How to Seek Assistance From Alumnae
The art of networking involves making use of your existing, or expanded list of contacts to research a particular location, to identify potential employers, and to learn about jobs which may interest you.
Networking contacts may be found among:
- Family and relatives
- Friends and neighbors
- School classmates, faculty, and administrators
- Community service/charitable organizations
- Political organizations
Typically, you write or call those people on your networking list, explain your career objectives, and ask whether they have ideas or suggestions about people you should be talking with in their community.
The Career Services Center at Sweet Briar, in conjunction with the Alumnae Association, offers specific networking services for students and alumnae. In addition to separate networking directories published by various alumnae clubs, the Career Services Center can create individualized, computerized lists of employed alumnae by a particular area and/or by a certain career field.
Hints for Working With Your Networking Contacts
- Ask for their ideas and suggestions of the names of people who could help you. Do not ask for a job or specific job information.
- Be as specific as possible about your career goals and objectives.
- Supply a copy of your current resume as quickly as possible.
- Ask permission to be able to say "Ms. ________ suggested that I contact you."
- If a contact is unable to help you, ask whether there is someone else you should be contacting in that area or career field.
- Keep your networking contacts up-to-date about your career progress.
- When you accept a job, notify your networking contacts and thank them for their help.
- Be prepared to help others network just as you have been helped. It's good for your career, good for Sweet Briar, and good for you!