networking

Start It Right, Start it Now: Building Your Network While Still in College

Being a college student may just mean studying hard, passing the exams, and having some fun and taking part in post-semester parties. However, this period in your life also gives a chance to meet new people who may help you achieve your career goals

While the prospect of being in the real world after college may scare you, you have to understand that the future is always closer than you think. So you need to prepare and arm yourself with connections and people who can support you and your goals. This is the reason you should start building your network. While you may be clueless about it, there are actually some pointers that may make things much easier for you. Here are some of them:

Pick the right internship

Your internship is basically your sneak peek on the real world. You get exposed to how organizational operations and the dynamics among employees actually work. With this in mind, it only makes sense that the internship you are applying for is actually in line with your own goals. For one, if it is your goal to become a well-rounded marketing professional, consider applying at an advertising agency or a brand’s marketing department. The people who will mentor you there may eventually help you navigate the future world you want to be part of.

Attend seminars and conferences

While you are still in the university, you will find yourself attending conferences, symposiums, and even seminars on psychology. Do not ditch these events, as you may find someone who can inspire you to set goals or someone who may introduce you to the right people. The keynote speakers and even other attendees have connections that can mentor you. There are some speakers who would even offer their calling cards, and that means they are willing to entertain questions and partnership opportunities.

Sign up for a LinkedIn account

social media accounts

In the age of social media, many young college students think that LinkedIn is too professional or mature for them. However, the counterintuitive move here is to slowly build your network and track it before you graduate. That way, you have already built connections with HR officers, possible employers, and even potential business partners. You will be surprised by how many people are willing to reach out to you.

Join clubs and organizations

Don’t let shyness and fear hold you back from meeting new people. Clubs and organizations are the best venues for building your initial network. Some clubs even conduct off-campus activities, which actually expand your exposure to people who can possibly help you achieve your goals. Some organizations even invite speakers and resource person that you can turn into new connections.

Just make the first move

An important step for building the network is making the first move. Connections should be proactively made, so it would be wise to step out of your bubble or your comfort zone. While you are at it, you may also consider accommodating people who want become a connection. Don’t close your doors, and be open to possibilities.