MOUNT OLIVE — “Practice does, in fact, make perfect,” said Dean of Tillman School of Business Kathy T. Best.
For that reason, each year the University of Mount Olive’s Tillman School of Business provides opportunities for students to gain practical experience. This year’s mock job interviews were conducted as a part of a human resources management class with assistance from corporate professionals from Mt. Olive Pickle Company.
Sheila Coats, general accountant for Mt. Olive Pickle Company and a 1997 UMO graduate, along with Glenda Linton, hiring supervisor at Mt. Olive Pickle Company, were the lead interviewers. Linton began her career in human resources more than 22 years ago while working as an HR assistant for Flextronics in Youngsville. Having worked as a benefits and hiring supervisor with Mt. Olive Pickle since 2014, she is heavily involved in benefit management, recruiting, onboarding and employee relations.
Coats, a Faison native, has more than 30 years of experience in the areas of accounting, business and management, 18 of which have been with Mt. Olive Pickle as a general accountant. She volunteers as a TSB Ambassador while serving on the TSB Advisory Board. As an ambassador, Coats provides a connection to the broader business community while allowing an ongoing exchange of information and ideas in providing support and advice in relation to existing academic programs.
“We are so very appreciative of these corporate professionals taking the time to come out and assist our students with this vital part of planning for their future careers,” said Dr. Doug Ward, TSB associate dean. “Interviews can be daunting. However, by showing our students how to prepare and plan for success, it reduces the anxiety level of the interview process.”
Three TSB students participated in the mock interview process. Their classroom peers observed and evaluated the process. Important lessons revealed were researching the company in which candidates are interviewing, being strategic about expressing experiences gained and practicing a variety of potential interview scenarios and questions.
“We also covered things like appropriate dress and writing thank you notes following the interview process,” Ward added.
About the process, one student said it best, “This experience has improved my interview technique and built my confidence level!”
— From University of Mount Olive Public Relations