help you adapt to your life in the United States.

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