Develop Your Professional Network Through Alumni Connections

Not everyone realizes when they start college, they begin a lifelong relationship with the university and everyone who attends it. Alumni networks can land you informational interviews, promotions, and access to exclusive job postings. For people brave enough to start their own company, investors are more likely to invest in startups founded by alumni. A venture capital study spanning 19 years found that 1 in 3 investments happen between alums. Strong alumni networks can make or break a career/company’s launch.

Colleges aren’t the only places that build alumni networks, however. 98% of Fortune 500 Companies maintain their own alumni program. Their motivations for having one are slightly different than a college’s. While universities look to their alumni for fundraising, corporations seek referrals, business development, and mentorship. Having alumni as a brand advocate is worth at least 5 times more than an average customer.

In both cases, aspiring professionals should lean on their alumni networks to get ahead. Volunteer for alumni committees and events when they arise. Mention your alma mater in cold emails and LinkedIn messages. You’ll be surprised about the community and meaningful relationships you can find. Old classmates can give you the level up in career development.

The Power of Influence Networks
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