I, like most people, have a lot of facebook "friends" who are people I know casually through activities or organizations that were once important to me, but who I don't actually hang out with or talk to on a regular basis. Fortunately for me, many of these people are awesome and I'm lucky to know them!
One such person, who shall remain nameless, participated in MMI interviews last year, got into the program s/he applied to, helped her/his school with the organizing of MMIs this year, AND was willing to take some time this evening to chat with me about what to expect!
Of course, the details are all very confidential... I couldn't ask about scenarios or questions or anything like that. But all the same s/he had some great suggestions from an insider's point of view and I will be eternally grateful for his/her kindness!!
Here are some of the things s/he had to say:
- You can't really prepare for the MMI. It's intended to put you off balance and force you to think on your feet. They don't want your canned answers, they want to see how you do under pressure.
- Having said that bit about you can't really prepare... it is really important to know yourself! Spend some time reflecting. What are your strengths/weaknesses? Why do you want to be an OT? Why do you want to get into this program in particular?
- Then just try to relax and go with the flow. Be yourself! Let the assessor see who you really are, in all your awesomeness :) You can't fake being something you're not, so trust that who you are is exactly what they are looking for and let that shine through.
- If you leave a station feeling like you messed up... shake it off and move on!! The next person won't know that you just stuck your foot in your mouth at the last station unless you walk in all flustered like you just stuck your foot in your mouth at the last station, lol. Remember: you will be evaluated on your overall performance, not on one assessment alone.
- Try not to be too rigid in your thinking. Yes, they want you to take a side on an issue and defend it sometimes... but do so in a way that shows you can consider other points of view.
- Don't wear black or blue. Everyone thinks of these two colors when they are getting dressed in their serious interview clothes. But at the end of the day when the assessors say to each other "Hey, what'd you think of that person in the black suit?" They'll be like... "Dude! There were 100 people in black suits!" Instead, go with a nice brown or grey. Accent with a little color. On the flip side of that... don't be TOO memorable. You don't want to stick out like a sore thumb.
And that was about it, as far as tips went!
Now, for what to expect:
- You don't have to stand there and talk for the whole 8 minutes *phew*! You'll walk in, introduce yourself (unless it's a scenario where you're acting out a scene), then sit down and talk. Give your full answer, but don't ramble just to fill time. They have questions to prompt you if you finish early and there's no penalty for being prompted... it's the quality of your answer, not the duration that counts.
- Most people don't sleep the night before their interview. Don't worry about it. Everyone else will look like a zombie too ;)
- The best thing you can do for yourself is to relax and not over-think it. The MMI is designed to reveal who you really are, what your attitude is like, whether you're a good fit for the program. So, let them see the best, optimal you! Try not to be the dry-mouthed, anxiety ridden, trying to figure out the "right" answer you. Be fabulous-you!
I hope that this helps you to be the best You you can be on interview day!!
(Hopefully) Your Future Classmate, SweetPea