Whether you are embarking on a new career or are already well along on your journey, identifying a mentor is a great way to build your professional network. Expanding your professional network provides you more opportunities for professional growth. It is important to understand how your professional connections can enhance your career goals, so take time to carefully identify and select the right individuals prior to making requests for your connections.
Mentorship is vital and often involves an individual who has the ability and desire to foster a relationship with you to provide professional advice and guidance. A great place to start building your network will be with people you currently know. Connect with members of professional organizations within your industry that are related to your personal interests. To attain the next level of success in your career, you must advocate for yourself. You need a team of people to help you along.
In this activity, you will explore ways to build your professional network. University of Maryland Global Campus students have access to a number of student and professional organizations within your chosen industry, which you can explore to learn more about the field. Internships, volunteering, mentorship, and connecting with alumni are just some of the opportunities available to help build your professional network.
Now that you know more about networking, mentorship, and the UMGC student organizations, answer the following questions:
- What steps will you take to build or expand your network?
- What are your short-term and long-term goals for networking?
- Which professional networks would be the most beneficial to you and why?