Networking Emails

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Writing for networking requires a balance of professionalism, research, and follow-through.  Many recruiters receive a large number of emails, and therefore writing for networking requires writers to be concise and direct, while still professional.

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Emails after a Career Fair

Career fairs are an exciting way to meet with companies that are looking for undergraduate and graduate students for internships and full-time jobs. During a career fair, be sure to keep track of several pieces of information regarding each company you interact with, such as company contact name, their contact information, some brief notes about your conversation topic, and the position you’re interested in.

Emails should be timely. Recruiters will be interacting with many students and will be quickly looking through applications and resumes that they have received. Any networking email should be sent within 24 hours after the career fair. A quick response will give you a better chance of being noticed again by a recruiter.

Emails should be concise and meaningful. An email post-career fair should mention something about the interaction you had with the recruiter or company representative. You can tailor this message to reflect your own interests or experiences.  

"I appreciated the insights you shared on [company]'s recent sustainability initiatives. As a [relevant major] student I find it important to work for a company that also values sustainability."

Emails should have a call-to-action. Post-career fair emails should end with a goal in mind. The conversation you have with a company representative or recruiter can give you insight on what the next steps would be. Adding meaningful details  helps the recruiter remember you, shows that you have a connection to work the company does, and further boosts your credibility as a potential candidate. 

Example follow-up email: "Thanks again for speaking with me today. I've submitted an application for the finance internship, would you be willing to chat further next week?" "I appreciate the time you took speaking with me and offering to connect me with your colleague who knows more about the position I'm applying for. Could you introduce us over email?"

Keeping your email concise, detail-oriented, and with a call-to-action will help you build relationships following an on-campus career fair.

Sample Email: John, Thanks for speaking with me at the University of Illinois Career Fair today about your marketing internship! It was interesting to hear about [Company Name]'s recent successes and how your team has grown to meet these challenges. I've experienced these similar challenges when growing my Student Organization and found that I enjoy the challenge of transition. My application for the summer internship has been submitted, and I'm excited at the prospect of interviewing for this internship. Sincerely, [Your Name]

Post-Interview Emails

A tradition of job-searching and interviewing has been to send a card to the individuals who interviewed you thanking them for their time. It has become easier (and for some companies preferable) to send follow up emails instead of a card. These emails follow a few basic principles

Post-Interview Emails should:

  • Thank the person for their time
  • Re-establish your connection to the person
  • Be personalized and specific
  • Be confident and future-thinking

Sample thank you email: Dear [recipient], Thank you for taking the time to interview me for the [Position] internship at [Company Name]. I'm excited to join a company such as yours that [Insert specific fact or note about the company that came up during the interview]. With my background and experiences, I believe I'd be a great fit. I look forward to hearing from you. Have a great afternoon. [Your Name]

Emails on LinkedIn

LinkedIn Logo

Communication over Linkedin should be similar to emails as discussed above: concise, meaningful, and action-oriented. Two types of emails specific to LinkedIn include writing to connect with someone you’ve met or to introduce yourself to someone who you have not met before but share a connection with.

Connection requests. When adding other users to your network, or “Connections”, it is common courtesy to include a brief message with the request. This message is very short, so prioritize the connection you made or a way to remind them about how you met. 

Example connection text: Hi [Name], It was great meeting you at the alumni mixer last night. I hope to see you at more [organization name]'s events! Hi [Name], we met briefly at the Writers Workshop presentation this past Friday. I wanted to connect to stay in touch since you said opportunities to get involved would be announced soon. Thank you for speaking with me at the Graduate Career Fair! I appreciated our conversation about [specific detail of their program]. What is the best way to arrange a follow-up meeting?

These messages may or may not need to include a call-to-action. Consider the professional relationship you are looking to develop and how this message can assist your goal. 

LinkedIn messages to introduce yourself. When messaging a connection who you haven’t met but have something in common with, it’s important to be professional and clear about your intention. It’s always best to have either a connection or a referral to the person with someone you both know. Here’s one example:

Example LinkedIn Message: [Name], My name is [name] and I am a current student in the MBA program at the Gies College of Business. When looking for alumni doing project management in the Chicago area, my career advisor referred me to you. Would you be open to an informational interview? I’d like to learn more about your experience in this field. Thank you, and I look forward to hearing back, [Your Name]

LinkedIn Dos and Don’ts 

When communicating over LinkedIn, no matter the purpose, there are a few general rules to know:


  • Be professional and formal
  • Be clear about your intention when communication
  • Include how you know someone or
  • Include how you were referred to the person


  • Send a connection request without a message
  • Directly ask someone for a job

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