Career Development

3 Essential Networking Tips for College Students

By Sarah Greenberg

Posted @ Apr 06, 2023

Are you a university learner hoping to extend your connections and encounter fresh individuals? 

Networking is an invaluable skill that can help you build meaningful relationships and advance your career. 

In this blog, we will provide you with advice that can help you start networking effectively. We will cover various ways to meet people, including using social media platforms such as LinkedIn and attending events related to your interests or industry.

If you’re ready to take the first step towards building a strong network, keep reading for our expert advice on effective networking strategies for college students!

Overview of Networking for College Students

The first step to successful networking is having a plan. Do some investigation prior to going to any gathering. Become acquainted with the organizations that will be present so you can decide who to address and what inquiries should be posed.


It’s also important to have a good elevator pitch prepared so that when someone asks what kind of work you are interested in doing or why they should hire you, you can answer confidently and succinctly.

Making Connections

Once at the event, don’t forget about the power of small talk. Having casual conversations with people around can help break the ice before talking about more serious topics like jobs or internships. Recruiters can get a better feel of the individual behind the resume, instead of simply viewing another one among many submissions. 

Asking thoughtful questions shows genuine interest in learning more about their company which could lead to further conversations outside the event itself such as over email or even coffee meetings.

Leveraging Social Media

Social media has become one of the most powerful tools for connecting with professionals online as well as getting information on upcoming events where employers might be present looking for potential hires. 

Following industry leaders on Twitter or Instagram allows access into their world which may provide insight into trends within certain fields along with helpful advice from experienced professionals all while building relationships virtually through likes/comments/messages etc… 

Use social media wisely by making sure your profile reflects your best self professionally (avoid posting anything controversial) since this is essentially how recruiters may perceive who they’re potentially hiring down the line too.


Finally, remember not everyone leaves an event feeling satisfied. But take comfort knowing that every conversation you had was still valuable experience gained towards becoming better at networking overall. 

Don’t let fear keep you away from taking advantage of these amazing opportunities available. If nothing else, it’s always fun meeting new people so don’t dread going out there. Instead, embrace it and go out there ready to learn something new each time.

#1 Strong Preparation is Key

Doing research prior to the event is key for success, such as discovering who will be present, what companies they work for, and any topics that could possibly come up. Knowing this information can help you tailor your elevator pitch and ensure that you’re prepared to make meaningful connections.

Practice introducing yourself in 30 seconds or less with an elevator pitch. Your elevator pitch should outline your educational background, experience in the field, and how you could potentially benefit any company present. Think about ways that your skills could benefit the company represented at the event so that when asked about them during conversations, you’ll be able to give concrete examples.

Be sure to dress appropriately according to the event standards. Consider bringing copies of your resume just in case anyone requests one. All these steps are important not only for getting noticed but also helping create lasting impressions which will lead to more opportunities down the line–internships, jobs, and mentorship relationships.

#2 Making Strong Connections

Networking events often bring together people from different backgrounds, industries, and experiences. Don’t limit yourself by only talking to those who have similar interests or backgrounds as yours. Be open-minded when engaging in conversations at these events—you never know where it could lead.

Show genuine interest in the other person by asking them questions about their company or position rather than just focusing on yourself. This shows that you care about what they have to say and helps build rapport between both parties involved in the conversation.

After getting acquainted with someone at a networking event, take time afterwards to connect further through social media platforms like LinkedIn or Twitter if possible – this way they’ll remember who you are after leaving the event. 

You can also exchange contact information if appropriate (such as email addresses) which will help keep lines of communication open even after parting ways physically at the end of the night.

Establishing links at the occasion is a key element of connecting and can assist you in forming ties that will extend past only one evening. Following up after the event allows you to solidify those connections and further develop them into lasting professional relationships.

#3 The Importance of Following Up

Following up after a networking event is an important step to ensure that the connections you made are maintained. To ensure that the connections you made at a networking event are not lost, take advantage of their newfound relationships by promptly following up. 

Send Thank You Emails

After meeting someone at a networking event, it’s important to send them a thank you email expressing your appreciation for taking the time out of their day and sharing their insights with you. 

This will help show that you value your connection and want to continue building upon it. Make sure your email is personalized and include any notes from conversations had during the event so they know what topics were discussed.

Connect on Social Media Platforms

Connecting with someone on social media platforms like LinkedIn or Twitter can be another great way of staying connected after a networking event. Doing this allows you both to stay updated on each other’s professional endeavors as well as share content related to industry news or events they might find interesting.

Set Up Coffee Chats

Depending on where one lives, setting up coffee chats could also be beneficial in continuing conversations started at events if people live close enough geographically speaking. Having face-to-face meetings gives people more opportunity for further dialogue about career aspirations and interests which could lead into future collaborations down the line.


Networking events are an invaluable opportunity for college students to make connections and find internships, jobs, or other opportunities. With the right preparation and follow-up actions after the event, these networking tips can help you maximize your chances of success. 

Take the initiative to build your network and become more comfortable with in-person networking events. Leverage our tips to make meaningful connections that will last a lifetime!

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