The Adams Center hosted a session about the use of LinkedIn. Over the past couple of years, the question of LinkedIn has come up periodically in the Adams Center. LinkedIn is often seen as a professional networking space for those in the business world or specifically for individuals looking for another job. Faculty have questioned whether it is a useful tool for those in higher ed who are not looking for another job. The session panel consisted of Jill Fortson, Director of ACU’s Career Center; Brooke Nichols, the Career Center’s Career Network Specialist; and Asa Kusuma, ACU alumnus who is currently employed by LinkedIn working in web infrastructure.
Asa focused on some of the general benefits of LinkedIn as a social professional network. LinkedIn can help other people find you for a specific professional need and can help you find others as well. If you are looking for an intern or employee, LinkedIn provides a more streamlined way to accomplish this. LinkedIn also offers a space to share soft professional knowledge. In other words, people can interact with others in their professional spheres on a more personal basis. One key feature of LinkedIn is that it provides the ability to express gratitude to others. Its features also allow users to express their professional personality.
Jill and Brooke shared some specific ways ACU’s Career Center utilizes LinkedIn to assist students in networking. 90% of recruiters use LinkedIn and 80% of jobs are secured through referrals, so LinkedIn is a great resource for our students. The Career Center assists students in developing a strategy for looking for jobs. They can even check for ACU connections at companies of interest to them. The Career Center helps students build their profile on LI and teaches them how to connect professionally. The Career Center staff is eager and willing to come into classes to discuss LinkedIn and other networking opportunities.