The Top 5 Places To Network As A College Student
It is extremely important to make connections while you are in college and especially after you graduate. This is the time when you meet life long friends, coworkers, and significant others. For both resident and commuter students networking might be much different. Interactions are extremely important whether it's in the job field or not and some students might not have the same opportunities depending on their residence, experience or obligations.
So where can you network if you're still in college?
LinkedIn helps people make connections in almost any job field from communications and science to blogging and child care. Your LinkedIn profile explains who you are, what you want and why you want it. It gives employers a better feel for you as a person through your experiences, qualifications, and interests. On LinkedIn, you can connect with people you know and also with people that you have yet to meet based off of your common interests. LinkedIn is a great networking site that helps you establish connections with others! Make sure that you're adding people that you've either met or had a conversation with. They will be more likely to add you which will make you a new connection for them and those that they are connected with.
Social gatherings are a great place to network whether it's at a family party, school function or at a local restaurant. Connecting with people you already know can be beneficial too but becoming more extroverted and meeting new people is even more beneficial. Often times people you have known for a very long time can help you out with important aspects of your life such as picking a school or finding a job. These people already know who you are, what you want in life and what interests you. On the other hand, new connections can introduce you to new ideas and careers that you might not have otherwise considered.
Your friends can be a great resource and can even get you your dream job! Making friends while in college is easy as long as you engage with others and become involved or well known on campus. Your friends know who you are, what makes you happy or frustrated and what you're good at. It might not always be the best idea to refer your friends to your own workplace, so make sure that you understand their ability and their experience in that specific field before speaking with human resources.
Traveling can be one of the most exciting and refreshing ways to make new connections. If you're going abroad try to connect with the locals just in case you decide to move to that location one day. If you're flying local do your homework, project or assignments on the plane or work on your resume. You never know if the person sitting next to you might work in your preferred career, or if they have their own personal connections.
Your College or University
Your college or Universtiy probably offers so many exciting opportunities to network! Events like the involvement fair, career and graduate fair and social events are an easy place to market yourself and make connections. Becoming familiar with your professors and keeping in touch with them is also a great way to keep connected to opportunities in the professional world. Take the initiative and show up to class wearing business casual apparel, especially in business courses. You will stand out more to your professor which will make them more likely to notice you and ask for you to participate in things that other students will miss out on. Your appearance is very important especially in college because it sets you apart from everyone else. Wearing sweat pants to campus might be comfortable but it doesn't exactly make the best impression.
Networking doesn't have to be stressful and it's much easier than you think!