Networking on LinkedIn

Hi! My name is Jaden and I’m a third-year student here at UMass Lowell. I’m majoring in English with a concentration in Journalism and Professional Writing.

Currently, I’m an intern for the University’s Career & Co-op Center. The center has tons of great career, internship, and co-op resources for students so I will be blogging about my own experiences using those resources!

Recently, for my internship class, I had to create a LinkedIn profile for networking, and I had no idea how to make connections. There are so many employers, professionals, and students! For my second post, I thought I would share what it’s like networking on LinkedIn for the first time since I know it can seem quite intimidating.

First, I logged into my LinkedIn account to find alumni from UMass Lowell. I’ve found it can be easier to make connections if the person and I have something in common like an alma mater. I went to the UMass Lowell LinkedIn page and I searched for technical writers from the Greater Boston area in the alumni search bar. The process was very easy. I kept my filters to a minimum because I wanted to find as many alumni as possible!

My search worked and I found lots of technical writers! Yay! They all worked in a variety of industries like medical, robotics, software, finance, and automotive. I sent them a request to connect, there is a request button on LinkedIn, and I also wrote a short introductory note about myself. I introduced myself, said I was a current English major at UMass Lowell who was interested in technical writing, and then I specified what aspects of their experience inspired me to connect with them. Being specific and personal seemed important because it not only feels more genuine, it also creates a goal for each interaction. Adding a note when sending a connection request is also important because potential connections do not know who I am, they would just think I’m a random stranger.

Overall, this process was a bit nerve-wracking. It was new and I felt like I did not know what to do in the beginning, but I’m glad I did it. Two of the alumni accepted my requests, which is less than I hoped for, but networking is a process and it’s getting a lot easier for me now. I’ll keep networking and building connections!