|By Nikelaos (Nikelaos) on Monday, February 09, 2004 - 09:51 pm: Edit|
I'm kind of having a little argument with my mother about whether or not I should bring a small gift for the interviewer.
I know it sounds really weird, but it's a part of my culture to never go to someone else's house without a small gift (typically, flowers, some sweets or something small like that).
Although I completely understand my mom's good intentions, I'm kind of debating over the whole matter. would it seem kind of out of place? Because I also realise that this could come off just a tad like kissing up to the interviewer. Which is not an image I would like to send off, at all.
Although it would be completely out of sincerity and out of a cultural "habit" of sorts, I understand that this can be taken as a very tacky kissing-ass gesture.
|By Stargazrlilychk (Stargazrlilychk) on Monday, February 09, 2004 - 09:54 pm: Edit|
what is the culture? i would give the person something small, but related to your culture (so that they know it's a cultural gesture, not an ass-kissing gesture). like if you're chinese, bring a bag of fortune cookies or something (i don't knaow) haha
|By Reba616 (Reba616) on Monday, February 09, 2004 - 10:01 pm: Edit|
I've gotta go with stargazr on that... I'd be thrilled and flattered if someone brought a gift to my house related to their culture. Go for it, explain to him the tradition, it would be a good conversation starter too.
|By Nikelaos (Nikelaos) on Monday, February 09, 2004 - 10:02 pm: Edit|
LMAO... yes, fortune cookies in a chinese family would be a great idea, considering they were thought up in the US ;)
But yeah. I'm half Italian and half Japanese... and in fact, both cultures have this "cultural habit" of not going to a host's house empty-handed. I was thinking about baking them some small italian sweets or something, as our family would do for other people. But yeah, thanks!
|By Nikelaos (Nikelaos) on Monday, February 09, 2004 - 10:06 pm: Edit|
btw stargazr and reba... the only problem I see in this, really, is that I'd think the whole thing would be a bit too, "oohh look look, I bling exotic gifts flom East, I'm exotic, accept me!" haha...
I just want to to do this as a kind gesture, not even so much a "Show and tell" thing. eh, it might end up like that if I do bring something ultra-culture specific though. Which can be good or bad, I guess. *shrugs*
|By Ariesathena (Ariesathena) on Monday, February 09, 2004 - 10:12 pm: Edit|
As an alumni interviewer, I would feel odd if someone were to bring a gift. The purpose of inviting the student to my home is for business, not social pleasure. While "social gestures" such as politeness and clean clothes are still expected in a business setting, bringing along sweets is not. Personally, I will not go to someone's house empty-handed (esp. for something like a party or a dinner), but I would still find it odd if a student were to bring something over.
The best, concise advice I can give you in regards to alumni interviews is to treat them like business contacts. Think that for manners, dress, gifts, etc.
|By Nikelaos (Nikelaos) on Monday, February 09, 2004 - 10:26 pm: Edit|
ariesathena- I definitely agree that the college interview should be taken more as a professional interview if anything, but even in such circumstances, in my cultural background (especially on my mother's Japanese side) it is considered somewhat standard to still bring something, even in a business-related situation.
I'm definitely grateful for your opinion as an interviewer though, and for your view on the matter. I acknowledge that (even if it is explained) a gift might nevertheless seem quite out of place for someone who is only accustomed to receiving gifts solely in relationships on a personal plane.
again, thanks! and out of curiosity, who do you interview for? (I understand if this information must remain confidential, though, so feel free not to answer ;) )
|By Christinew87 (Christinew87) on Tuesday, February 10, 2004 - 12:43 am: Edit|
lol yea, these really short chinese triplets at my school get so mad whenever people associate the chinese with fortune cookies. Its quite funny.
|By Northstarmom (Northstarmom) on Tuesday, February 10, 2004 - 01:42 am: Edit|
I'm an alumna interviewer for Harvard, and I agree with Ariesathena. I would feel very uncomfortable.
While I think it's great when students are rooted in their culture, I also think it's important for them not to do anything that could be misinterpreted. In the US, bringing gifts to interviews could be experienced by the interviewer as an attempt at bribery or brownnosing.
Instead of a gift, I strongly suggest sending a thank-you note.
|By Stargazrlilychk (Stargazrlilychk) on Tuesday, February 10, 2004 - 01:48 am: Edit|
a thank you note with some fortune cookies? haha, just kidding.
|By Eliel (Eliel) on Tuesday, February 10, 2004 - 02:16 am: Edit|
just bring a positive attitude and-and don't forget youself too!
|By Soozievt (Soozievt) on Tuesday, February 10, 2004 - 10:29 am: Edit|
I will chime in as an alumni interviewer as well. I would suggest not to bring a gift. I understand your cultural practices but the general practice is that such gifts are appropriate in social situations, such as visiting as a guest in someone's home, but not in a business situation, particularly NOT in an interview situation. In the latter situation, it is almost a feeling of a bribe to win someone over. Instead, as Northstarmom suggests, to really extend your politeness, a thank you note afterwards is quite appropriate. I have only received one ever in all the years I have interviewed students. My own daughter, who is a senior and has done several interviews this year and has one last one coming up, has sent personalized thank yous to every person who has interviewed her (or for that matter, anyone who has met with her in the college process, be it a student host, professor, coach, interviewer). That is what I would suggest you do as well.
|By Nikelaos (Nikelaos) on Tuesday, February 10, 2004 - 11:28 am: Edit|
Thank you very much for all of your opinions!
Phew. I'm glad I asked, because I definitely don't want to come off as brown-nosing... Thanks again!
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