Find Work Through Your School Alumni Network
Be glad you’re a grad! The doors have swung open to a lifetime of work (and continuous learning). There are also some harsh employment realities to grasp. One’s that it isn’t just what you know, but who you know.
As luck would have it, your school’s a buzzing hive of people to network. Professors. Classmates. Volunteer groups. And one place that’s specially built for linking grads together: the Alumni Network.
At most schools, it’s more than a printed list of graduates. Explore the various layers they have to offer.
Alumni News Magazine
Check out who’s been featured this month. Someone you knew? Someone, it might be worth knowing? Stories about movers and shakers, award winners, and where people are working can inspire you to approach them.
The flipside’s making sure to submit compelling updates about yourself like getting married. Switching jobs and moving somewhere new or having a baby. Build your brand frequently.
Online List Of Alumni
Lately, school alumni directories have become like LinkedIn. Search by year of graduation, specialty, location, degree attained, and current place of work. The cool thing is you’ve all got at least one thing in common as an ice breaker: each of you is a graduate of your school. That alone can hook their attention.
Didn’t do enough strategic networking while on campus? Late nights at the pub don’t count. Now you feel a little skeezy lurking around your old haunts. Alumni groups understand. They often schedule live events around town. Meet and greets are common. Bringing in a guest speaker to lead discussions happens too.
Shared Interest Groups
Maybe you were on the school’s swim team. Or debating club. Possibly played tuba in the marching band. Those groups didn’t disappear, and in fact, might be happy to have you back as a coach or mentor.
Volunteer On The Alumni Committee
Here’s a way to keep track of graduates new and old. Assist on a committee within the Alumni association. There’s room for event planning and giving out awards; advocacy, and brand ambassadorship. Nothing like giving back to gain a bit of respect and exposure.
Share Your Expertise
Lifelong learning is part of an alumni association’s mandate. You needn’t be a professor to impart your wisdom to crowds. Share your learnings via podcasts, videos, or webinars. Have a public lecture arranged if the topic’s compelling enough.
Keep Leveraging Your Contact List
If all you did to build your networking list were getting involved with the alumni association, there’d be plenty of payoffs. Turn those contacts into professional door openers and advisors.
Ask for referrals to targeted employers. Get introduced to people they know you’d otherwise have no access to. And always, always, thank or reciprocate. Helpful alumni aren’t always easy to come by.