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ckim09ckim09 27 replies20 threads Junior Member
edited July 2008 in Barnard College
My dad and I are visiting Barnard in a couple weeks, and I am really excited but nervous about the interview...

- Type of questions/type of interviewer?
- What kind of attire should one wear?
- Any personal experiences with the interview process/advice?
- How much does it weigh into the admissions process?

Thanks so much! :)
edited July 2008
7 replies
Post edited by ckim09 on
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Replies to: Interview

  • mythmommythmom 8292 replies13 threads Senior Member
    I don't know if all Barnard interviews are like this, but my D's interviewer was a student, a rising senior.

    She wore very casual clothes, summer in NYC is hot. Of course, no tank top or flip flops. I think she wore a little summer skirt with a summer shirt.

    The questions were very casual -- no formal script; they had a conversation.

    I don't think their admissions interview carries too much weight except to demonstrate interest. I think it's wonderful that you are doing one.

    Advice? Have an interesting book on hand that you are in the middle of reading. Barnard is very much a community of intellectual young women. As it happened, my D was reading the same book as her interviewer -- Vanity Fair by Thackerey -- because the movie was about to come out. They talked about that quite a bit. They also talked about D's boyfriend. I'm not quite sure how that came up.

    D said it was her best interview and that it was like talking to a good friend.

    Good luck!!

    Oh, and D will be a senior this year, so yes, she was admitted.
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  • churchmusicmomchurchmusicmom 3980 replies79 threads Senior Member
    Also, I would suggest that you think of questions you have for your interviewer, after learning as much as you can about Barnard from the website, of course. What extracurriculars interest you? How will you fit into the community there? Place yourself there and then decide what you have questions about. Use this opportunity to really discover all you can about Barnard!

    Mythmom's description of her d's interview was a lot like my d's. She and her student interviewer talked about their mutual interest in dance. My d is also a rising senior this year...

    Best to you!
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  • panda2panda2 54 replies6 threads Junior Member
    i found my interview to be quite pleasant. i dressed casual-formal (flats, jcrew slacks, nice top). my interviewer was a rising senior, and we talked about our mutual activity, yearbook. we also talked about upcoming movies, what i do at school, and hilary clinton. if you get an admissions director, i'm sure your interview might be different though, so come prepared to talk about more serious things. ;)

    and i agree with churchmusicmom, have questions. not simple ones like the size of the student body, but more subjective things that could make a good conversation between the two of you, and show you're looking at the school seriously. for example, ask her what her major is (if she's a student of course), ask about her experience with dorms, ny, what she personally loves about barnard, etc. and of course, if you have a question that you didn't find answered in your investigations, ask it.

    i don't know how important the interview is in regards to other things, but i think it's in the supplemental category. i think it will push your chances.
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  • ckim09ckim09 27 replies20 threads Junior Member
    Thanks you for all your comments! They have been really helpful!
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  • aube88aube88 308 replies49 threads Member
    They'll probably ask "why Barnard" and "why a women's college."
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  • primefactorprimefactor 415 replies6 threads Member
    I do alumnae interviews for the college, and my number 1 piece of advice is to BE YOURSELF. It's totally fine if you're not politically active or president or editor of whatever, tell me about what you're actually interested in. There is no "right" set of hobbies, we just want to know that you have a sincere interest in SOMETHING and are capable of expressing yourself well. There's nothing worse than being in an interview where the applicant keeps trying to recite her resume or give rehearsed speeches about "why class X was my favorite class" and then find out at the end, when I ask her if there's anything else she'd like me to know about her, that she spent the summer after sophomore year at her grandmother's house in Pennsylvania Dutch country helping her make and sell apple butter or something, which she now does on her own to earn extra spending money. Please, please be confident that whatever it is you do, that thing is interesting and worthwhile. If you don't believe it, why should we?

    As everyone else noted, you'll probably be asked a lot of standard questions: why a women's college, how did you first hear about Barnard, what do you do with your free time, what's your favorite/most recent book or movie, that kind of thing. The goal is more to poke around, find an interesting subject and have a conversation that both sides find engaging than to write down your responses to set questions on a form. Sometimes I like to ask weirder questions if I'm getting a lot of rehearsed answers and no obvious way to break into a normal chat, like if she could instantly be 100% proficient at any activity, what would she pick?

    And do have a question or two, because you'll probably be asked if you have any questions. I personally like ones that ask more about my experiences, whether I had an internship, what my friends studied or are doing now, that kind of thing. Answering questions about how easy it is to meet and befriend Columbia students or how common study abroad is can get boring.

    Anyway, the more honest, comfortable, and real you are, the more likely you are to appear mature, confident, interesting, and well-spoken. And we like that. :)
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  • churchmusicmomchurchmusicmom 3980 replies79 threads Senior Member
    Ahh, primefactor! As always, such great advice. And may i say it's so great to see you here!!!
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