Building a relationship with one of your professors can be very intimidating at first. You have to warm up to them in hopes that they will be interested in getting to know you.
First impressions are everything so from day one you should make sure that your name is one that they won’t forget. As you continue throughout the semester you should make sure that you follow up with them and participate frequently. Trust me, being on your professors “good side” definitely has its perks!
Here are a few perks:
YOU CAN USE THEM AS A REFERENCE
When it comes to applying for jobs or internships, they typically ask for references to contact so that they can ask questions about your work ethic. It is common for college students to use professors as one of them if they have limited work experience (which is fine!). Before deciding on someone to be your reference, it would be in your best interest to choose someone who ACTUALLY likes you and thinks highly of you. You spend months at a time with different professors and most of the time they are able to catch on to your character almost right away. If you put in the effort, they will see how hard of a worker you are, which helps when they are asked to vouch for you.
NEED A GRADE BOOST?
When you build a good rapport with your professor and/or attend their office hours frequently, they notice that you care about how well you do in their class. So, at the end of the semester when you are at an 84.5 and you need that extra boost, they will be more open to helping you out.
WANT TO ACTUALLY ENJOY CLASS?
Having a personal relationship with your instructor makes class A LOT more enjoyable. All professors aren’t boring, monotone robots. Believe it or not, they are people with lives outside of the classroom! Having conversations with them about topics other than class can help you relate to them, which helps you gain a new-found respect for them.
If you need an internship, mention it to your professor and see if they are familiar with any. Need volunteer hours? Don’t be afraid to ask if they know of any nearby. Your instructors have access to a lot of information (even some that you might not be able to get your hands on). They have been in the working world for quite some time which means that they have a lot of connections in different fields of interest.
Just remember that building a friendly bond can only be beneficial for you in the end. Who knows, you might even discover a possible mentor.