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Teacher candidates polish interview skills with local educators

Teacher candidates polish interview skills with local educators

OHIO Chillicothe graduates and future teachers recently participated in mock interviews to prepare them for the job hunt.

Middle childhood education majors — many who graduated last week — met with local school administrators and educators to practice and hone their interview skills, as well as learn what their local school districts are searching for in new teacher candidates.

Karen Corcoran, associate professor of instruction in the middle childhood education program and regional coordinator of professional internships in teaching, said many local school partners expressed interest in coming to campus to meet the teacher candidates.

“This has become a two-way street in terms of benefits,” Corcoran said. “Not only do the graduating teacher candidates get an opportunity to practice this important job search skill, but the local administrators get to practice interviewing and meet viable candidates for teaching positions in their school district. It is also one more opportunity for us as program coordinators in the education department to continue to cultivate the great relationships we have with our education partners who host our teacher candidates in clinical field opportunities including the capstone internship.”

Corcoran also said the mock interview process has resulted in many job opportunities and hires over the years.

Patti Stiltner, a teacher at Zane Trace Elementary School, participated in the mock interview day and said her school was able to secure a candidate for an upcoming position.

“I felt the candidates did a good job of presenting themselves during the interviews,” she said. “Of course, they were nervous, but this experience helps them tremendously in getting prepared for ‘a real interview.’ I am very happy to be part of yet another educational opportunity for these teacher candidates.”

Recent OHIO graduates and teacher candidates Chantel Landrum and Earl Johnson both participated in the mock interviews and said the experience was beneficial and worthwhile.

“It was helpful to ask them questions at the end of the interview to gain more knowledge about them and I also asked for feedback of how I did in the interview,” Landrum said. “Since these were mock interviews, I was able to reflect on the feedback for when I go into a real interview.”

Landrum is planning to substitute teach in her community until she secures a full-time teaching position.

“I spoke with multiple administrators and curriculum directors from many different districts,” Johnson, who is also seeking full-time employment said. “Many were willing to not only give advice on the interviewing process but career advice as well.”

Following the mock interviews, students and visiting administrators had a catered lunch and a Q&A session.

For more information on OHIO Chillicothe’s education programs, click here.