Are you ready, Presidential Scholars? This weekend is a big accomplishment for you, and it’s also a big opportunity! Current HPU Presidential Scholars know what it’s like being in your shoes and have provided their best advice on what to wear, what to pack and insider tips on making the most of your time here at Presidential Weekend.
What should I wear for my interviews?
We recommend Business Casual attire for Friday Night Dinner and Business Professional for Saturday interviews. If at all possible, we recommend you wear a suit to your interview (however, don’t feel that you need to buy a suit if you don’t have one!) Business professional is a great way to put your best foot forward and give yourself an air of confidence. We understand that “business professional” can have multiple interpretations, so let us help you out.
Ladies, you want to dress conservative and confident while looking polished and sharp. Gentleman, look the way your mom makes you dress to get a picture with her on Mother’s Day. Don’t forget to check the weather to be prepared for temperature and potential precipitation. Remember that everyone will be walking around campus attending various sessions, so you’ll want to wear comfortable shoes for the entire weekend.
What should my parent/guest wear?
Attire for guests is business casual – a little more relaxed, but still nice. Women can wear more casual slacks or skirts with their blouses. Men do not have to wear ties. Khakis and a collared or polo shirt will suffice. Everyone will want to wear comfortable shoes, as you will do a lot of walking over the weekend.
Do some basic research on the Presidential Scholarship Program so you’re familiar with it. That way, when the time comes in your interview for you to ask questions to the professor interviewing you, you will be able to bypass some of the smaller questions and be able ask more substantial questions regarding specific majors, minors, or other important information you would like to know about. This will also allow you more time to give elaborate answers to the questions that you are asked.
If you’re not too familiar with campus, take our Virtual Tour before Presidential Weekend. This way you can keep your stress levels low by eliminating the worry of showing up to the wrong interview building. You will receive your interview schedule at check-in on Saturday.
The weather can be unpredictable in North Carolina, so make sure to check the weather report while you are packing for your important weekend. Nothing is worse than leaving the umbrella at home, and then waking up on the big day and being greeted with rain clouds.
It is always a good idea to arrive at your interview location 10-15 minutes before your scheduled time. Don’t be afraid to ask a faculty member, student, or anyone wearing an HPU nametag for directions— I assure you everyone will be more than happy to point you in the right direction! This will give you a few minutes to collect your thoughts, straighten your tie, smooth your skirt and take a few deep breaths.
The Presidential Scholarship interviews are a two-way street when it comes to listening. Your interviewers want to hear all about you, your interests and your ambitions. However, it is important for you to learn also. Don’t be afraid to ask some questions of your own, and write down notes to look at later. Focus on listening and make an active attempt to be present and not to glaze over.
Following up with your interviewers is a great way to show them just how committed you are to your cause. A simple thank you note can make all the difference, and can really give them a chance to get to know the real you.
Keep your questions coming on the HPU Class of 2020 Facebook group! We will gladly answer them and help you get the most out of your Presidential Scholarship Weekend!