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Students Get A Taste Of Job Interview Process

OSWEGO, NY – Dozens of Oswego High School students got a taste of real job interviews Thursday as several local professionals questioned the teens.

The interviewers represented a variety of businesses including Cali’s Carriage House Florist, IBEW Local 43, ARISE, Army National Guard, Oswego City Employment & Training, Camp Hollis, SUNY Oswego Small Business Development and others.

OHS student Danielle Pauldine takes part in a mock job interview with Mike Cali. The program is designed to give students experience in handling real life job and college interviews.
OHS student Danielle Pauldine takes part in a mock job interview with Mike Cali. The program is designed to give students experience in handling real life job and college interviews.

The interviews, conducted in the Media Center, were treated as the real thing by the professionals and the students.

The professionals said they were impressed with the way the students handled the situation.

The program has been conducted for the past several years, and is designed to allow OHS seniors to get a real world work experience with interview techniques.

They handled themselves very well and were focused on what they were looking to do, observed Jim Farfaglia of Camp Hollis.

“I was very impressed with how the students handled the interview process. They were well prepared and didn’t seem the least bit nervous at all,” he said.

It was a worthwhile experience, according to Danielle Pauldine.

“It went good,” she said of her interview with Mike Cali.

In the future, she said, she hopes to open her own business, a bakery.

Kevin O’Connor interviewed first with Farfaglia.

“He gave me some good pointers about things I could have done better. He pointed out things that he liked and things he didn’t like,” he said.

“I thought it helped me a lot,” Ben Canale said of the interviews he went on. “They gave me a lot of good advice, like I shouldn’t wear sneakers with my dress clothes.”

He plans on having a career in the nursing field.

“This is something that (Library Media Specialist) Janet (Bernreuther) and I do for two days. Day one, we talked to them about interviewing and day two if they don’t have a resume we help them develop one and they bring it to the interviews,” explained Ed Stacy, one of the teachers involved in the program.

“The interview is a good experience for them. It shows them what they need for a successful interview to get them on the right track to, hopefully, land a job,” he said.

“I actually asked one person to come back for a real interview,” Farfaglia said. “All the kids I interviewed were top notch.”

Cali noted that there were some blanks on some of the resumes. They should be filled out completely, he said, adding that when an interviewer sees something not filled in it raises a red flag as to why.

Volunteer work is something that should be included on the resumes, he pointed out.

Bernreuther cited the community members who took the time to come in and work with the students.

“We appreciate them coming in and sharing their expertise,” she said. “They’re doing this on their own time.”

She never went on an interview until after she was out of college, looking for a teaching job, she said.

“I had never been through anything like this. I had no idea of what to expect. My first experience was absolutely frightening. Had I gone through something like this, I’m sure I would have been more relaxed and able to handle the questions easier,” she said. “This is a very valuable experience for these students.”