LinkedIn is mostly for the networking

Dear Editor,

It’s always great to see the Medium publishing articles on career-related topics to assist students in navigating their career goals—the last one being on LinkedIn, specifically their University pages.

Ms. Farah Khan outlined the feature and identified some flaws which may make it difficult for employers/recruiters to find students and vice versa. As an employment advisor who assists students on a very regular basis with LinkedIn, I know that while the initial aspects of LinkedIn can be beneficial (create a profile, look for job postings), its far greater potential lies in its research and networking tools that are not as obvious.

One of the biggest questions I get is “What can I do with my degree in…?” Well, the University pages allows students to browse through alumni profiles based on what they studied, where they work, and what they are skilled at. It allows you to explore different career paths, companies, and jobs by learning about what the people who graduated from the university are doing. You might be surprised at the diverse professional paths they’ve taken and what’s possible for you.

Networking is key in one’s job search; 70 to 80% of jobs out there are never even advertised—you find them via your network. While networking, you strategically build meaningful relationships with people and exchange information and ideas with them. One challenge most students have however, is to create that network—it can certainly be intimidating! LinkedIn, including the University pages, can help you identify contacts currently working in jobs and companies you may be interested in. They may be able to share information and insights that will help you in your job search. When reaching out to the people you find, you can leverage the fact that you are a student from the same university they attended. Often people are very willing to help others, especially since they were probably in your shoes at some point; you just need to make it easy for them. Once you create that connection, ask questions, listen, and learn from others  And thank them for their time; it’s a positive way to network.

The University page is just one tool you can use, no matter what stage you are at in your journey. LinkedIn has other research features that may not be as obvious; the Career Centre holds LinkedIn workshops and individual profile critiques to help you get the most out of this system.  Visit our website, call, or come to DV 3094 and see how we can help you!


Natasha Walli

Employment advisor, Career Centre

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