Getting More Out of LinkedIn for College Students

2012-01-17

Recently I’ve been asked by a lot of my friends at school what value can they get from LinkedIn beyond just searching for jobs and connecting with classmates. While LinkedIn has a lot of great features, I think three are particularly helpful for the average college student.

LinkedIn Today

LinkedIn Today was released last year and currently sits at the top of everyone’s news feed. The product is basically a customizable smart newspaper for each user and allows them to pick industries that they want to be in the know how for. Since the top stories are calculated based by shares and reading behaviors of professionals in that industry, a student can easily see what news important for his or her prospective industry. This can be particularly helpful for making sure that he or she is informed before going into an interview.

http://www.linkedin.com/today

Groups

A lot of students end up joining university or student activity based groups, such as fraternity or sorority. While these groups do have job postings, I think a lot of the value of groups comes from interest based groups. There tends to be rich discussion there about the topic and provides an opportunity for you get more informed but also connect with professionals that you may not have connected with before.

http://www.linkedin.com/groupsDirectory

Career Explorer

I noticed this tool under the Jobs menu once but it seems to have disappeared now. The tool says that it is in Beta so it might not be available to everyone but it allows students to plan out their careers one level at a time and see average salaries at each level. This is helpful for planning long term and deciding between different fields.

http://www.linkedin.com/careerexplorer/dashboard

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