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Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture Student Success

The 4 Benefits of A Mock Interview

If you’ve ever had an interview, you know that they can be very intimidating, so you don’t ever want to show up unprepared. There are plenty of ways to prepare, but a recent article from The Muse says that “one of the best ways to simulate the actual interview process is by doing a mock interview.”

Mock interviews allow you to simulate your interview and test your skills with someone who isn’t going to be evaluating you for the job. Mock interviews are offered through career services, but can also be done with a trusted professor, colleague, or friend.

Here are the major benefits of doing a mock interview outlined by the article:

  1. Reduce Stress and Anxiety: If you’ve never had an interview, or are unsure how to answer interview questions, mock interviews are a great way to “test-drive” your responses. Mock interviews also allow your interviewer to give you feedback on your responses so you can improve them before the interview.
  2. Boost Confidence: Mock interviews will allow you, and your interviewer, to pinpoint your strengths and weaknesses. Practicing beforehand will give you time to “address your weaknesses and build your strengths.” Improving will boost confidence and allow you to perform better during the actual interview.
  3. Provide Constructive Feedback: “No one is the perfect candidate,” so a mock interview will allow you to clarify your responses and recognize areas of weakness. In actual interviews, you rarely get feedback, so conducting a mock interview with someone will give you insight into your interview skills.
  4. Prepare You For Behavioral-Based Questions: Most companies ask behavioral-based questions during interviews. Doing a mock interview beforehand will prepare you for these and allow you to perfect how you handle certain questions.

“Practice makes perfect!” You should never just wing a job interview. You always want to come prepared, and mock interviews can help you do that. You should always do mock interviews, even if you have a high level of skills and have had many interviews in the past. Different people could have very insightful feedback for you that might land you the job!

Read the full article here!

If you’d like to set up a mock interview or career coaching advising appointment with one of our career services staff members, click here and scroll to the bottom of the website! 

Recovering from a Bad Interview

Everyone has had a bad interview experience; if you want to learn from them and improve your chances of success in the future, try the following four strategies:

  1. Take Notes: Reflect immediately after the interview on what may have gone wrong. Write down your thoughts and feelings while they’re still fresh, as this can help capture your emotions and insights most accurately. Revisit these notes after a few days with a clear mind to analyze and learn from them. Discussing the experience with a friend or the Voiland Career Services staff for feedback can also be helpful.
  2. Identify Strengths: Despite the stress and potential setbacks of an interview, it’s important to recognize what you did well. Reflect on the parts of the interview where you felt most comfortable and confident, such as effective storytelling or a certain answer you gave to a question. You can use these strengths as the foundation for developing your interview strategy.
  3. Set Up a Routine: Establish a consistent routine to prepare for interviews, think of it as how athletes prepare for games. This routine could include daily practice, mock interviews, and activities on the morning of the interview to relax and focus your mind. A familiar routine can help ease anxiety and improve your performance.
  4. Send Thank-You Notes: Always follow up with a brief thank-you note after an interview to express gratitude for the opportunity. Similarly, if you receive a job rejection, send a thank-you note asking for feedback while expressing interest in future opportunities. This approach demonstrates professionalism and can provide valuable insights for improvement.

By adopting these strategies, you can transform a negative interview experience into a learning opportunity, enhancing your interview skills and increasing your chances of future success.

Read the full article here!

Meet the Spring 2024 Career Services Team!

Were excited to introduce the Internships and Career Services staff for the Spring 2024 semester! Accompanying director Sandi Brabb is our career coordinator, Maya Salsbury; Sydney Troy, our graduate career coach intern; and Emmy Farrell, Molly Gooding and Tyler Kazen, our undergraduate career coach interns.

Please see below for more information about our new team members:

Sandi Brabb

Internships and Career Services Director

Sandi Brabb was born in southern California, but lived in six different states before making Pullman, WA, home. She began working at WSU in the College of Vet Med’s department of Veterinary and Comparative Anatomy, Pharmacology and Physiology (VCAPP), now known as Integrative Physiology and Neuroscience (IPN), where she worked for 18 years in a variety of positions including assistant director of Neuroscience. While in VCAPP, she earned an MBA from WSU in 2004 and in 2007 President Lane Rawlins awarded her the President’s Excellence Award. Sandi was the founding director of the Murrow College Student Services and is currently the Director of Internships & Career Services in the Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture. She is a proud Coug alumna, and together with her husband, John, are proud Coug parents of three Coug alumni.

Maya Salsbury

Career Coordinator 

Maya, is from Moscow, Idaho. She has an M.Ed. degree from Johns Hopkins University, School of Education, and a Bachelor’s from the University of Idaho, Maya brings both expertise and a passion for education to her role. Beyond her career, Maya finds solace in the serene landscapes of the Palouse while cross-country skiing and snowshoeing at Palouse Divide. She enjoys experimenting with new cooking and baking recipes. Maya also boasts an impressive 12-year competitive swimming background. What truly sets Maya apart is her genuine love for students and her unwavering dedication to their success. At the VCEA Internships and Career Services office, she thrives on forging connections with students, helping them flourish in their career pursuits, and making a lasting impact within our team.


Sydney Troy 

Graduate Career Coach Intern

Sydney is from Bremerton, WA, and is currently in her first year as a graduate student and her fifth year at WSU, majoring in Architecture. Outside her academic pursuits, Sydney shares a unique bond as a fraternal twin and is a proud parent of two cats. Growing up, she honed her skills on the soccer field, playing premier soccer with Kitsap Alliance and Gig Harbor Premier. Sydney’s passion for helping students find opportunities that align with their interests and goals is what drives her dedication to the career and internship services office, making her a valued member of our team.


Emmy Farrell 

Undergraduate Career Coach Intern

Meet Emmy Farrell, a fourth-year Architecture major from Spokane, WA, who brings her love for creativity, tennis, crafts, and coffee to her role as a Career Services Intern at Voiland College. With a passion for helping students navigate the transition to the professional world, Emmy finds fulfillment in offering guidance and support in resume building, interview preparation, and career exploration. Her dedication and empathy shine through as she empowers her peers to pursue their dreams with confidence and determination. Emmy’s unwavering commitment to making a difference embodies the spirit of excellence within the Career Services team, ensuring that every student she encounters is equipped for success on their journey forward.

Molly Gooding 

Undergraduate Career Coach Intern

Meet Molly Gooding, a fourth-year Business Marketing major from Rocklin, California, and a vital member of the Voiland College Career Services team. Molly’s love for the outdoors shines through in her hobbies of running and playing pickleball with friends, reflecting her vibrant and active personality. As a Career Services Intern, she finds fulfillment in guiding her peers towards their professional goals. With Molly’s invaluable assistance and marketing skills, every student she mentors is equipped with the tools and encouragement needed to flourish on their individual career journeys.


Tyler Kazen 

Undergraduate Career Coach Intern

Meet Tyler Kazen, a dedicated Voiland College Career Services Intern hailing from Wenatchee, WA, currently in his third year at Washington State University pursuing a degree in Mechanical Engineering. When Tyler isn’t immersed in academic pursuits, he can be found enjoying the great outdoors, indulging in water activities like fishing and wakeboarding during the summer, and hitting the slopes as an avid skier during the winter months. Tyler’s passion for helping others shines through in their role at Career Services, where he derives immense satisfaction from assisting fellow students in pursuing their dream jobs. With Tyler’s enthusiasm and support, students can navigate the complexities of career planning with ease.

Career Services LinkedIn

Hey Cougs!

Want to stay updated with Voiland college career services events like resume/cover letter reviews, employer information sessions, and career networking events? Looking for internship and job opportunities? Searching for scholarship applications related to your major interests?  Make sure to join the Voiland College Career Services group on LinkedIn where the career services team keeps you updated on any and all career related events and opportunities!

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See you on LinkedIn Cougs!

Mastering Critical Thinking: A Guide to Enhancing Decision-Making and Career Success

In our fast-paced world, the ability to think critically is paramount for success in both personal and professional realms. In a recent article by The Muse, the concept of critical thinking is explored in depth, highlighting its importance and offering practical strategies for improvement.

Critical thinking, as defined in the article, involves questioning assumptions, conducting thorough research, and rigorously testing ideas to arrive at well-informed decisions. This skill is not only essential for problem-solving but also for building relationships and advancing one’s career. Job seekers, in particular, are increasingly valued for their ability to think critically, as it signifies resourcefulness and adaptability.

The article outlines seven actionable steps to enhance critical thinking skills:

  1. Asking probing questions to gather comprehensive information.
  2. Engaging in regular self-reflection to analyze past experiences and decisions.
  3. Embracing change and diverse perspectives to broaden one’s understanding.
  4. Cultivating a diverse network to access varied viewpoints and feedback.
  5. Improving active listening skills to fully comprehend others’ perspectives.
  6. Expanding knowledge through wide reading and study of diverse topics.
  7. Stepping out of one’s comfort zone by tackling new and challenging tasks.

Moreover, the article provides valuable insights on how to showcase critical thinking abilities during the job search process. It advises job seekers to highlight decision-making processes and problem-solving skills in resumes and cover letters, and to demonstrate critical thinking during interviews by thinking aloud, asking insightful questions, and identifying opportunities for innovation within the organization.

Find the full article here!


18 Things You Should Never Say in a Job Interview

The Muse article “18 Things You Should Never Say in a Job Interview” by Regina Borsellino provides practical advice for job seekers to enhance their interview performance. It emphasizes the importance of thorough preparation, clear career goals, and maintaining a positive tone. Discouraging negative comments about previous employers and clichéd responses, the article guides candidates to present authentic insights into their strengths and weaknesses. It cautions against reading answers verbatim, using excessive business jargon, and oversharing personal information. The overall aim is to help candidates make a positive and memorable impression during job interviews.

For more information you can find the article here. And/or to set up a mock interview or career coaching advise appointment with the career services staff click here and scroll to the bottom of the website! 

Boeing Mentorship Program 2024-2025!

Hey Cougs! WSU has another exciting year of the mentorship program in collaboration with Boeing, offering engineering students a unique opportunity to dive into the aerospace industry. The program pairs students with Boeing mentors, providing insights into the aerospace sector, career opportunities, and valuable general career guidance. Students are expected to maintain professionalism, attend events, and actively engage with mentors, contributing to the success of the program. With virtual kickoff events, career guidance, virtual speaking sessions, and the possibility of midyear networking events, the program promises a holistic approach to professional development. Applications for the 2024-2025 academic year are now open until September 6, 2024. Don’t miss the chance to soar to new heights – apply online and embrace the transformative journey with Boeing’s mentorship.

For more information, contact Sandi Brabb, Director of Voiland College Career Services, Dana 138,, 509-335-3740.