One of the major technology trends over the past few years has been the explosion of social networking. Facebook and Twitter are the most popular social networking sites, and students use them all the time to connect with friends. Both Facebook and Twitter are sites where people share information about themselves of a more personal nature. As these sites grew in popularity, it became apparent that a site of a more professional nature to share information was needed. Thus, Linked-In was created.
Linked-In is defined by many as Facebook for professionals. It has grown in popularity as more employers use it to attract and find talent for their organizations. In a recent survey of hiring managers, 90 percent reported they have used Linked-In to identify potential talent.
Recognizing this as a major employment resource, the Career Services Office has begun to recommend that students, especially junior and seniors, establish a Linked-In profile. Setting up of a profile is similar developing a resume. Students highlight their education, experience, and interests and post this to their Linked-In account. They also have the option of posting a professional photograph. After establishing a profile, students may elect to join a group of people with similar interests or backgrounds. The Career Centers at CSB/SJU have established a group for students on Linked-In called CSB/SJU Career Connections and we are encouraging students to join. Employers are using this site to reach out to students and discuss opportunities within their organizations. There is also an active site for CSB/SJU alums, the CSB/SJU Alumnae/i group that offers a great networking option for students. Many alumni and alumnae are using this site to post jobs and internships to current Bennies and Johnnies, as well as offer advice about their career.
Social networking can be another tool in your student's job searching "toolbox," and we encourage them to take advantage of it.