How Can Your Alumni Network Help You Land Your Dream Job

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Higher education can be a beautiful thing. It is where many people truly discover who they are, what their passion is and what they want to do with the rest of their lives. It is also where many people go to, in fact, learn how to do the job they are looking for. However, learning how to do a job and getting that job are two very different things.


The world is filled with men and women who have studied a subject, only to find themselves unable to “break into their field” for any number of reasons. And it is at this point in their lives the hard skills of academia can let them down and need to be replaced by the soft skills of networking. Networking with your alumni is one of the best ways to get a job, so it’s a great place to start.


While there is always a chance that time and persistence will help you land that dream job, why not take matters into your hands and use these tips to work your alumni network and find the job you’ve been waiting for.


Start Early

Still in school? Start networking. Just graduated? Start networking. Have you been out of school for a couple of years? Yep, start networking. There is no wrong time to reach out to your network but realize that networking itself can often take time before anything substantial happens. Start early and enjoy the rewards of your efforts sooner.


Choose the Right People

Just because someone is in your alumni network doesn’t make them the right person to be reaching out to. Make sure that the people you contact can help you in your search. Do they work in the same field as the one you want to? Are they in a position to hire you or at least provide a referral? Finding the right people can save you a lot of time and provide you with a lot more opportunity.


Ask the Right Questions

And “Hey, can you get me a job,” is not one of those questions. Networking is an art, and human nature dictates nobody likes to feel taken advantage of. Take your time and ask the right questions with your network. Ask how they like their roles, what they did to get to that point in their career, and what advice they may have for you. By having a real conversation with your network, it will show them that you are serious about your field and not just looking for your next paycheck.

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