LinkedIn – Is it really the place for me?

April 19, 2017

LinkedIn – Is it really the place for me?

The last couple of blogs have been about your professional image – online and otherwise.  LinkedIn is the professional networking space of today’s day and age.  We used to talk about networking as mostly a face to face experience.  But, I think we all know those days are over.  So, what should a college student do about their LinkedIn presence?  You aren’t necessarily in the workforce full time, but you do need to establish a presence on this social media site. 

Recruiters, hiring managers, graduate admission committees will all be able to find you on LinkedIn.  In fact, according to LinkedIn, 9 out of 10 recruiters use LinkedIn to find candidates and 75% of hiring mangers look at LinkedIn profiles before deciding on a hire. First impressions made by looking at your LinkedIn profile are important and will be based on the image you present.  LinkedIn recommends these tips for building the perfect LinkedIn profile.

First of all, you need to make sure you have a professional looking photo.  Many career centers offer the opportunity of taking your professional photo in their office or at one of the job fairs they host.  If you don’t have that option, you can have your friend take your photo but make sure it is against neutral background and that you are dressed professionally.  In addition, you can review these LinkedIn Photo tips to help enhance and crop your photo.  Secondly, you can manage your LinkedIn feed to make it worth your time and effort.  Personalize your feed and makes it valuable to you and those you are interacting with online.  It’s important to always keep in mind that you are building your professional network in this space. Think carefully about the topics you might post and as always make sure to proofread and use correct grammar.

LinkedIn is a powerful tool facilitating connections between people we have never met by leveraging the relationships of the people we know.  One example is our Student Experience LinkedIn page.  This is a starting point for you.  Student Experience has employed thousands of college students in our history as an employer.  When you indicate your work history and connect to others who’ve worked at Student Experience, they can make assumptions about your character, work ethic, and ability to persevere.  People who have been a PCA know what it means and what has been expected of you.  You could reach out to anyone connected to Student Experience and ask to network based on that commonality.  We’ve had students go on to work in almost any field, industry or setting.  Use the Student Experience brand to connect on LinkedIn

I challenge each of you to create your LinkedIn Profile (it is one of your options in the Competitive Edge Program) and start to use it to connect to others in your field of interest.  When I graduated from college, networking couldn’t be done from my couch or riding the bus.  Today, you can connect with others at almost any time and reach beyond your actual physical location to opportunities on the other side of the world.  LinkedIn can help you achieve your dreams – if you use it thoughtfully!


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About Gregg Saunders

Gregg Saunders is passionate about helping others grow and reach their future success.  He has been President of Student Experience since 1993.  He has brought a unique combination of student development and business together, effectively challenging and supporting students to accomplish more than they thought they could.

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