5 Reasons to Make a LinkedIn Account as a Student
In one of my classes this year, Technology and Society 310: Digital Skills for Your Career, one of our big assignments was to create a LinkedIn Profile.
Before this, LinkedIn had never really been on my radar. I thought it was for adults, CEOs, and an app that was starting to go out of style.
However, after spending many hours adding to my profile and finding people to connect with, I’ve realized just how useful it is even as a student. Here’s why:
1. A LinkedIn Profile is a Virtual Resume
Yes, you read that right. I look at my LinkedIn profile as a virtual resume.
Not only can you paste a link to your LinkedIn profile on your real resume when applying for jobs, but an active LinkedIn profile is also a great reference when tailoring your resume to different job postings.
2. Skills Endorsements
On your LinkedIn profile you can add a list of your top skills and competencies, much like you would on a resume.
When you connect with people—past employers or professors perhaps—they can endorse these skills to confirm that you actually are good at them.
This is basically a mini-equivalent of references. Anyone, even a potential employer, can view these endorsements if you choose to set up your profile as such.
3. Job Postings Tailored to You (Premium)
When I first made my account I decided to sign up for the 30-day free trial of LinkedIn Premium.
The best feature of Premium in my opinion, was that LinkedIn would notify me when a job post that fit my qualifications and interests was added where I live.
On top of how valuable that is already, it would tell me how many people had already applied for the position, and how qualified I was for the position compared to those previous applicants on a percentage basis. As a student, this would be extremely useful to find out which jobs are worth applying to.
4. Create Intellectual Property
As I said earlier, a LinkedIn profile is a version of a virtual resume, and you should want a potential employer to be intrigued when they look at it.
One way to go above and beyond in impressing these important profile-viewers would be to create intellectual property on your profile, such as blog posts about different issues or hot topics in the industry you’re trying to get into.
While writing articles and posts like these may not be acceptable on a resume or cover letter, these are celebrated on your LinkedIn profile.
5. Connect with Classmates
Your classmates now are potential networking opportunities for careers in the future. So connecting with them on LinkedIn while you have a class with them, while you see them every day over Zoom, and while you know them better than you might five years from now is extremely valuable.
You never know who might be able to lend you a hand in the future. Networking is vital, especially as students!