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Networking in the Public Interest Community

The ability to build professional relationships will serve you well not just when looking for jobs, but at all points in your career. It is an essential skill. Not only does it open doors to career opportunities, a strong professional network allows you to more effectively do your job in any employment setting.If networking seems cheap and phony to you,think again. Networking is not schmoozing. Networking will produce contacts who can help you help your clients, and who will become your mentors, peers, and friends. When you meet new professional contacts:

  1. be sincere and be genuine,
  2. demonstrate an interest in the work they do and their organization's mission (instead of spending the whole time "selling" yourself), and
  3. if you would like to follow up with them in the future, ask for a business card or contact information.

View tips from Harvard Law School's Office of Public Interest Advising.