The privilege of being asked to be on an interview / presentation panel

I opened my email to read ‘you have been nominated to sit in on the interview panels at university’….. ummm ‘what… haha! Me? Sitting in on an interview panel and providing feedback on the candidates for a role?’ For confidentiality reasons I can not go into the role this was for and names etc. But I can tell you how this experience has enhanced my learning as a student.

Firstly, thank you to our amazing university for giving me such opportunities that are shaping me into the nurse I have dreamed of becoming.

I arrived at university very keen and early, around an hour early; punctuality is my specialty. I was a mixture of feelings, excited and nervous of the unknown. I made my way to the room, and sat down with two other students and five of the university’s staff. I sat thinking ‘I am just a student, I can not believe that I am here and my feedback is going to count?!’ I felt honoured and proud, for these few hours I felt like I was more than JUST a student. My opinion mattered to someone.

I experienced how it felt being on the other side of the table, not the one being interviewed but the one who has to judge these lovely people on their presentation. I felt so nervous for each of them. Presentations are something I, myself need to work on. So to be giving feedback on someone else was two things; firstly, I did not feel I should be judging someone when I know that my own skills need work and secondly, I felt so nervous for these candidates! Knowing that feeling of dread and having to talk in front of a small group of people. I could empathise with them a lot.

BUT upon saying this, it was a fantastic insight. It was actually nice to see the difference between each person. How they all had their same topic to discuss but all so different in the way they presented it. They all had pros and cons to each. And whoever has to make that final decision is going to have one tough job to do!

It just goes to show that everyone is different. Everyone has their own style and ways of doing and saying things. Different terminology, different speaking skills, body language and ideas. Furthermore, it was really helpful to see all of this from another side so that I can see what presentations should look like. And it has definitely made me more aware on my own presentations and that I CAN see where I go wrong myself and I can build on this and improve ready for my presentations in future.

So thank you again for giving me this opportunity. It is one I will never forget, like many from the university.

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34 years old and finally achieving my dream of becoming a nurse.

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