How do you offer a handshake over a Zoom interview? In all the mandatory workplace modules I took at university — all with cheery titles like “Career Power Up!” or “Absolute Basics for the Office” — none could have prepared me for graduating into a pandemic. Neither the students nor the faculty, I am sure, could have expected a global disruption of the scale we have seen over the past year.
So, while the interviewing tips were well-meaning and helpful (“Offer a firm handshake”; “Maintain eye contact”; and “Say you’re passionate and driven, and try to believe it”), they all but went out of the window when the “circuit breaker” rolled around.
What did remain, however, was looming unemployment. With our final semester unceremoniously cut short, the Class of 2020 went out in search of job opportunities, armed only with dated interview etiquette and virtual proof of a degree that would not be conferred in person until months later.