Yesterday we hosted the first Hack.Diversity event: Mock Interview Day. In case you missed it, here’s the rundown on our newest program — and the pictures to relive the energy.

Mock Interview Day was designed to break the ice, help students build confidence and educate students and companies on best practices for inclusive interviewing. The event, without a doubt, accomplished all those and more.

Inaugural Hack.Diversity Student Cohort

The 20 students in the inaugural cohort and 30 representatives from our five inaugural host companies (Carbonite, DataXu, Hubspot, Vertex and Wayfair) showed up bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at 9am. They wrote their names and what they love most about Boston on a massive whiteboard wall before we dove in. The room was constantly buzzing as students and employers were sharing ideas, experiences, what they love about Boston, funny stories and workplace bloopers.

Jeff Bussgang, Frederick Townes and Melissa James kicked things off before workshops with Anna Tsui, Michael Goldstein and Melissa. Each workshop started with a brief presentation and immediately moved into an activity so that students and employers could implement the techniques and ideas they’d just learned.

In Anna’s presentation, she helped students understand how they can structure their stories to demonstrate the value they bring to a company. She had students practice their stories and then a few brave participants shared theirs with the entire group. Students and employers eagerly stepped forward. And that excitement was tangible throughout the day.

Michael asked participants to come up with three words to define themselves and then broke up the group for mini interviews in which they answered, “what’s one word that describes you?” The variety of descriptors was incredible and again, when asked to share their words and why with the group, people stepped up and enthusiastically grabbed the mic.

Finally in Melissa’s workshop, students learned to speak about projects they’ve worked on to demonstrate translatable skills. When she set the students and employers to task, some students were even pulling out their laptops to present their websites and apps to employers.

Before we wrapped up, we asked everyone to give us feedback and tell us how the day went. “Today was amazing. The workshops were immersive and definitely lowered my anxiety about interviews,” remarked on student. And on the employer side, we heard, “I was blown away by the caliber and composure of the students.”

To say we were blown away yesterday is an understatement. The students were amazing, we were humbled by the stories shared and energize by everyone’s passion. Mock Interview Day event was a tremendous success and further underscored Boston’s need for Hack.Diversity.

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