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About the On-Campus Interviewing (OCI) Program

2020-2021:

  • Due to the pandemic, in-person interviews will not be held on campus, and employers will not be travelling to campus to conduct interviews.
  • All interviews will be by phone or video (Zoom, etc.).
  • Career and Professional Development will continue to facilitate pre-scheduled interviews between students and employers.
  • Students who want opportunities to interview should continue to apply for jobs and internships through Handshake.

Pre-covid: OCI meant students didn't have to travel to an employer's location for a first interview, because employers based elsewhere travelled to campus to recruit students.

What OCI was:

  • Through OCI, 250-300 employers visited campus each year to interview students for post-grad jobs, internships and co-ops.
  • The employers were located throughout the United States, with many based in the mid-Atlantic or southeast regions of the U.S., and urban regions of Virginia. They included for-profit businesses, government agencies, and nonprofit organizations.
  • Employers often booked an interview date many months in advance, as part of their strategy of recruiting college students.
  • Employers invested time and resources to travel to campus. Most made one campus interview visit per year. This made interview opportunities convenient for students.
  • OCI interviews were conducted in interview rooms in the Smith Career Center.
  • OCI spanned 80 days during 2019-20120. Interviews occurred during nine weeks of fall semester 2019, and seven weeks of spring semester 2020.

What OCI wasn't:

OCI was not a job fair.

  • Job fairs are one- or two-day events with brief conversations between students and employer;  some included interviews for all or part of a day.
  • In contrast, OCI spanned 80 days of interviewing during the academic year. In 2018-2019, over 3100 students had 5656 interviews through OCI.

On-campus interviewing was not about on-campus jobs.

  • A Virginia Tech department with an on-campus job could post their jobs in Handshake. For the interview location, it was much easier for them to interview students in their own office.
  • Employers who did not have a location in or near Blacksburg used OCI because it provided them facilities and support to conduct interviews when they travelled to Blacksburg.

How OCI worked for students:

  • Each year there was a set schedule of OCI dates and deadlines.
  • Students applied for each job of interest 3-4 weeks prior to the interview date.
  • Students should only apply for positions and employers that truly interest you.
  • Never sign up for an interview for practice. This is unethical, and is fully explained in expectations of students in the Position Statement about Campus Recruiting.
  • It kicked off very early in fall semester! The first application deadline for fall semester 2019 was Sep. 1. See how students can participate in OCI.

OCI policies and participation:

Before you participated in OCI, it was your responsibility to read and understand:

How many employers and students participate?
What is student participation by college?

Could alumni participate in OCI?

  • Recent grads might have found jobs of interest. Most employers who used OCI were seeking recent or upcoming graduates. For a graduate who did not live near Blacksburg, it would have been more practical to contact employers and request an interview at the employer's site.