Networking is about relationships. Plan to start building your network of professional contacts as early and as often as possible. Some experts say 80 percent of jobs are never even listed but instead are filled through networking. Mastering this skill is essential to increasing your chances of finding a job.
Ways to network while in school
- Connect with your existing contacts (family, friends, classmates, co-workers and mentors) and let them know you are exploring careers or looking for a job/internship.
- Speak to your professors and inquire about potential opportunities or resources.
- Use LinkedIn to reach out to alumni in fields of interest for advice, introductions, and assistance with jobs and internships at their organization.
- Request an informational interview with an alum or professional currently working in your field of interest to find out what they do and how they got there.
- Attend MCU career fairs and workshops, and any networking events with alumni and employers.
- Join a professional group or association to build a network in your field of interest. Most professional associations host regular networking events.
- Do an internship to get your foot in the door. The people you meet can connect you with other opportunities and serve as a reference source in the future.
- Volunteer. Involving yourself in volunteer roles allows others to get to know your work style and ethic.