Learning to love LinkedIn


Learning to love LinkedIn

If you are a living, breathing being anywhere near a college campus, chances are you’ve been told to make a LinkedIn profile at some point. It can seem like a drag, and it can definitely feel intimidating. How do you make a social media account specifically for potential employers to see while still conveying some marginal amount of your personality? Don’t worry—just include these crucial pieces, and VIPs will surely take notice.

Back to basics

It seems like it should go without saying, but just in case you weren’t sure: yes, you need to include a profile picture. Nothing sends people flying away from your page quite like a vague silhouette in a gray bubble. It should be a professional headshot, but don’t overthink it. It’s as easy as throwing on an interview-worthy outfit and forcing your roommate to snap a few pics of you against a basic background. BOOM: instant increase in hire-ability.

Get some hot recs

If you had a professor who really loved your work, don’t hesitate to reach out to them and ask them for a short LinkedIn recommendation. Just one or two of these make a serious impression; it shows that people who’ve worked with you were impressed by your abilities. That’s a big bonus for recruiters scoping out your page.

On the flip side, you can use LinkedIn as a tool for getting some career recommendations. If you find someone in a field that interests you, send them a message! Lots of professionals are more than happy to offer advice to students and recent grads, and remember: the worst that can happen is they don’t respond. Totally worth the risk.
Make it work

Getting past the job-app jitters

Real talk: life after college is confusing and kinda scary. You’ve been in this routine for a decade and a half, and suddenly everything’s changing all at once and you’re spending every waking hour revising your cover letter until your eyes start twitching. Unfortunately, most degree programs don’t offer courses on what to do post-grad, so it’s up to you to figure it out for yourself. Here’s a couple tips that can help make it less scary and more exciting. After all, the world is your oyster now.

Get out there

The hardest part is getting off the ground. Once you hit your stride, landing a job feels a lot more feasible, but how do you even start? One easy way: make a future board. Get a big ol’ poster board (or just, like, a regular piece of paper if you’re not feeling that ambitious) and map out all your goals. Now is not the time to be ~practical~, so if you’ve got big dreams, write them down! Then map it all in reverse to figure out what a logical first step would be. You probably won’t get your dream job right out of college, but you can get a job that helps you get closer to your dream job, and that’s the next best thing.

Past that, it’s a matter of networking (I know, I’m sorry) and hurdling over your fear of making phone calls. Get over those jitters and call the company you’re interested in. An informational interview is a great way to find out more about your own interests while also showing the company that you’re great at taking initiative. And once you get that interview? You know what to do. Get in there and shine, kid. You’ll nail it.

In the News This Week:

Peaceful beginnings: For the first time in the Kyrgyzstan’s history, an elected president will peacefully hand over power after elections.

Smartphone takeover: Nikon, one of the most popular camera manufacturers, announced that it will shutter one of its major factories. The company cited the popularity of smartphones as a reason for its decision.

Turning up the competition: A second woman entered the Russian presidential race, campaigning for single mothers.

From the Blog

How to Land Your First Internship
Getting into college is a pretty nerve-wracking process, but the requirements are relatively regimented, and most people have a clear sense of what schools they can get into simply based on concrete metrics like the SAT, GPA, and, even, their extracurricular participation. But what about the next step – landing a job? Just like getting into college, there are a number of things you can do as a college graduate that increase the likelihood of your chances at landing a dream job right out of university. Part of the reason why internships are so important to the job application process lies with the fact that they demonstrate your real-world experience and ability to practically leverage your skills.

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