An informational interview

What is an informational interview? Read this article on Informational Interviewing (Links to an external site.), the process and the purpose, to help you prepare. Once you have an understanding of how they work, you will connect with an industry professional in the area of your choice to conduct an informational interview/ informal conversation about their role and career field.

PART 1: CONNECT WITH A PROFESSIONAL
Reach out to a professional in the industry of your career interest to set up an Informational Interview (about 15-30 min long). The actual interview should be done over the phone or video conference (not via email communication). This will give you an opportunity to have an organic conversation and dialogue.

You can utilize the networking strategy of your choice: LinkedIn, Badger Bridge, email/call a friend of the family, etc. Do not choose a direct family member (do not meet with a brother or parent). Once you’ve scheduled the informational interview, prepare questions in advance. Here are some suggested questions to get you started:

What skills are needed to be successful in the industry?
What education and/or certificates are necessary for this type of role?
What are some current issues or trends in the field? How might these trends impact the industry moving forward?
What does career progression look like within your organization?
What advice do you have for someone who is interested in this field?
Come up with additional questions of your own to ask – questions that will help you figure out if their role/company would be a good fit for you
PART 2: REFLECT
Write and submit a 2-page summary of your informational interview that discusses the important takeaways and insights that you gained from the interview. The paper should be double-spaced, 10-12 pt font.

Respond to the following prompts in your paper:

Provide the name and describe the role of the professional you interviewed.
What appealed to you most about this job/career path? What surprised you?
What did you like the least?
What did you learn about this person’s career path that might be applicable to you? How might you use the information you learned in this interview in your career search or beginning your career?
PART 3: ARTIFACT
Include an artifact from the informational interview. Examples: screen shot of a FaceTime or Zoom meeting, email or LinkedIn communication confirming the interview, etc). The artifact is something that demonstrates you conducted the informational interview. Provide a brief explanation of the artifact demonstrating where/how you connected.

Here’s a video overview of this assignment if you’d like more information:

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