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It has been really fascinating to see how much I have grown over the past couple of years. One area of growth that has been very apparent has been my professional networking. I grew up a shy kid and never really talked to anyone unless they talked to me first. When I got to college, I reinvented myself in a way, and was able to break out of my shell. I made my LinkedIn account in high school and was super hesitant to connect with people I did not know well. I felt weird connecting with people professionally as I had not had much work experience that I believed was “worthy.” I soon began to realize that a lot of my peers were in the same boat and it became evident that LinkedIn was there to help you grow and not judge you on the limited work experience you may have. I started connecting with classmates, family, and teachers and grew my network. I followed both my high school and the UNH pages and have reached out to many alumni with questions and internship inquiries. Fast forward to now, and I have had opportunities I otherwise would not have had; some of my strong connections have even become mentors to me.

My main message is to not be afraid of LinkedIn and other professional networking sites. I did not think a website could be this helpful, yet it has landed me many interviews that I would not have had a shot at otherwise. With a site like this, comes the need to display professionalism throughout. It is not your everyday social media like Facebook and Instagram- you need to put your best foot forward. It is good seeing how others interact with the site and it demonstrates professionalism throughout. In the end, you may find it is not for you, but you’ll never know until you try. I urge you to, firstly, make a profile if you do not already have one, and then to put some effort in and maintain it. You get out of LinkedIn, what you put in.

Hey! My name is Taylor Sheehan and I am a Sophomore at the University of New Hampshire, and am majoring in Health Management and Policy!
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