The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

The Power of Networking

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The power of networking is the one common ingredient to success. Networking is something we all innately do, but any successful professional must network with a purpose within the confines of the work environment. It must become an integral part of daily life. In our modern day world of social media, we like to do everything via the Internet, but at the end of the day, it is good old-fashioned networking that ultimately helps the most. 

Networking is awkward. No one likes to do it. When the word networking is mentioned to me, the only thing I can think of is awkwardly standing around in a circle during some sort of company info session trying desperately to leave my mark. We all stand around the person of interest and ask our pre-planned questions that we really could care less about in the hopes that we will be able to distinguish ourselves from the rest of the pack. 

While networking can seem tedious, the greatest part about it is that the benefits are infinite and unexpected. During my winter break of freshman year, I attended a job shadow event that was being offered in my city. I went to the job shadow day just hoping to get an idea of what working in various industries was like and I actually ended up finding my summer internship through this networking experience. After meeting various people at the firm during my job shadow event, I realized that I was a solid fit for the company, but this wasn’t enough. I needed to follow up with the people at the firm to express my interest, which is how networking got me my first internship. 

Although networking can seem artificial and awkward, even to me, mastering it is key to success in any industry. Without networking, people have little to no hope of advancing along their chosen career path. 

--Written by Jasmine Xu ’16, MLDP Participant Fall 2013

The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences