Interviews, do you think it would be a good idea to try even if I have terrible social anxiety?Answered
I have awful social anxiety. Overall I would say I'm an A grade student. I don't have much ECs but I have a decent GPA (3.79UW), hopefully good rec letters, and work as a family responsibility. My chances are hard target for my top choice (25-35%) and safety for my second choice and other schools (ranges around 80-98%). None of the schools I like require interviews but they encourage them. I'm torn on if I should try even though I don't think I would do to good. The schools I like are mainly selective with acceptance rates ranging from 37%-78% not including my safety schools.
Do you think it would be a good idea to sign up for one from my safety school as practice to see if I would survive one from my top choices? Or do you think I should not bother with it since it's not required.
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I would say first sign up for an interview in a safety school. Do research, even about the safety school and a bit of preparation and you should be fine.
Giving interviews is a really good idea since it gives another 'factor' to the AO to decide whether you are good. If there is a tie between you and another student and you gave the interview, they'd probably chose you unless you REALLY messed up the interview.
Try practicing with your parents/siblings/friends for the interview but don't be over-prepared. Don't worry, the interviewers are usually really friendly and the interview in itself tends to be somewhat laidback and casual.
Don't hold back when interviewing. Show them your strengths and what you actually WANT them to know.
The best part is that interviews are not a make or break part of your application so even if you do mess it up big time, it won't have A LOT of effect on your application. If your interview goes good or even okay, it WILL benefit your application.
All the best!
Honestly, overcoming social anxiety is a difficult task and I'm not sure you want to experiment with your college list like that unless you are perfectly okay with losing one on the list.
Before I would sign up for an interview, I would do the following things.
-Research more schools that are "Targets" that do not require interviews. From what you wrote you might be lopsided with "Safeties".
-Instead of Interviews, I highly recommend you use your Summer to visit as many schools as possible in person and go to the info. sessions and walking tours. During each visit, carry a journal with you with questions you want to ask. Or jot them down while you are in the info session. Then when the presenter opens the floor to questions, raise your hand and ask your question. And if they do not fully answer it to your satisfaction or you think of a follow-up question, then ask the follow-up. This will get you into the practice of being in public, in a large venue like a lecture hall, and being assertive and confident. Then practice asking questions with the Tour Guide who will be an upper-class college student. They are more relaxed about being helpful and you will have more than 1 opportunity to engage with them.
-Watch these good youtube videos about college interviews:
-Find someone who is either an alumni interviewer to practice with like a "MOCK" interview.
If you feel you have made some progress with overcoming your social anxiety enough to try a real interview, then go into it fully armed with answers to all the anticipated questions.
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