By some estimates, nearly 80% of opportunities are found through networking. Building a network of professional relationships is best started before you're seeking an opportunity, even from your first year, and will continue throughout Smith and as an alum.
While it's not appropriate to ask a networking contact for a job or internship, by connecting with people in your field of interest you can:
- Hear advice on getting started and advancing in a field
- Learn about career-specific resources and get the names of others to talk to
- Find out about opportunities before they're posted
Informational interviews - one-on-one conversations with people whose careers interest you - are a great tool to start building both your career knowledge and your network.
It works! You'll discover most people like talking about themselves and their career paths and offering advice to those starting out.
Alumnae Association of Smith College - The online directory lists alums by career, employer, and location which students may access using their 99#. Includes a world-wide directory of Smith Clubs.
LinkedIn - The world's largest professional networking site. Join the Smith College LinkedIn group and groups for your field of interest.
Informational Interviewing and the Art of Networking (PDF) - Our guide covering how to prepare for and set up a networking meeting, questions to ask, and follow-up actions.
Lazarus Center Workshops on networking and LinkedIn are offered throughout the semester and J-term.
Need more? Meet with a Lazarus Center career advisor by calling 413-585-2582.