Discover what resources your college offers and take advantage of the services or opportunities that work best for you. A few resources are listed below:
1. Visit your college career center
You pay for services like the career office and writing center through fees tacked onto your bill, so why not use them as much as possible? Career offices give feedback on resumes, CVs, and cover letters, conduct mock interviews, and provide advice on networking, including technology on LinkedIn. If you need help finding summer and semester internships or a full-time job after graduation, this is the place to go. Many colleges have a website dedicated to students looking for employment that includes internship and job postings. Career advisers focus on helping you put that hard-earned, and often expensive, degree to good use. Schedule an appointment or visit during the walk-in period. Before your appointment, check out the career office website, as these sites often include cover letter and resume templates that can help get you started. Then, when you go in for your review, you can get more out of your session. Career centers also compile job postings on their websites. Sign into your student account and get looking!
2. Get to know your professors
Go to office hours. Whether it is striking up intellectual conversations, talking about papers, or getting help on homework, interacting with your professor one-on-one has numerous benefits. For example, engaging with your professor could very likely result in a better grade from your increased effort in the class. A professor that acts as a mentor could suggest career paths that use similar skills or recommend you to an internship program. It may depend on the discipline (and the teacher), but some professors have work experience outside of academia. Even those that do not often have connections in similar fields that you could be interested in.
If you feel shy about meeting with your professor, keep in mind that your teachers are eager to see you succeed and they are there to help. Choosing a thesis director or finding a future reference will be much easier if you have been keeping up relationships as well.
3. Join the Student Alumni Association
One of the best ways to meet and network with alumni of your university is to join the Student Alumni Association and work closely with the Alumni Association. Through the Student Alumni Association you can volunteer or get involved with organizing events with other students and alumni. Student members can also attend the alumni meetings. Events organized by your alumni association could include back to school kick-offs in your hometown, invitations to watch sports games as an alumni group, tailgating, and meet-and-greets around your college town. It sounds like fun, but it is also a great opportunity to get out there and make connections.
Other opportunities to meet alumni exist through departments and colleges within the university, as many often have networking opportunities and alumni speakers specific to the field of study.