Career Learning: Expanding Your Online Network

Nothing beats networking when it comes to landing the right job. Studies show that 80 percent of jobs are found through people the job seeker knows – or through people the job seeker’s family, friends, former classmates or colleagues know.

The Hegi Family Career Development Center offers students tools to build their networks online. While a face-to-face meeting is still the ultimate in networking, these online tools can provide powerful additional ways to make contacts and explore career resources:


Hegi Center on LinkedIn

More than 400 SMU students and alumni are members of the Career Center’s exclusive group on LinkedIn, the professional networking site for exchanging career information and building connections. Join our group now.

If you haven’t yet set up a LinkedIn profile, get started by entering your professional and academic information, career accomplishments and award- think of it as an online resume.

Employers use LinkedIn to search for potential employees and to post jobs. You’ll use LinkedIn to build your network by “connecting” with colleagues and classmates, thereby gaining access to your connections’ connections. You’ll be surprised how many people you didn’t know you knew!

Hegi Center on Twitter

Our newest tool features “tweets”, or short updates of 140 characters or less, about job postings, career development events and job fairs, and links to experts and helpful articles.

When you sign up to “follow” us, you’ll quickly discover that more and more companies (and their CEOs) are using this social networking tool to tweet job openings and corporate news. Observe their posts and responses, and if you have something insightful and professional to add, get your name out there with a tweet.

Hegi Center on iTunes

Our podcasts on iTunes U are a great way for our alumni who live around the world and students living abroad to hear our counselors’ “Quicktips” on career fairs, interviewing, resumes and more.

We’re also beginning to record our career workshops and panel events with industry representatives. And you’ll be hearing more interviews with alumni and students about their career and internship experiences. Stay tuned!

The Career Center is open this summer and ready to discuss networking and other career issues. Contact us by email at careers@smu.edu, by phone at 214-768-2266, by tweet or by appointment at Hughes-Trigg Student Center. Counselors also are open for questions and comments at their blog: smuhegi.blogspot.com.

(Column by Caryn Statman, assistant director of the Hegi Family Career Development Center.)

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