Interviews: Tips from Chevening Scholars

Interviews: Tips from Chevening Scholars

Hannah Lines

Hannah Lines

International Liaison Officer

The global interview period will soon begin and many of you have been asking for tips on how to best present yourselves to the panel. Who better to give advice than those who have walked in your shoes? We asked current Chevening Scholars to give us their best interview tips—we hope they help you in preparing for yours!

Keep your composure

‘Be well composed, eloquent and succinct in articulating your answers. Make sure you know what your career goals are. Answers to questions related to any aspects of your application should flow naturally. Be apt at responding to some general knowledge questions. You will think better if you don’t panic. Just be yourself and you will definitely make it.’

– Clementina Njang Yong

Timing is everything

‘If you are traveling to attend your interview, make sure you arrive a day before to your destination. It will keep you stress-free as you get enough sleep and rest the night before your interview. You should also consider exploring the right route to the British embassy/high commission to ensure you arrive on time.’

– Rania Sameh Kaadan

Believe in yourself

‘Be confident and keep in mind you’ve reached this stage because you are a leader! So don’t consider it as an interview but a meeting in which you have some mutual interests with your potential partners. As much as you would have advantages by being awarded this scholarship, you can provide positive contribution and influence, not only in your home country but to the global Chevening community!’

Mahdy Raie

Be honest

‘The interview is the best chance for them to get a flavour of the real you and what sets you apart from others, so be careful not to be too brief or try to guess what they want to hear. They will be able to tell if you are not being honest.’

– Camila Adames

Stand out from the crowd

‘Make the interviewers remember you. Achieve this not only by making a good impression (consider that most of the other candidates will also make a good impression) but by sticking out for a particular reason. Achieve this by being original, always in accordance with your personality and in line with what they know about you from the application. Try to forget that you are in an interview and even feel free to ask them questions about the process. This will not only restate your interest in Chevening but will also reflect humbleness.’

– Sylvia van der Laat

Listen up

‘Listen to the question carefully and make sure you answer it. Take a moment to think it through before answering, and don’t hesitate to ask for clarification if you need it.’

– Alfonc Rakaj

Practice makes perfect

‘For me, what worked is setting up a mock interview with friends/family who you know will critically assess your answers and general body language. Practice until you feel confident in answering the questions. Also do some research on possible Chevening interview questions. That will help with the practice. Don’t be afraid to talk to yourself while walking on the streets or in the shower. This is a powerful reflection exercise, especially on areas where you need improvement.’

– Mukami Grace

Know where you’re going

‘Clarity is important. I didn’t make it the first round of interviews because I gave a varied answer on my choice of career path once I finished the programme. The second time around, I made it clear why I wanted to do the degree, exactly what I wanted to go to school to learn and exactly what I would use my education for once I graduated. Made it through the second one!’

– Khairun Nisa Mohamed Zabidi

Learn from your mistakes

‘I believe it is okay to outline both your failures (if we can call them so) and achievements during the conversation. This shows the candidate is keen to learn from past mistakes. And it is okay to feel nervous! The panel of interviewers understand this and make you feel at ease soon after you enter the room.’

– Ritwika Mitra

Don’t fidget

‘Keep your hands under the table. On a serious note, when you’re nervous, drink the water offered. It helps a lot.’

– Namaganda Rita Anastacia

For more information about interviews, please visit our guidance page. Also keep an eye out on social media as we will be sharing more interview tips throughout the global interview period.

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