“Mr. Assem, it’s your turn.” About bloody time he thought. He stands up and follows her in, trying as he might to walk with a confident stride. She tells him that she recognizes him from around the office, they joke around for a while. This being the US embassy, he is extra cautious with his word choices and his humour, these days you can’t so much as sneeze without breaking some kind of law or offending someone.
She reviews his application, asks him clarification questions, and generally is nice to him albeit making him sweat it out on some issues. She brings up possible areas where she could have found fault with his application, yet implied that she is letting them slide. She grilled him on the information, validating every single point, ensuring that his on the spot answers match that on the form.
Finally someone comes to claim her, she is asked to follow them in to a room with a spectacular view. She is joined by two women, a local and a foreigner, potential boss and bigger boss. They start going through her CV, asking her to take them through it. Telling her she changes jobs too much. She is nervous as hell, her throat is dry and her palms are sweaty. She sends them to get her a drink of water. Her answers range from arrogant confidence in her ability to do the job, to unprofessional star struck jibberish associated with the fact that it is the IFC. She laughs nervously at parts and makes smart comments at others. She speaks quickly, and her pace only increases as she goes, a reflection of her nervous state and her excessive inherent need to impress that had just shifted into overdrive. The interview is a blur!
She leaves the red room adorned with giant plasma screens to follow the lad with the paperclip and the cute British accent into the bright classroom. She sits down at a desk and for a moment forgets the time and place and is overwhelmed with school days nostalgia; the smells and sounds of a childhood in Tripoli. She looks up at a panel of 3 individuals, 2 she has met before and a fresh face. They talk to her about her plans, they inquire about why LSE, they listen to her articulate her vision for herself and the country. She comes across as confident and assertive. They look at her GMAT and TOEFL scores. They try to indirectly attest to her willingness to return to the mother land. They tell her that they would revert to her shortly with a response.
Running the entire interview through your mind.
Heading back to reality.
Obsessing over what you had said, what you should have said and what you still can’t believe you actually did say.
The waiting… again.
The trials and tribulations of being The Applicant!