Program & Join

Join a Professional Association


Whether you’re new or experienced in your field, there are many reasons for you to join a professional association. If you are new to a field, a membership in a professional association is a good way to supplement what you learn on the job. Membership also offers you great insight into an unfamiliar industry before you make a final decision to change your job.

Make Friends

Join different groups and you’ll rarely be lonely. Association members join groups because they want to meet cool people, so they are generally open to exchanging contact information and meeting outside of group-related activities. Even if you’re shy, the routine of attending regular meetings and group activities is an easy way to get acquainted with new people. You can attract friends by volunteering to hold a leadership position, like vice president or secretary. You can also learn more about people in a smaller setting by working on committees that are dedicated to specific things, like the party planning committee.

Improve Your Skills

You can learn things you never knew about your industry by attending professional association meetings. Groups usually have a variety of ways to improve members’ skills in modeling, and game simulation including guest speaker lectures and group discounts on software. Many computer and technology groups create workshops on technical skills and consider it a large part of their mission. Check the group’s event calendar for future events that can help you improve your job skills or make suggestions to the group leaders.

Find New Opportunities

As a member of an association, your participation gives others a preview of what you are like as an employee or boss. Many group activities, like hosting a fundraiser, require the use of time management, communication and negotiation skills. Stay with a group long enough and you’re bound to find incredible career opportunities. If you’re looking for a new job, a member may give you a tip on a new opening at his company. If you’re aware of new job opportunities, be helpful and let others know them. Even if people don’t get the job, you’ll be seen as someone who has valuable contacts and information. Since many people find work without blindly submitting resumes to companies, learning about new career opportunities is one of the most valuable assets of being a group member

Give Yourself Credibility

As a member of an association, you will be constantly exposed to new developments and information. Your membership makes you appear more dedicated and informed. For example, if a hiring manager has two resumes with similar experiences and education, the one with some experience as member of a professional association stands out more. Don’t hesitate to cite your membership as a useful asset during job interviews or when pitching an idea at work. It shows that you are truly interested and active in the industry.

Clearly, the time and money it takes to join and participate in groups is worthwhile due to so many great benefits. Professional groups can broaden your horizons in exchange for a little bit of time and money.