Text Size Default Text SizeDefault Text Size Large Text SizeLarge Text Size Largest Text SizeLargest Text Size Print Print this Page

2008 News Releases

Criminal justice majors gain job interview experience

April 22, 2008

Criminal justice class

All Longwood students benefit from internship or research experience before entering the work force, but some have the added advantage of job interview experience with actual employers.

Seventeen criminal justice majors enrolled in Dr. Debra Kelley’s senior seminar course recently engaged in mock interviews with representatives of six agencies. The students were asked real interview questions and were evaluated using the same criteria used to screen prospective employees.  “This program has been an astounding success with the students who are able to gain real world interview experience. What a difference it has made in their confidence,” said Dr. Kelley who launched the mock interview experience with her senior seminar students in fall 2006.

During the recent session, students interviewed with the Department of Corrections Adult Probation and Parole, Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, Henrico County Police, Longwood Department of Public Safety, attorney Jimmy Bell, and Wal-Mart.

“The mock interview is an excellent occasion for the criminal justice students. It provides an opportunity for the participants to gain experience and/or enhance their knowledge of the interviewing process,” said Russell Dove, administrative sergeant for Longwood’s Department of Public Safety. “I am confident the experience will assist them in the future and it was rewarding for me to be a part of that experience.”

Ellen Masters ’97, M.S. ‘02, assistant director of the career center, worked with Dr. Kelley to coordinate the event and has assisted other disciplines including athletic training and communication studies on similar mock interview sessions.

 “The employers who attended this session were impressed with the resumes and the quality and preparedness of the students,” said Masters who has also conducted mock interviews with students. “The students were very receptive to the feedback they received from the employers.  With graduation approaching, they know this will benefit them in the near future.”

For the round robin mock interviews, the students were placed in groups of two or three and then met as a group with each interviewer who questioned the students individually. “This situation allowed the students to experience a variety of interviewing styles and to learn not only from their own interview but also by observing others,” said Dr. Kelley.

The mock interviews are just another example of Longwood’s commitment to career success for its students.  “We hope to offer this opportunity to other disciplines in the future,” said Masters.