Linkedin Building Your Personal Profile

The Basics of LinkedIn: Building Your Profile and Network as a College Student

Written by Samantha Sito in Latest, Social Media on May 8, 2019

Are you a college student on LinkedIn?

Did you know that LinkedIn is one of the biggest social media platforms for job recruiters?

As college students, it’s never too early to start building an online presence and LinkedIn acts as a great supplement to your resume and overall job application.

Here are some of the basics of what you need to know to build your LinkedIn profile and network:

1. Choose a Professional Profile Picture

Think of your LinkedIn profile as your digital calling card. Everything about your profile shares something about who you are as a candidate for a job. You want to keep your resume professional regardless of your job experience and your display photo is an integral part of that.

You wouldn’t want to set a photo that is unprofessional or of low quality for employers to see as it might tarnish the rest of your profile.

That said, your photo also doesn’t have to be overly done up or require expensive equipment to take.

Good lighting, professional wardrobe and a good cell phone camera can create a great display photo!

LinkedIn-Basics of LinkedIn for College Students
LinkedIn-Basics of LinkedIn for College Students

2. Write a Strong Headline

LinkedIn works in similar ways to Google- it is a search engine.

When employers are head hunting for candidates, they will write the job they are looking to hire for in the search box.

Your goal is to appear in those search results!

Your headline should include keywords like the job position you currently hold OR if you’re a college student, you can include the job you WANT as your keywords.

An example: Looking to work in Human Resources

3. Beef Up Your Summary

So you’ve captured the attention of future employers with a great headline and profile photo, what next?

The summary of your profile gives the employer an insight on who you are, what your passions are and what you are looking for in a job! It’s similar to a cover letter introduction.

Here you can include more about yourself, your goals, a brief summary of your experiences and any other information you think is most important. This is your elevator pitch that sets the precedence for the rest of your profile!

LinkedIn-Basics of LinkedIn for College Students
LinkedIn-Basics of LinkedIn for College Students

4. Speak In-First Person

LinkedIn is different than a traditional resume because it allows you to be more personable!

In your summary and through your profile, try to write in a first person perspective. It gives more depth and personality to your overall profile.

5. Attach Previous Work to Your LinkedIn

The great thing about LinkedIn is that unlike traditional resumes, you are able to attach your work within your profile. This is particularly appealing if you are a creative and have portfolio or video work that you want to add into your digital resume.

In addition to that, all experience is good experience. If you are not yet a working professional and have limited part time or volunteer work as a college student, that’s still great to add!

Volunteer work provides good, transferable skills that can be brought over to other job opportunities!

At Alexander College, there are various opportunities to apply as a student worker on campus. In addition to that are a variety of volunteer opportunities on campus for student events! Find out more in our International Student Guide. 

LinkedIn-Basics of LinkedIn for College Students
LinkedIn-Basics of LinkedIn for College Students

6. Connect and Network with Other Professionals Online

Part of LinkedIn being a social media platform means that you should be social! Learn more about how to use Social Media to enhance your college experience here.

LinkedIn is a hub for people of all backgrounds and professions and finding similar minded people is a great way to build your network online and to connect. As they say, job opportunities frequently come through the people you meet and not just based on qualifications.

Follow, engage and create with the people you meet on LinkedIn. You can also find your friends and colleagues as well and help each other boost your profile through recommendations.

Another tip is to embrace getting recommendations and endorsements on LinkedIn!

This will help in adding more credibility to your profile. You can get recommendations from friends, colleagues, or individuals that you’ve worked with in the past.

In a nutshell, LinkedIn is a huge and greatly important social media platform that every college student should be on and develop through your college years!

You can also follow Alexander College on LinkedIn for news happening on campus and future job openings!


Author: 

Samantha Sito is the AC Social Media Coordinator and enjoys maximizing the benefits of using social media positively, while still having fun with the platforms. She also runs her own lifestyle blog + social media channels


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