Why Networking Is The Most Important Part of College

Why Networking Is The Most Important Part of College

Not about what you know, but who you know
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A strange concept college is – you pay tens of thousands of dollars to learn. And ultimately nothing could come of it if you do not put yourself in a good position.


There are a variety of percentages that I can throw at you describing the number of students that exit college with debt. But the point is, many collegiate students exit school with a degree, and need a way to pay back their debt. This means that after four years of working long into the early morning, preparing presentations and speeches, studying, averaging under five hours of sleep if that, and being broke all along the way, you have a good chance of entering the real world already in the hole.

So that ever-important goal of landing your dream career is not only ideal but essential. I personally did not know this until I was researching it myself, but basically, less than 20 percent of graduates have career type jobs after leaving school (less than 20 percent sounds at least a little better than the real number).

That's a scary figure. One out of every five people. So that means if you get in a full car of people to go out on a Friday night after class, only the driver is getting his/her career job when you all walk the stage and receive that elusive diploma.

The Washington Post gives some suggestions as to why this may be so; one example being that universities do not equip students with the right tools in the career services office. While I agree that sometimes schools may not be preparing students to directly enter the job field they intend to, it is hard to not only set thousands of students up with careers but have enough time to guide each student individually.

In my opinion, that is why networking is the most important part of the college journey. You can get a 4.0, dump $200,000 into your school (or loan line) and graduate with nothing. (Yes, if you have a perfect GPA and are shelling out top dollar at a top of the line school you are likely to be recruited, but you get the point).

As a more personal example, I'll use myself. Freshman year I did really well academically. I had that aspect all-together and was still able to have fun and enjoy my first year at Coastal Carolina. But I had no involvement. I wasn't a part of any club or organization, I wasn't scouting out internships, and I wasn't looking for opportunities. There were people with the same level of social involvement I had, but had lesser grades. But they were involved in organizations, fraternities, and sororities, or career-oriented assemblies.

If you're a part of a hiring team, who do you choose. The person you have known for years, first hand seen the level of involvement that they present, how dedicated their work ethic is, and feel like you can trust? Or do you hire the applicant who has a great grade point average and no involvement attached to their resume, no hands on experience to show?

Seems like no contest.


Grades are important, I'll be the first to attest to that. Spending long nights in the library, making hundreds of useless flashcards, and getting assignments done before the due date are part of my routine. But I've realized a lot of the time in this world it's not necessarily about what you know. The real world is often like a fraternity party. So when you show up at the world's front door, you better have a good answer to the question, "Who do you know here?"

Cover Image Credit: effectivesoftwaredesign.com

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To The Girl Who Had A Plan

A letter to the girl whose life is not going according to her plan.
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“I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.” - William Ernest Henley

Since we were little girls we have been asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” We responded with astronauts, teachers, presidents, nurses, etc. Then we start growing up, and our plans change.

In middle school, our plans were molded based on our friends and whatever was cool at the time. Eventually, we went to high school and this question became serious, along with some others: “What are your plans for college?” “What are you going to major in?” “When do you think you’ll get married?” “Are you going to stay friends with your friends?” We are bombarded with these questions we are supposed to have answers to, so we start making plans.

Plans, like going to college with our best friends and getting a degree we’ve been dreaming about. Plans, to get married as soon as we can. We make plans for how to lose weight and get healthy. We make plans for our weddings and children.

SEE ALSO: 19 Pieces Of Advice From A Soon-To-Be 20-Year-Old

We fill our Pinterest boards with these dreams and hopes that we have, which are really great things to do, but what happens when you don’t get into that college? What happens when your best friend chooses to go somewhere else? Or, what if you don’t get the scholarship you need or the awards you thought you deserved. Maybe, the guy you thought you would marry breaks your heart. You might gain a few pounds instead of losing them. Your parents get divorced. Someone you love gets cancer. You don’t get the grades you need. You don’t make that collegiate sports team. The sorority you’re a legacy to, drops you. You didn’t get the job or internship you applied for. What happens to you when this plan doesn’t go your way?

I’ve been there.

The answer for that is “I have this hope that is an anchor for my soul.” Soon we all realize we are not the captain of our fate. We don’t have everything under control nor will we ever have control of every situation in our lives. But, there is someone who is working all things together for the good of those who love him, who has a plan and a purpose for the lives of his children. His name is Jesus. When life takes a turn you aren’t expecting, those are the times you have to cling to Him the tightest, trusting that His plan is what is best. That is easier said than done, but keep pursuing Him. I have found in my life that His plans were always better than mine, and slowly He’s revealing that to me.

The end of your plan isn’t the end of your life. There is more out there. You may not be the captain of your fate, but you can be the master of your soul. You can choose to be happy despite your circumstances. You can change directions at any point and go a different way. You can take the bad and make something beautiful out of it, if you allow God to work in your heart.

SEE ALSO: To The Girl Patiently Waiting With An Impatient Heart

So, make the best of that school you did get in to. Own it. Make new friends- you may find they are better than the old ones. Apply for more scholarships, or get a job. Move on from the guy that broke your heart; he does not deserve you. God has a guy lined up for you who will love you completely. Spend all the time you can with the loved one with cancer. Pray, pray hard for healing. Study more. Apply for more jobs, or try to spend your summer serving others instead. Join a different club or get involved in other organizations on campus. Find your delight first in God and then pursue other activities that make you happy; He will give you the desires of your heart.

My friend, it is going to be OK.

Cover Image Credit: Megan Beavers Photography

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The ABCs of My First Weeks at College

But why are there never paper towels in the community bathroom?

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And I'm lost again….

But why are there never paper towels in the community bathroom?

Can you have a mid-life crisis at 18?

Drunk people. Lots and lots of drunk people.

Empty rooms...wait, people are already dropping out???

Face breaking out. Is it from all the dessert or the stress?

Golf, school, and clubs, do I really have time for it all?

How am I supposed to get down from this bed without hurting myself?

I don't know anyone here.

Just forget about quiet hours, they apparently don't exist.

Kainotophobia-fear of change.

Late nights...doing homework...totally not watching a movie.

Making sure you have snacks for every occasion and mood.

Naps. All the naps.

Oh sh-! I have class in 5 minutes!

Please let there be good food for lunch.

Questioning whether I should drop out and work at McDonalds for the rest of my life.

Required activities until 11pm during Week of Welcome?! Why can't I just go to bed????

So much debt. Lots and lots of debt...

This class is killing my soul...and it's only the second day.

Um, did you say free????

Very loud people next door.

What is sleep?

Xtra sketchy washing machines. Why must they flood every use?

You best believe I'm procrastinating homework for Netflix.

Zipping across campus because you only have 10 minutes between classes.

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