Getting Started with LinkedIn: Tips for College Students

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Erick Jenkins
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Most students agree that LinkedIn is not as fun as other social media apps and outlets. As a college student that loves LinkedIn, I want to share with you why I think it’s so great! Whether you use it to connect with peers and colleagues, or to network for a future job – LinkedIn is an important social media tool that you need to start using today! I will help you get your LinkedIn started and cover a few tips!

“LinkedIn is hard to create and develop” – FALSE!

It’s not any more difficult than your Facebook page! While creating your LinkedIn profile is time-consuming at first, it is very easy to maintain. A well-tended profile is a clearer representation of your work history than a resume. A resume is a one page document of relevant experience for job or scholarship applications. Think of your LinkedIn profile as an ongoing story of your work history. It’s much easier for you to update and maintain than a resume.

Look through the eyes of an employer

LinkedIn is the future of employment. Resumes will be phased out all together since an employer can easily go online and glance through all your work history. When creating a LinkedIn, you want to think of it as if you are an employer.  What would you like to see from an applicant? Post things that are professional, but that show your personality.

Profile pictures are important

This picture should reflect the job that you want. For example, a person desiring a career in art may not be dressed in as formal attire as a person looking for an internship with a bank. Your background picture should be appropriate as well. I feature a famous quote on my background. Tailor yours to show how you would like to be perceived by an employer. All pictures should portray confidence in who you are and should be representative of work that you can do.

Your personal statement

This should represent who you are as a person –  professionally. Obviously, you want to be appropriate and be honest. If you have a compelling story, add in some teasers so that employers can reference this in an interview.

Include all types of experience

LinkedIn gives you an opportunity to express everything in relation to your work history. With work history or “experience” you can put anything from being a board member of an organization on campus to any job and internship that you have had. Be sure to add any volunteer experience. Employers value candidates who give back to their communities. If you have projects or published content (such as a blog for Pearson Students!), you can add links to your content in this section.

Feature skills to complete your profile

This section should be vague and relevant to potential career skills needed. Public speaking, leadership, computer design, java, and event planning are all examples depending on your job focus and what your strengths are. Your followers will endorse you for skills and possibly add skills they think are relevant to you.

LinkedIn is nothing to fret about! It’s not any more difficult than creating a Facebook account and it will actually help you get employed! Create your LinkedIn today, and comment below with any ideas or questions you may have! If you want to connect with me, here’s my Link.

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