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Networking Is Key For Job Hunters, Says

Networking Is Key For Job Hunters, Says

PRINCETON, N.J., Aug. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Most new jobs are filled by word of mouth, says, The Wall Street Journal's guide for career- minded college students. So if you're looking for a job, networking is a vital tool for gathering information and achieving your goal.

"Networking can be done anytime, anywhere-a train ride home, at a job fair or in a social setting," says Valerie Patterson, senior producer, "The most important first step in networking is to smile and be friendly -- you never know with whom you might strike up an important conversation." offers these tips on how to get the most out of networking:

* Know what you're looking for - speak succinctly about your talents, skills and goals. * Be assertive - networking means that you are working toward your goal -- advancement in your career-so don't be afraid to promote yourself. * Curb the desperation and start listening - instead of asking someone for a job, listen to their advice. Most people love talking about themselves, so use this to your advantage by asking questions about their backgrounds and professional choices. * Use your most valuable tools - always have handy an up-to-date resume, as well as business cards with your contact information. * Stick with it - networking can be full-time work. The best networking produces contacts that can benefit you in the long term.

"Don't get discouraged if don't immediately find a job," Ms. Patterson adds. "Concentrate on new ways and places to network."

For more information, visit About is The Wall Street Journal's free site for undergraduate, graduate, and MBA students to obtain the job-search and career- guidance information they need to make the successful transition from collegian to professional.

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