The 3 Best Ways to Network in College

by Sara Vazquez Shaw

Networking can be integral in landing the right post-college job or internship. People who know the 'right' people can more easily get their foot in the door and land positions they desire. People who network can find new leads in the job market or even find connections to smooth the transition to grad school.

Simply put, those who network are seen as more successful and confident. They have the advantage of knowing lots of people and are resourceful in utilising those relationships to get ahead. They are able to land the right job, school, or position in life. There are a few great ways you can do some fruitful networking of your own while in school.

Stay socially active

Attending business functions where you can meet and mingle with other professionals in your area of study is a great way to stay in the loop. By doing this you can meet others who work in your prospective field and connect. Even if your relationship with these people may seem insignificant now, you never know when you can call upon these people in the future.

Also don't forget to hang out with your peers; besides making friends, these acquaintance relationships may create a lasting impression for years to come. When you have friendly rapport with your peers, they tend to be more likely to help you out with favours or connect you with the right person. People like to help people, especially ones they like!

Online social networking

The beauty of the Internet is that you can easily stay connected to people at all times. Social media and job networking sites make it easy to stay in touch with old classmates, teachers, and other professional contacts. It also enables you to reach out to people you don't know and would like to connect with. You have a whole collection of professional resources at your fingertips!

It's excellent that these websites have done all the work for us in organising our contacts. This makes it easy to quickly look someone up and send a quick note or ask him or her to write you a letter of reference. It's also good for contacting other professionals to ask them about potential career moves and fields.

Get creative

Brainstorm ways to network; meeting the right people doesn't always have to be conventional. Throw a fun event and market to local professionals, or people you'd like to connect with. Maybe you could volunteer in the area where you'd like to be successful in your life. Throw a fundraiser, connect with old contacts, or pick a favourite coffee shop and go mingle. You never know what or who could be waiting for you right around the corner!