Thursday, June 15, 2006

Interview done!

I can finally heave a sigh of relief. It was relaxed in the interview room, but I felt tense. As usual, I felt myself heating up... when I walked out of the room, I bet my basal metabolic rate had rocketed, for my eyes, ears and brain felt fried. But I still felt I kept my ground and held it well.

There were a number of questions that I remember, those that I expected:
  1. Can you explain to us how your previous experience with those projects tie in with this post?
    1. I spoke about how I honed my management skills in those two projects, and how strong management skills are needed to help run an election properly.
  2. Can you illustrate an example of a time when you had a decision that was challenged?
    1. I spoke about the first push in those projects, speaking about the conflict between conservative spending and taking a bigger risk.
  3. Tell us more about the projects that you organized in high school.
  4. Do you have any ideas on how to improve the elections?
    1. I replied about voter cynicism as the leading factor causing low voter turnout, and I spoke concretely about investigating past causes of low voter turnout. Then I added on with ideas such as:
      1. Giving the Elections Committee more control and integration over the elections process.
      2. Advising candidates to field statements that clearly list out their platform, rather than just some general statements.
      3. Discouraging things like letting the 'Fire Hydrant' run for elections, for it insults both the elections process, and insults the other candidates who truly want to run for office.
      4. Informing the student body about the importance of elections; we're a democratic society, and democracy is in our culture, to the extent that we take it for granted. That's how voter cynicism, and things like the Fire Hydrant, comes about. So I believe that going back to fundamental principles, such as freedom of speech, personal rights, and collective rights, as well as emphasizing the importance of a democratic culture, is very important in increasing voter turnout.
    2. Sounds like I'm speaking about my platform. Hahaha... ;-)
Some questions I didn't expect came up, such as:
  1. How does this job fit in with your career goals?
    1. I answered this by replying that I didn't see this as a jumping board to my future career; rather I saw this as an opportunity to learn certain universal skills and principles that can be applied in other fields, esp. things like conflict resolution, picking out irregularities etc.
  2. One of the very first questions: How did you come to know about this job, and what motivated you to apply for it?
    1. I have to admit, I was a bit surprised this quesiton was asked, but I replied with the notion of serving the UBC community as the most important thing. After all, elections determine our AMS Exco, as well as the Senate and Board of Governers student reps. These three bodies serve to provide the official bridge between the students and the school admin, and function as the collective voice of the student body, so it is important to ensure that the elected candidates are not elected because they are able to impress voters with their antics, but rather because of their substantial and concrete platforms on which they will progress. Hence, running the elections such that these candidates get in, rather than the most popular based on some notion of "fellow DOTA player" or "the best clown in town", is heavily tied in with serving the community.
Well, whatever it is, I tried my best. The results come out the following week, and I await it eagerly. If I get the post, I will give my 110% for it; if I don't, there's other ways for me to deliver on my resolution to serve the UBC community.

Wow. On reflection, this is an abnormally long post for me. ;-)

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