HBCU Students How To Benefit from LinkedIn
by William Jackson M.Ed.
Edward Waters College @wmjackson
#MyQuestToTeach – My Brand
“new research from LinkedIn and CarringtonCrisp
shows that social media can help drive quality at all
points of the student journey — from quality candidates
to successful graduates.” Ira Amilhussin
The use of LinkedIn should be strategic and planned,
building reputations, personalities, relationships and
developing Brands. “branding is your character in
the marketplace and you need it in order to effectively
promote your business, services/products, or yourself in
your arena.” Dawn Jordan Jones, CEO of 29Eleven Media
Your brand is present in everything that you
do and how you present it to the world.
Networking in many cases is an art, the art of building
relationships that can lead to internships, employment
opportunities and starting a career.
A global economy means global competition, and those
seeking prime careers need to be seen as contributing
content, being innovative in their thinking, building a
strong Brand, volunteering and “speaking” on issues
that influence the thinking of others.
The strategic application of LinkedIn comes when
HBCU students decide what area of study they’re in
and connecting with those in that desired field.
Too many HBCU students do not have LinkedIn
accounts that are active and engaged. HBCU students
need to be active, engaged, involved, concerned
and determined to be aware of what is going on in
their communities, cities, states and even the nation.
This may sound overwhelming, in some cases it can
be, so it takes changing the mindset.
The mindset of keeping up with drama, disrespecting
others with words and pictures. Sexting, Cyberbullying,
Slandering and even Colorism should not be shared
in the online environment.
The world establishes it opinion of HBCU students not
just from one Social Media account, but from millions.
Each HBCU student is accountable to the other because
we are bound by our brotherhood and sisterhood being
graduates of HBCUs. So we are all connected with color
and culture. We must show ourselves professional and
capable as doors open and glass ceilings are smashed.
LinkedIn is a diverse platform that can create collaborative
opportunities, bring together liked minded smart creatives,
connect innovators on projects and research never thought
before. LinkedIn can even provide training that HBCU
students need to be prepared to compete successfully in
a world of intellectual diversity.
Education is not just in the classroom, it is all round us in
conferences, workshops, seminars, meetups and with one
to one discussions. Professional development happens
when HBCU students share their experiences, resources
and tell their stories to each other.
What HBCU students need to do to be successful in
1. Complete your profile with all the required information.
*make sure you have current employment and educational
background information that is true and updated.
2. Write to be read by others of similar interest.
*make sure that you address current research and strategies,
be up to date on best practices and who is moving up in
3. Use as an extension of your network to build relationships.
*before you start asking for a job, build a relationship with
people, share content and even collaborate on projects.
4. Post relevant content that connects with similar thoughts.
*find people that think like you and share similar passions.
*also connect with people in areas you are curious to explore.
5. Get involved in groups and associations that have similar
goals and missions in careers.
*make sure you have your vision, mission, goal and career
6. Development as a “thought leader” is important to show
intelligence and intellectualism.
*understand the difference between intelligence and intellectualism
7. Endorsing and Recommendation of others that you follow.
*don’t be afraid to endorse and recommend others on their skills
and abilities, they will do the same for you.
8. Building your personal Brand and keep it safe.
*establish what your Brand is and build it.
*your Brand is your promise for professionalism
9. Sharing resources with others
*don’t be afraid to share resources, let people know that
you want to share their information to help others.
*don’t look at other HBCU students as competition, but as
10. Link your Blogging, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr accounts.
*linking provides exposure on multiple platforms and spreads
your influence faster.
11. Set a schedule to check LinkedIn so you’re not rushing.
*have a plan and a schedule to show consistency in your posting
of content and replying back to others.
12. Always check spelling and grammar when writing a post.
*the fastest way to turn people off is to not spell or grammar check
13. Reply to emails and connections in good timely manner.
*don’t wait a week later to reply, do so in a day or two.
14. Update your account with new information to show growth
in your community, career and as an entrepreneur.
*people love to see you grow so post it, whether volunteering,
working, internships, etc. share your successes and growth.
15. Talk to your career counselors at your school to see
how to further amplify your voice.
*communication with experts is important, network
with instructors and administrators.
*too many HBCU students see older faculty and pass
judgement on that person, they miss the opportunity
to expand their network to established and senior
16. Be respectful, be business, be progressive and be seen.
*act and show you want to be successful
*hangout with people doing what they are supposed to
be doing and moving in that direction.
17. Make sure you upload a professional photo,
this sets the foundation for your level of professionalism.
*never use a club, party or entertainment photo.
*think about what if a Google, Black Enterprise, Jet
or other executive would think if they saw your photo.
18. Visibility is important in your community, post your
activities when you volunteer or do works to help others.
* tell your story of mentoring, tutoring, volunteering and
being a community activist.
*instead of talking about making a change show that you
are making a change.
19. Invite others to connect with you, you have to look
*be approachable so people can get to know who you
are and your goals.
*you do not have to share personal information, but you
must look like you want to be engaged and active.
20. When you earn degrees, certificates, etc make sure
you post your successes in a humble manner.
*what is the use of putting your degree in the closet or
drawer, share and see how your network expands.
21. Haters will be haters..
*sometimes you have to drop friends that become envious
and threatened by your growth.
*remember whose life it is any way and you only have one.
Connect – Connect – Connect
YouTube and LinkedIn