Using LinkedIn Alumni to Explore Careers and Majors

Using LinkedIn Alumni to Explore Careers and Majors

If you want to make a career change,  choose a career, or choose a major, LinkedIn Alumni is a helpful addition to other career information resources that opens your mind to career and education options.
 
Because LinkedIn Alumni is organized around schools and studies instead of occupations, it’s really best used as a turbo-charged “what can I do with a major in” career exploration tool. And despite the word “Alumni,” anyone can use it, college graduate or not.
 
Getting Started: First, click on LinkedIn Alumni and choose a college or university.  You don’t have to be a school’s graduate or current student to see information about its graduates. It could be a school you’re interested in attending, a big university near you, or a school you attended.
1. Look at the types of jobs listed for a field of study, exploring those that interest you.
After you’ve chosen a school, click on “what [graduates] studied” in the 4thcolumn over.  You’ll see the graph adjust and narrow to graduates of that field. 
 
You can also start by narrowing results based on the type of job first, called “What they do”, and then field of study. If you’re already focused on careers in education, then start there.
 
2. Notice the types of skills most listed by graduates in a field of study.
When you choose a field of study, notice the column next to it “What they’re skilled at.” Take a note of skills you have on that list and those you don’t; this will give you ideas for ones to focus on and strengthen.
 
3. After choosing categories of “What they do” and “What they studied,” look at individual job titles and profiles by clicking “3rd connections + Everyone Else” in the “How you are connected” column.
 
Scroll down to see the people listed. Are there any job titles that surprise you? Interest you? Consider these people as possible sources for information interviews.  Even if the person lives far away or there is no realistic way to make a connection to them, you might search locally for someone similar, working in a similar type of job.
 
To avoid getting overwhelmed by information, you’ll need to tailor your search to what interests you most. For example, you could get indicators of job outlook in certain geographic areas (where they live) and the most popular employers (where they work).  The best thing is to just dive in and look around.