What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs,

blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and

format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

  • after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.
  • after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Main image courtesy of : https://www.flickr.com/photos/julian-bashore/3290261532

Three weeks ago, I got the email telling me that I had gotten into the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland. Immediately, I started to think about all the connections I would make in the coming years. Amicable imagery of hand-shaking and business conferences danced in my head as I went to bed that night.

Yesterday, reality hit hard.

My orientation yesterday happened nothing like one might have predicted a year ago. Instead of extending my hand to introduce myself to my new adviser, my hand searched for a pack of belVita biscuits as I stared at a woman and a Prezi over Zoom.

Yesterday, I learned that the COVID-19 pandemic would eliminate most of the in-person events and conferences I had eagerly anticipated in the business school. I’m thankful that I realized that I still have the ability to make connections virtually and effectively even if my hand remains without shake.

While we don’t have access to in-person interactions anymore due to coronavirus, college students can use online resources and social media to reach out for opportunities with companies, industries, or people. Virtual networking offers fantastic insight and possible jobs for college students trying to make the most of the pandemic.

From college student to college student, I’d love to help you with strategies I’ve learned on how to network efficiently. My hope is that you’ll find these tips for virtual networking useful with or without a pandemic in your path.

Build a friendship = build a network

bar of gold with words on top that say the golden rule for every business is this: put yourself in your customers place
source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/stickergiant/8594776133

“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” the Golden Rule states.

If you want to connect with potential mentors or employers, treat them as you would like to be treated.

We all want time, attention, and respect from the people we interact with on a daily basis. You wouldn’t want to be in a friendship with someone who ignores you in conversation or continually neglects to follow up about scheduling a hangout. You won’t have fun texting with this person if you keep getting left on read.

As a college student, learn to treat connections in business as people rather than stepping stones for your career. You can be yourself and still act polite in the business world. Your unique presentation and honest interest in what a person has to say will reciprocate the same friendliness from that person toward you.

During the pandemic, try to form these relationships by reaching out to professionals virtually. Send an email or a message on LinkedIn. Instead of sending a form letter to every person you reach out to, personalize your message so that more of your charisma will shine through in your interaction with each person.

Research not only helps you to write that final paper in college, but researching the background and expertise of an individual will demonstrate that you care about paying attention to and learning from a professional. Don’t email professionals to tell them that you know their Social Security Number or the middle names of their children. 

Avoid the creepiness by focusing on details of their life that appear obviously public. A tidbit from a published blog, interview, or LinkedIn profile won’t likely alarm your targeted audience. Don’t look for information on personal pages, like Facebook or Instagram accounts. You don’t need too much background information to start a conversation as long as you present an excited interest in their field.

This past week, I had a great Zoom call with Sherry Woosley, Senior Director of Research & Analytics at MacMillan Research, a wonderful human being who I cited in one of my previous articles. I wanted advice on the field of data analytics so I sent her a short and sweet message on LinkedIn. Not only did we get to talk about data analytics but we got to talk about the pandemic and how we had been affected in our respective parts of the country. 

Since I reached out to her, she has given me advice on quantitative data analytics as well as picking a major and career path. I started talking to her with a quick, friendly message of less than 300 characters and I’m thankful I did. Had I not taken the time to ask this accomplished stranger for help, I would have much more insecurity about my college career.

Choose quality over quantity in your emails

scale with the two words on either side that read quantity and quality
Source: https://www.goodfreephotos.com/albums/vector-images/quality-vs-quantity-vector-clipart.png

Want to know how to get friendly with a ton of professionals? Don’t copy, paste, and send them all the same email.

Whether you’re a college student or a professional, no one likes loading up the inbox to find a spam email. Therefore, don’t get caught up in choosing to write countless emails that look and sound the same to 400 different people. 

If you don’t put effort and personalization into your emails, the recipient will probably think you sent them spam. You also have to run your emails past Google’s artificial intelligence, which becomes more keen at detecting spam every day.

There goes your connection already.

You can virtually capture the attention and favor of professionals by sending them emails that appeal to them personally. Like I said in the previous section, put yourself in the mindset of making a network of friends rather than a network of connections.

Making 50 great connections will serve you much better than making 500 loose ones. Staying at home during the coronavirus pandemic may motivate you to pursue your career online. Strive to make the best of a bad situation and make a tight group of professionals who you can go to for advisory. You never know who might want to connect you with a great job after college.

Follow up and keep in touch

email draft

You managed to get a response back from a professional, so now what?

You might feel awkward trying to establish a personal relationship with someone who is older than you and has arrived at a different stage of life than you. So what if you’re a college student? So what if your professional connection is a middle-aged CEO? More power to you if you follow up and nurture a friendship with this human success story.

Let go of your anxiety about checking in with a person from time to time. More likely than not, the professional who you want to mentor you has already taught or spoken to college students like you at an informational meeting or a conference.

Especially in the midst of COVID-19, checking in on a person to see how that person’s family and friends are faring means so much. By inserting a question like “How have you and your family been doing in relation to COVID?”, you let recipients know that they are interacting with a human being rather than a college student looking for a favor.

Ask questions in order to increase the chance that you’ll receive more feedback from your recipient. If you choose not to ask questions in your messages, you lessen the obligation that a professional has to respond to you with much substance.

The pandemic provides a great time to get online and virtually connect with new people. Use this time to enjoy making a bond with other professionals by email or LinkedIn. 

Friendships don’t usually happen with just one email. Embrace the ones that you make while reaching out and following up with professionals. The friend you make could end up offering the job you take.

Reach out to your friends and family for work opportunities

group of friends smiling

While most of us don’t have in-person access to career fairs and clubs during the coronavirus pandemic, college students can help their careers by reaching out to friends, neighbors, and family members.

Don’t be shy when it comes to asking loved ones for advice or even work opportunities. As the famous rapper Wanz once told me at a party, “a closed mouth doesn’t get fed”.

Amid the spread of COVID-19, we may only get to interact with the people we know best. Reach out to these people so that you can act as a resource for connecting each other with opportunities when connecting in general looks more difficult. If you notice in conversation that your friend or family member’s company needs a new hire, speak up for yourself.

Two months ago, my friends and I socially distanced and chatted on a driveway in our neighborhood while we caught up on our lives during the pandemic. I had just published a book and mentioned that my publisher wanted to find an intern to help as an editor. I didn’t think much of the statement, but someone else in my circle of friends did.

That night, one of my friends texted me and asked me more about the situation of the publication company. After I talked more about my experience with the company, she asked if I could connect her with my publisher to see if the company wanted to consider her as a new editor.

As a freshman in college, I had never been in a situation of recommending another student for a job. However, I happily connected my friend with my publisher because I wanted to help her as well as my publisher succeed. 

My friend further reached out to the publisher online and got the job within the week. She set an awesome example of how to network effectively and virtually during a pandemic by working with both people she knows and people she didn’t know.

Don’t set yourself back by focusing too much on how a person will react to your message because of how well that person knows you. Be honest, be yourself, and be a friend.

Stay safe and stay connected during the COVID-19 pandemic

two people on a video call with masks

Coronavirus and college do not create a sensational combination. 2020 has not gotten along well at all with college students. We’ve had to adapt to learning online and we’ve had to focus on connecting online too.

We know now more than ever the importance of staying connected. Whether we want to focus on our connections in business, our connections close to home, or both, we want a set of tools that will help us to know that our lives remain on the right track.

Treat your new connections like your friends, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. We may have to continue networking online as college students, but learning how to build friendly relationships effectively can only serve to increase our chances at meaningful relationships, career insight, and job opportunities.