At Texas A&M University, and we call our alumni Former Students. Once an Aggie; always an Aggie. The impact of our Former Student Association has with its fellow members in the job search is something I cannot begin to put into words. Let’s face it, Aggies want to hire Aggies. I’ll bet many of your alumni associations are similar.
Whether you are about to graduate and looking to begin your career or have already graduated and back in the job market, have you must list your alumni association as a source for networking prospects?
People who have graduated from your school are familiar with your education. They have a good feel for the values you have learned while in college. You might also find alumni from your school very interested in mentoring you through your job search.
Your school’s alumni association or, in my case, the Association of Former Students is an organization of great networking contacts, hiring managers and people who need to hire talent. If your school does not have a directory of your former students, two online resources I would highly recommend you use include LinkedIn and CareerShift. Both offer advanced search capabilities to find exactly the right people who fit specific profiles.
The first step in networking is to start with people you know. Your university’s alumni association is one of the strongest resources you have at your disposal. Wayne Gretsky said it best, “You lose 100% of the shots you never take.”