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Speed Interviewing

February 8, 2011, 9:50 PM by Angela Kennecke

Speed Interviewing
SIOUX FALLS, SD -  
You've no doubt heard about speed dating. You get a couple of minutes to make a good first impression and hopefully a second date. Now a Sioux Falls advertising agency is using that concept to fill its internship positions this summer.

These potential interns are nervously awaiting their chance to make a two minute impression.

College Senior Erin Wiese is among the 75 hopefuls to land one of five internship spots at Advertising Agency Lawrence and Schiller.

"I go to school in Minnesota and my family is in South Dakota," Wiese said.

And just like speed dating, speed interviewing can be a little nerve wracking.

"A little bit, knowing you only have five minutes with someone to make that quick first impression and to get in everything you have to say about yourself and how to highlight yourself; that aspect is very intimidating," Wiese said.

There's a lot at stake for these college students in a very tight employment market. An internship is practically a requirement for landing a job these days.

"Over 20 percent started their careers with an internship of some sort with agency. And so internships are important for students to get a foot in the door and important for us as a company, Billie Jo Waara of Lawrence and Schiller said.

For the agency, it's helps them put faces to the applicants to narrow down the field. And in this high-tech world, one interview is even by Skype, organizers are also hoping the students learn communication skills in the process.

"First impressions are so important and in this world of social media where we live and everything is so digital.  You can't lesson the value of face-to-face or interpersonal relationships that you have in today's business world," Waara said.

And even if Wiese doesn't get the job, she see the value in the experience.

"I have a ton of competition, especially being a senior in college it's a bit more pressure. I'm looking at this just like anything else, more experience, to get in there and say, 'Hey I did this I went and tried this.'  So I'm walking away saying, 'I know what it's now like to do a speed dating interview,'" Wiese said.

While the ad agency will need five interns this summer, only a couple of those people will be hired on full time after the internship ends.

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