Networking is a frequently used, often misunderstood, part of the job search process. It refers to a give and take process of connecting with people and building lasting relationships. It’s about meeting new people, sharing information, and learning about potential opportunities and various career fields.
Networking. Even reading the word can cause some students to recoil. But, when done right, networking is nothing more than good conversation. There are five steps you can take to make networking not only effective, but informative and even fun.
Connecting with UNC alumni can be one of the best approaches to networking. Members of the Tar Heel family have a lot of loyalty to UNC and are often happy to help students with networking and informational interviewing.
UCS offers 6-8 different Networking Nights or Meet Ups each year. These programs give students an opportunity to meet and mingle with working professionals. Each event has a theme, usually based on a specific industry or field such as "communications careers," "green/sustainable careers," "non-profit careers" or "careers for social good." Check the UCS Events schedule on Handshake for the current slate of offerings - these are open to both undergraduate and graduate students. A helpful tip sheet is below for your use.
The use of social media in career-related activities has increased dramatically in recent years. These relatively-new outlets can benefit you in several areas, including keeping you informed of trends and news, serving as a place to source jobs and internships, and allowing you to expand your network.
Nearly every student uses social networks like Facebook. But, many of those same students don't realize that a social network exists to do professional networking. The site is called LinkedIn.com, and it provides the opportunity to stay in touch with your professional connections.