Column: Why LinkedIn is important for college students


Micah Sanders, Managing Editor for Editorial Operations

Social media is an important platform that allows people to create, share and connect with friends and family. While Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat are the superior social media applications for students in college, LinkedIn is starting to become more and more popular amongst college students who are trying to obtain a job once they graduate. 

Similar to the social media apps mentioned above, LinkedIn combines all of the aspects, layouts, and aesthetics of Instagram while catering to specific jobs, internships, and networking with people who have similar interests and passions. With over 600 million professional profiles, there is plenty of opportunity for success in whichever avenue you decide to take. 

Since being in college, LinkedIn has become my favorite social media platform, I have even downloaded the app on my phone. Not only can you make your internship and job applications stand out with a LinkedIn profile, but you can also build your brand and make life-long connections with other students. With search engine optimization, you can find jobs anywhere in the United States while setting up job alerts and email updates to your email so that you will not miss a beat. 

On top of that, if you have a premium account, you can access more information about job openings, sending direct messages to recruiters, and even privately viewing other job applicants’ profiles to compare and contrast the competition. I especially used those premium perks once I received the three-month free trial that is offered once your account is created. Even though the lowest premium account subscription is $29.99 monthly, it may be a great investment to bestow upon yourself. 

Update your profile! Once you create your account, you want to make sure that your profile matches not only your resume but also your personality. Add some accomplishments, skills, and honors to your profile to make it stand out from the rest. After you add your accomplishments, write a powerful summary that emphasizes your strengths and qualities. If possible, get some people to endorse your profile with quotes about your work ethic and dedication. By doing these simple but valuable things, your profile goes from bland to bright! Also, keep your profile picture a professional headshot. It is unprofessional to have a selfie on your profile; it shows the lack of professionalism and interest which are two of the main criteria most jobs look for in an employee. Try to create a personal and unique background header that displays your talents and interests. Use bold colors so that it automatically stands out once anyone visits your page. With all of these simple steps, the first part of your profile is complete. 

Now, since your profile is updated to your current organizations, jobs, and experiences in college, it is time to work on the next important step — connections! This step is important because you can have a nice profile but have zero connections, which limits your surroundings regarding networking and hearing about new job opportunities. 

So, to fix that, try to connect on LinkedIn with your friends, people at school, and maybe even professors! By doing this, it makes your profile stand out even more because it shows the recruiter that you are amiable and can communicate well with others. As the famous quote says, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.”  There are over 200 connections on LinkedIn which exposed me to greater opportunities and avenues. Of course, getting to such a high number of connections is not easy, but it can be done if you go out of your way and connect with people in your major or field. 

If you want to graduate from Alabama State University and smoothly transition to a career, then you certainly should download and create a LinkedIn account. It is free so why wait! Since everything is starting to become paperless and more electronic, LinkedIn is the perfect place to start. 

With the many benefits and perks that I just listed, there should be no need to convince you anymore. Download it now, what are you waiting for? Build your network, search for internships, connect with professionals in your field and show everyone why ASU is the place to be! Make sure to update your profile as much as you do on our other social media and you shall reap the benefits.