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Tips for Using Handshake Effectively

Over 500,000 companies are hiring on Handshake and it is Northwestern Career Advancement’s primary resource for connecting students with professional opportunities including jobs, internships, fellowships and career-related programming.

Handshake is also the best way to connect with a member of the NCA team to schedule an appointment.


Using Handshake for Your Job/Internship Search

To find new opportunities that match your interests:

  • Click “Job” > “All filters” > utilize any filters/keywords/location > “Show results” > view open positions > "Save your search"
  • Filters to find relevant opportunities include location, accepts OPT/CPT, year in school, paid/unpaid and specific industry and job functions (use the provided drop-down menus).
  • Graduate students can additionally select year in school (masters, PhD)
  • By saving your search, you will receive email updates when new, relevant opportunities related to your search criteria become available.

Engaging with Employers on Handshake

By selecting to “follow” an employer you will be notified of any job/internship postings or events they add:

  • Click “Jobs” > “Employers” > “Follow”

By doing this you will be notified any time an employer adds a posting, event, or makes a change.

The “Employer” section of Handshake also allows the option to filter based on areas such as location, company size, industry, etc. This can be a great way to learn about new, relevant employers you may not be familiar with.

Employers can also message you on Handshake, keep an eye on your messages for possible introductions and opportunities.

Your Handshake Profile

  • Save time by uploading your resume to auto-fill your profile with content.
  • Include a professional photo (similar to a LinkedIn photo).
  • Set your profile to be visible to employers, making it easier for them to engage with you.
  • Adding a short bio in the “My Journey” section of your profile will allow you to add more of your own voice and personality to your profile.
  • Update the “Your Interests” section on your profile to indicate types of opportunities you’re looking for, location preferences, roles, etc.


Selecting Career Interests on Handshake

To ensure you are getting the most out of Handshake and receiving targeted industry information including newsletters and program/event info, update your career interests in Handshake by:
  • Selecting your name/picture at the top of the screen > “Career Interests” and indicating industries/job functions of interest

In addition to industry-specific outreach, advanced degree students (Master's and PhD) will receive newsletters being sent by degree level. If you are not receiving an emailed newsletter by degree level, please reach out to your NCA adviser.


By selecting Your Name > Notifications > Edit Notification Preferences you can make decisions about how you want Handshake to notify you of interview offers and other communications.