USF long-term care students learn real-life interview skills from health care administrators

The School of Aging Studies in the University of South Florida College of Behavioral & Community Sciences will host its third annual mock interviews for its long-term care students on Nov. 27. The session is designed to prepare students who will be seeking administrative jobs in the long-term care industry.

“We want to help our students to find jobs in their chosen field,” said Kathryn Hyer, associate professor, School of Aging Studies, and director of the Florida Policy Exchange Center on Aging. “This is not only a great opportunity for our students to gain practical job interviewing experience, but it provides them with insight and knowledge into what professionals in their field value and look for when interviewing job candidates.”

Brian Robare, executive director of The Estates at Carpenters in Lakeland and board chair for LeadingAge Florida added, “Investing in the professional development of USF students interested in working with elders is important for long-term care providers because Florida has 2.7 million residents over age 65 and 543,000 over age 85.” 

The session is for “Health Care Operations of Long-Term Care” students and members of the USF Student Chapter of the American College of Health Care Administrators Club, which is also sponsoring the event. It runs from 6:15 to 8 p.m. in the MHC building room 1300.

Using USF’s Career Center forms, nursing home administrators will evaluate students’ interviewing skills and professional materials during a 15-minute mock interview. The list of nine administrators volunteering their time to this effort is made up of members of the School of Aging Studies’ Long-term Care Advisory Board. They hail from Bradenton, Daytona Beach, Lakeland, Largo, Pensacola, Seminole, Tampa and Winter Garden.

Students who have been serving as interns in nursing homes will participate in group interviews with the administrators, while other students observe.  “They’ll see how these interviews really work,” Hyer said.

USF’s bachelor’s degree program in long-term care administration started in 1984 and is the oldest in the state. More than 253 people have graduated from the program. At least 116 of them are currently licensed as administrators in Florida, which has 677 nursing homes.

For more information about the long-term care program, the School of Aging Studies or the mock interviews, please contact Kathryn Hyer at (813) 974-3232 or