One of the best ways students learn about options available to them after graduation is by observing and reflecting on those who have come before. To this end, our office, in partnership with the Alumni Relations Office, coordinates the opportunity for students to connect with alumni through the Earlham Career Network (ECN).
Connect with Alumni
Students who would like to access the ECN for mentoring and networking opportunities can contact the Career Education Office for more information. Our staff can search the ECN for keywords relating to location, major, graduation date, and/or job title. Once possible mentors are identified, our office will then provide you with their contact information. We ask students to please remember to be professional and respectful when reaching out to alumni for career guidance.
What is an informational interview?
An informational interview is an opportunity for you to ask questions of an alum or a professional in your field of interest. These interviews are not directly used to find jobs or internships, but are instead ways to gather information and gain insight into life after Earlham.
Informational interviews can help you find out more about your field of interest, learn about a certain company or organization, or understand a different perspective.
What should I ask in an informational interview?
Informational interviews are all about making connections and broadening your knowledge. Some potential questions include:
- Could you tell me about your career path?
- What was your first job out of Earlham or after college?
- What does a typical work day look like for you?
- What advice do you have for someone starting out in your field?
How do I find someone to interview?
Most people are open and willing to talk about their careers with young professionals. Reach out through your network of family and friends to find people working in your field of interest. You can also contact someone at a specific organization or company in which you're interested. If you would like to connect with alumni, visit the Career Education Office to learn about possible connections.
If you are looking to make a connection through email or social media, send a short and professional email to a person who works in a field or organization in which you are interested. In the email, make sure you:
- Include your name, college that you are attending, and major
- Explain why you are interested in connecting with them (to ask for their advice for a young professional and to learn about their career path)
- Ask them for twenty minutes of their time, either to meet for coffee (locally) or to have a brief phone conversation at a time of their convenience
- Thank them for their time and consideration
Above all, be courteous and curious.
Reach Out Through Social Media
Social media is a powerful tool for connecting with family, friends, colleagues, and people in your field of interest. Always remember to:
- Be professional on all your social media sites
- Keep your content updated
- Be present by commenting positively on what you see
- Connect with others, especially in your field, and offer help whenever possible
Ways to Connect
Check out our Professionalism and Social Media resource and talk to a Career Adviser about how to make the most of social media.
LinkedIn is a professional networking site which allows you to connect with people in your field of interest and highlight your professional experiences and achievements. Having a LinkedIn profile is a great way to take control of your professional image online, connect with others in your field and stay up-to-date with career-related news and information.
Twitter is a social media tool which uses short status updates called "tweets" to connect people all over the world. Twitter allows you to connect with people who are outside your normal network of friends, family, classmates, and coworkers.
Facebook is a social media site for connecting with friends and family. Facebook pages are also helpful for organizations looking to connect with their customers and partners.