For a fresh face coming out of college, hopping into industry can be a little tough to navigate. These days, I get asked a couple of times per week about how one might get involved in the tech community. People are looking for connections for starting their own companies or finding jobs at high-tech firms. Here are 3 ways that have proven to be successful for me.
1. Meet Ups
Meet Ups are locally hosted events that meet about specific topics. You can search for groups based on an interest and it will show you the closest group near you. If you're a leader-type, you are able to also start your own meet up. Check it out here at Meetup.com and if you're in Portland, Oregon - Calagator.com
Breaking into the tech seen can be challenging if you try to only leverage digital channels. Attending a conference by either paying for a ticket or volunteering, you can really build out a strong network within that industry. When I was fresh out of college, I attended LavaCon in Portland. Within 2 days, I not only had the chance to meet a ton of smart and interesting people, I had the chance to learn from the leaders of the conference, and was even offered a job. There are so many people at conferences, if you have enough time spent working / volunteering with others, people get a sense of what it working with you full time would be like. So get out and finda tech conference near you, then volunteer and make some new friends!
I was never a big forum guy, but recently the power of these forums has got me sold. Communities are sprouting up everywhere for specific groups of people. Want to get better at iOS Development? Great! Join the iOS Slack Group and iOS Linkedin Groups. IRC is another, more old school live chat forum that you can use to connect with others in the tech scene.
Depending on your goals there are a ton of ways to get involved.That said, if you are serious about getting into the tech industry, start with these 3 ways and plant your seeds for the guiding the future of tech.