It’s only a matter of time before students complete their programs and start looking for jobs. Getting your foot in the door in your field of choice can be hard. But, having connections can help make it easier. That’s why the time to start networking is now.
Lydia Novak, a career counsellor at Sheridan, says students should start as soon as possible prior to graduating to begin building their network.
“Sometimes when you’re networking as you’re about to graduate, there can be a delay in these sorts of things. So, your network may not yield a job right away. So make it a holistic kind of thing,” said Novak.
Novak also said that Sheridan recently created Sheridan Connect. Students can use it as a tool to connect with former graduates. This can be beneficial for mentoring, requesting informational interviews or simply to help gain real-world knowledge.
But the career centre isn’t the only resource students can use to begin to network. Networking can start with your parents, friends or faculty. By reaching out to them, you can possibly connect to others and start building connections.
Online tools or going out and getting yourself involved are also great ways to begin. Here are some ways students can connect:
- Using social media.
- Getting a Linkedin profile.
- Reaching out to alumni or faculty.
- Attending career fairs.
- Going to Career Services.
Kha Nguyen is an engineering student at the University of Waterloo who recently got a job. He said, “We’re in a period of our lives where we are surrounded by people our age, where we can make friendships and business connections with. These people have the potential to give you connections that you need or know someone who can give you what you need.”
Anyone you meet could be a potential connection which is why students should start putting themselves out there and making their work known.
Recent data from the Canadian Internet Registration Authority showed that Canadians are already spending a significant part of their day online.
While you’re online browsing social media, you can create connections by using online tools. Novak said, “For students that tend to be a little shyer, there is the online way, like using social media or getting a LinkedIn profile, and having one created that is professional.”
Recent Sheridan graduate Emanuel George had this advice:
“I started telling people what I did, they asked if I could make a video of this, or make a video of that, some of my work and the work ethic I’ve had, people have seen what I’m doing. They wanted me to be apart of whatever they’re doing. So work hard and people will notice that.”
So get involved and put yourself out there, because the time to network is now.