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5 Ways to Network Yourself in College

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

College is an incredibly transformative time, and its main goal is to prepare you for life in the real world. While formal education and academics are important parts of your college experience, there is also much to learn outside of the classroom; networking is one of them. Networking yourself can include forming connections in your field and creating a brand for yourself. Starting networking yourself in college can be extremely beneficial to you once you enter the post-grad working world. Doing the work now may seem like small steps toward your career goals, but every step of networking counts and will eventually get you to where you want to be. Below are five ways to network yourself in college.

1. Get Involved on Campus

Getting involved in your campus community can help you to stay engaged in school events, meet new people, develop leadership opportunities and give you unique experiences. All of these things will also help you with your resume for any post-grad plans. One way to easily get involved on campus is by joining a club; many majors have clubs that can be great for professional connections within your field. 

2. Create an Online Presence

As social media use increases, creating an online presence has become central in creating a brand for yourself, as well as making connections. Having an online presence means that future employers will be able to find and reach out to you more easily. LinkedIn is a great platform to create a career-focused brand for yourself and enables you to virtually connect with professionals in your field.  Facebook and Instagram are also useful platforms to establish your online presence. 

3. Maintain Communication with Professors

Keeping up with past professors while still in college is a great skill to start developing; especially with professors in your major. By staying in touch with professors after you’ve taken their class, you are showing them that you are really interested in learning more about their field which can lead you to participate in their research and other projects that they might seek out students for. Deeper connections with your professors can also be helpful for post-grad letters of recommendation.

4. Familiarize Yourself with your Advising Center

Every college campus will have some form of an advising or student center. The purpose of these offices is to provide students with the tools they need for success during and after college. Advising centers can be helpful for networking yourself because they will often have advisors who can help you with your resume and answer almost all of your career-centered questions. 

5. Don’t Be Afraid to Make the First Move 

Finally, never feel hesitant to make the first move when it comes to networking yourself. Reach out first, introduce yourself first, send the first email or message, ask a lot of questions and share your ideas. Practicing this in college will also help you when networking yourself in the working world. 

College can bring many opportunities, but you are only going to get out of it what you give in to it. It is never too early or too late to start networking yourself in college. Your future self will thank you. 

Gillian is a third-year at Cal Poly SLO. She is majoring in Psychology and minoring in Child Development. Gillian is an editor and writer for Cal Poly Her Campus this year. She enjoys writing about sustainable fashion, social media trends, and activism. Even though she is planning a career in psychology, she loves being a part of Her Campus because it allows her to have a creative outlet and continue her passion for writing.
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