A couple questions about formalities at the interview.

Discussion in 'Nominations' started by kfacademy, Nov 10, 2012.

  1. kfacademy

    kfacademy USMA Appointee 2017

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    So I have my MOC interview on Monday and I was hoping I could get a few questions answered. Thanks in advance! :smile:

    1) If it is a board of maybe 5-8 people is it appropriate to shake all of the hands? At the start, end, or both? I would usually shake hands, introduce self, thank etc at a job interview but I am wondering how it is different when you are presenting yourself to many people. How do introductions go?

    2) Is religion okay to talk about? My faith is just part of who I am and it is important to me. If for example the person I would most like to meet is a Biblical character or I have a biblical allusion to some other answer is that okay or should I steer clear?

    3) My interview is on veteran's day and I usually make it a point every year to call my grandpa and thank him for his service and to thank any other military person I see that day. If there are military personnel on my board should I take time to thank them for their service? To me that seems appropriate given the day, but could it be seen as trying to kiss-up.

    Again thanks if you can answer any of these questions for me! :) Also if you have any oddball/ethical questions to share I appreciate it. I think I am as ready as can be for most of the common ones. :thumb:
     
  2. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

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    Interesting questions . . . and I'm sure there are lots of views. There really is no right or wrong answer to any of these but I'll give you my opinion.

    Most boards consist of 2-3 people, although every MOC is different. I'd take your cue from them. If they stand up and extend a hand, I would shake it. If they stay seated or keep their hands at their sides, I'd nod to each of them.

    Yes, but don't overdo it. And I would say the same thing about any life activity. For example, if soccer was the most important thing in your life, I wouldn't answer every question in the context of soccer. Doing so makes you seem one-dimensional. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being religious but you don't want to come across as a religious zealot as that could rub some people the wrong way.

    It is a very nice gesture. However, I personally would skip it in this situation b/c, as you say, it could be perceived as sucking up. If you have the rest of the day off, visit a local nursing home and thank the veterans who are there -- probably lots of WWII vets. Seriously. They would really, really appreciate it -- I can guarantee that you would bring a tear to their eyes and give them a moment they will never forget! :smile:
     
  3. efirestone14

    efirestone14 Member

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    When I interviewed with my local Congressman, there were six people on the interview panel and I shoke hands with all of them. They all stood up as I entered the room, so it was appropriate to shake hands with them. If it is appropriate to shake hands, make sure you do so with a firm handshake.

    As far as questions go, make sure you know why you want to attend a service academy and why you want to serve your country. Be prepared to explain your leadership attributes as well as your extracurricular activities. The only thing you can do to prepare for oddball questions is to go into the interview with an open mind and be prepared for anything. One unexpected question I was asked was, "What is something we should know about you that we would not know from your application?"

    Search this forum for information on nomination interviews and you will find many threads with tips and advice for the interviews as well as questions you will most likely be asked.
     
  4. LFry94

    LFry94 USAFA C1C '17

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    Same situation here as well. Last year at one particular interview there were six people on the board. They all stood up when I entered the room, and each extended a greeting, stated their name, and then offered a handshake.

    I too have firm religious beliefs and they came up during my interviews; specifically when they asked about some of the leadership positions I held, many of which were in my church. I simply put a lot of emphasis on why I held those positions, and that was to serve others.

    As you guessed and like usna1985 said, I would avoid veteran's day related gestures to avoid looking as if you were trying to score brownie points.

    Good luck during your interview! I'm sure you'll do great. :smile:
     
  5. kfacademy

    kfacademy USMA Appointee 2017

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    Thanks all for the advice and opinions! Makes me more confident just to have an idea of what I am walking into. I am really looking forward to it! :) Good Luck to the other candidates!
     

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