By: Kara Davis, Peer Advisor

So you finally made a LinkedIn account, but you have no idea what to do with it.  One of the functions of LinkedIn is finding internships.  As a college student, internships are a great way to test out your desired career field and see if it really is the right fit for you.  When looking for future full-time jobs or applying to graduate school, that internship experience is almost necessary on your resume. Now that you’ve created a LinkedIn account, you’ve given yourself access to many more internship opportunities.

A basic search process on LinkedIn will show you internships in your desired field in whatever area you want. To utilize this social media site to your benefit, add as much about your professional self to your LinkedIn profile as possible. LinkedIn will use that information to tailor your searches to jobs that would better interest you. Another great tool on LinkedIn is being able to see how many alumni work at different companies you look at. Clicking this option shows you the number of alumni at the company and allows you to view their profiles. I think this is a great tool because it allows you the opportunity for further networking, but also gives you an accurate amount of how many people from your school have been successful in the field you are interested in.

Now that you’ve found a position you’re interested in, research and apply! Make sure all of the information on your profile is accurate and up to date because potential employers can, and usually do, view your LinkedIn profile.  Personalize your URL so that it’s easily accessible and include it at the top of your resume.  Before submitting your application, try reaching out to some of the alumni that you’ve found working at the company you are interested in.  Ask them what they love about the company, how they’d describe the company culture, etc. They will probably be able to provide you with more information than the short job description usually posted with the application. Reaching out to the alumni may also help you stand out more during the hiring process. Good luck!