5 LinkedIn Profile Must-Haves in High School

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LinkedIn is especially important in the hunt for any job, internship, or professional development opportunity. Whether you’re a high school student just starting your career or a recent college grad, your profile should reflect both a professional and polished presence.

When starting on LinkedIn or improving your profile, you want to ensure it is as complete as possible for potential employers as it’s their first impression of you. Here are the must-haves you need on your profile to ensure you’re reflecting your best self.

❗Side Note: This is general advice, so be sure to consider more than the must-haves listed here. Different expectations depend on the fields you’re trying to break into so try to look at the people’s profiles in your desired career.

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Like social media apps, LinkedIn is an important networking tool! Image from Pixels

1: 🖼️ Setting Up Your LinkedIn Profile Picture 🖼️

Usually, the first thing a potential employer sees when they hit on your profile is your picture. You want your first impression to be good enough that they continue to look at your profile.

The headshot you use for your profile should be clear and bright. If possible, you should be wearing business casual attire and get them done by a professional, but a personal photo can work as long as you look put together.

Bonus Tip: Many colleges and universities have career fairs or opportunities where they take your headshot for free. Be sure to take advantage of all your school has to offer!

For more tips, check out this article from LinkedIn!

2: ⭐ Writing Your LinkedIn About Section ⭐

Below your header with your profile picture and background photo, you want to make sure you fill out your "about section" properly. This is where you get to tell potential employers what you are currently looking for in terms of the job market and industry you’re in.

It’s common to write a strong personal statement that includes an ask of some sort. This way, those viewing your profile can directly help you with whatever you ask of them.  

Example: “I am looking for opportunities in [insert industry here] and looking to connect with people who [can help on my internship search, can share their expertise on their job, etc.”]

3: 🗓️ Make Sure to Include Up to Date Experience 🗓️

You want your profile, in general, to be as updated and accurate as possible. Your work experience is no exception. Showcase your experience, and feel free to show off a bit here. Like your resume, list bullet points below each experience with your responsibilities and accomplishments at each job.

Figuring out exactly which work experiences to choose to include can be tricky. Any experience in the industry you desire to be in should definitely be included. If you don’t have any experience in the industry yet, try to include the work experiences where the responsibilities or skills used most closely align with your dream job.

4: ✨ Engaging in LinkedIn Activity ✨

Consistent effort on LinkedIn is a must-have. When a potential employer visits your page, they want to see what you’ve been doing on the site and the type of professional interests you have.

Reposting from your favorite companies and keeping your connection up to date on your professional life is important. They want to know that you’re still active on your account rather than wasting their time reaching out to someone who is no longer active.

5: 📍 Why Your LinkedIn Location/Industry Info Is Important 📍

Somewhere on your LinkedIn, it would be best if you had the industry you want to be in listed as well as where you’re currently living or where you’re open to moving for a job opportunity.

The overall goal is to have all of the information that a potential employer could possibly need laid out on your LinkedIn profile.

Having the information clear and simple makes it more likely for recruiters or other potential employers to reach out to you. It also makes it easier when you try to connect with someone so they can quickly gauge if you could be mutually beneficial.

Side note: If you are open to taking work opportunities remotely, you should make a note of that somewhere on your profile! Since coronavirus, remote work has become increasingly popular, so you don’t want to limit your opportunities to just in person.

Whether you’re looking for a work opportunity or if you’re looking for a mentor to help you navigate your industry of choice, you should be prepared to start. Once you have all of the must-haves laid out on your LinkedIn profile, you’re ready to face the professional world.

Good luck with your networking!

If you’re looking for more experience in your field to add to your LinkedIn profile, check out Forage, the go-to platform for career discovery, learning, and recruiting straight from employers.

For more tips on building your LinkedIn profile, check out these Fiveable content!

For networking tips, check out these Fiveable content!

Author: Erica Burns, Forage Content Writing Intern

Erica Burns is a senior at Temple University studying English and political science and is currently a Content Writer Intern with the Forage. She is passionate about writing, all types of literature and politics, specifically environmental and human rights.

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