How to network as a college student and why it's so important.
Why is networking important?
Building your professional network while in college is crucial to your career success. The connections you establish while in college with professors, fellow students, thought leaders, and working professionals will help shape the opportunities available to you during school and after you graduate.
Are you looking for career guidance? mentorship? internship opportunities? industry insight? The best way to find all of these is through your personal and professional networks.
Estimates show that upwards of 80% of jobs are filled through networking or employee referrals.
How do I start networking?
Start with your fellow class mates and professors
You're in class every day so you might as well take advantage of the opportunity. Our SCMN faculty have years of supply chain industry experience (and connections!) so be engaged during class and start building those relationship.
Maybe that student sitting next to you interned with your dream company last summer. You'll never know if you sit silently in class every day and don't get to know your follow students.
Get involved on campus
Go to networking events
Attend career fairs, employer lunch & learns, info session, and other events put on by the SCMN department and the Office of Professional and Career Development. Visit Handshake to see and RSVP for upcoming events on campus. Also make sure you're reading the Supply Chain Connection Newsletter for up-to-date info on upcoming events.
Don't be afraid to make the first move
Send that LinkedIn message, ask thoughtful questions, approach new people, speak up during class. Starting the conversation is the biggest hurdle but there is very little downside to jumping right in.
Maintain your network
Follow through with new connections by either emailing or connecting on LinkedIn. Keep in touch with your connections by updating them on big changes or achievements.