A couple of days ago I watched a video on “College Interview Tips.” Number one was to bring questions for the interviewer. Number two was to turn off your cell phone. Number three was to refuse the offer of something to drink. What??
I watched the woman in the video holding an empty paper cup. “Where are you going to put this?” she asked. “On the interviewer’s desk?” She frowned. “Are you going to hold it the whole time?” She shook her head. “What if you get nervous or move the wrong way?” She tipped the cup over. “Don’t accept anything to drink.” OMG. What if you’re thirsty???
It’s okay to accept a drink if you need one. College interviews cause nerves, and nerves can cause dry mouth. Always bring a bottle of water with you to the interview. If you get a dry mouth you’re covered. Plus, if you get stuck on a question a sip can give you a little extra time to think.
Obviously, think twice if there’s no place to put the cup and you’ll have to hold it. If the interviewer’s desk is the only available space, ask if it’s okay to put the cup there. Interviewers aren’t ogres and they’re not going to record that you were gauche enough to ask to park your cup — which they have been kind enough to give you — on the only available surface in the room. Certainly don’t put it at your feet; you’ll forget it’s there and that’s trouble. Now, if you know you’re clumsy, accepting that drink may not be such a good idea. But it’s not a cut and dry “never.”
Take a bottle of water to your college interview. But if you need something to drink, accept the offer.