Networking is connecting with people and finding individuals who work in the field in which you would like to work, or for an employer that is of interest to you. It is one of the most effective means of finding a job. Many alumni and other professionals are happy to help others in their field.
- networking results in approximately 65% of new job offers
- networking is about making connections - NOT about putting an individual on the spot for a job
- A career counselor can help you learn the right ways to network effectively including doing a mock interview practice session
Common networking resources include:
- Friends and Family – tell everyone you know about the kind of job you’re seeking, and ask for them to keep you in mind if they know of professional connections or job leads.
- Faculty - talk with your teachers to learn who the employers are in your field and make connections.
- LinkedIn - This is an extremely important career networking tool used by over 90% of employers. Connect with St. Kate's alumni through its alumni networking features. See tutorials and build your profile today.
- Work Contacts and Colleagues
- The Career Development Office provides coaching and written information about informational interviewing and researching potential employers. We can help connect you to alumni in your field.
Professional Associations –Find associations by: doing a web search; by asking faculty in you department about good professional associations and join LinkedIn professional groups. The St. Kate's library has a large directory of national professional associations.
- Join a professional association while in college and you can often become a member at a reduced rate.
- Attend some of the events sponsored by the organization and if you can, volunteer to help with a program or event. By doing this, you can meet professionals in the field, network for opportunities, and develop new resume highlights!
Tips to Networking with Alumni and Others in Your Field
Many alumni and professionals are happy to help students learn about their mutual career field or to connect with employers. Always use the following guidelines when connecting with a a professional in your field:
- Introduce yourself and explain that you are a Katie.
- Ask them if they would be willing to talk with you briefly about their career field or company. Tell them you are looking for 15-30 minutes of their time by phone or in person.
- If they agree, exchange contact information and agree on a meeting time.
- Have some questions ready to ask them when you talk. Sample Informational Interview Questions
- Be respectful of the agreed time commitment.
- Send a thank you note.