The following Berkeley / Haas interview report was submitted to Clear Admit by a Round 2 applicant. Good luck to them!
I interviewed with a Haas alumnus on February 29, 2016 for a Round 2 interview. The alumnus and I met at a coffee shop in Beijing, China (which, frankly, was a bit too loud for my taste). We grabbed two waters and took a seat in the back couch area.
It was a completely blind interview, where the interviewer didn’t even look at my résumé – he asked for a copy of it which I, fortunately, had with me (so make sure to bring a couple of copies!). The interviewer is basically paired up with you once you are granted an interview with Haas. Haas will email you a schedule where you put in your location and, a day later, an interviewer will be matched with you. You then email the interviewer and set up a time and place to conduct it.
Prior to the interview, I read up on all the Clear Admit interview reports, which prepped me enough for the interview. As expected (and stated all over the interview reports) the interview was very conversational – it didn’t feel like an interview, but more like a conversation about my future and what I hope to do in the next couple of years.
The bad part was that the questions were sort of out of the ordinary – there were no leadership or teamwork questions. None of the questions that I read about online and prepared for were not asked – the interviewer almost went rogue and asked his own questions. The questions were as follows:
• Introduce yourself and run through your résumé
• Why your current job? (I switched in September to a new job in a new industry)
• Why did you switch jobs so many times (3 times in 4 years)? (Then he goes on to tell me that he would never do such a thing and has stayed with the same company for 6+ years)
• Why do I want to work for a nonprofit? (Then goes on to tell me that he would never work for a nonprofit and that I should reconsider my career path and focus on a more profit-oriented industry)
• How do I plan to support myself and make a strong career? (Which I thought was awfully blunt – basically telling me that I will be a failure in the nonprofit world)
• What do I know about Haas – Why Haas?
• Are there a lot of Haas graduates who now work in the nonprofit industry? (Which, I think, should be a question I ask him as an alumnus of the school!)
After being bombarded with questions and concerns about my future, the conversation eased up a bit and we discussed the economy, travelling, and San Francisco (which he said is “full of hippies”). It just surprised me how personal the interviewer got. It almost felt like I was being interviewed and scolded by my parents, telling me that my decisions, past and future, are terrible and that I need to rethink everything I’ve done so far. The interviewer was very traditional – worked his way up the corporate ladder for decades with the same company and went back for his MBA to boost his resume, etc.
To be honest, I’m not sure I feel after this interview. I was hoping it would have gone a lot smoother, but I guess I just got matched with someone that I didn’t get along with.
Still waiting on a decision now, but I’m praying that they don’t put a lot of weight on this interview. Haas is my DREAM school and I’m praying every day for an admissions call.
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