Tips on building an Ed network

Build off the resources you already have

  • Use your fellow students to connect to resources – current students have worked at over 79 organizations for field experiences
  • Consider some recurring internships that Ed Studies students have done every year – US Grant co-directors or teachers, NY State Dept. of Education internship with Khin Mai Ang, education journalism w/Jennifer Berkshire of Alternet and Have you Heard podcast
  • Meet w/ Ed Studies faculty & ask for their connections
  • Go to the Yale Office of Career Strategy and use their online database to connect with alumni, or look for job opportunities
  • Yale Alumni Educators FB page – 774 members, great place to post queries
  • Create a profile on LinkedIn. Connect with Yale Careers in Education & invite others to join.

Sending an intro email

Some of the best leads for research, internships and jobs come from people you don’t have any links to. When you’re emailing someone you don’t know, keep it brief and keep your ask minimal. Everyone has way too much email to respond to – a long message with multiple requests will be relegated to the “later” pile.

1. Make sure your heading is focused – “Request to come visit your program”

2. Aim to make your request in the 1st paragraph.

3. Have no more than 2 paragraphs in the first email. Keep it brief!

Here’s a version of one that I sent to a distinguished senior Professor when I was a graduate student. The request got me included in a small conference that was an ideal space to meet other colleagues. One of them became a dissertation Advisor!

Dear Professor X,

Greetings! I am a sociology graduate student at Yale University planning a dissertation working on middle class parents choosing urban/racially integrated schools.

Professor Y at Northwestern mentioned your conference at the ESS last year, and I’m so sorry to have arrived to the topic too late to have attended. I was particularly interested in your presentation on “Non-Decision Decisions” Unpacking the Process Whereby Parents Decide Where to Live” and was wondering if you have submitted it anywhere, and whether there is a version you might be ready to share. I’m currently writing up my dissertation lit review and prospectus.

Also, do you have a group mailing list? I would love to be in the loop for future events.

Best wishes, Mira