Finals are almost over, and you are one semester closer to graduation! Definitely take some time to relax and enjoy yourself after all of the hard work that you put into this past semester. You deserve it! But also make the most of your downtime by dedicating some time to career planning. The holidays are a great time for networking. Use your time away from the classroom to get out and meet people in the legal community or in the industry where you plan to pursue an alternative career. Florida Coastal alumni association events are a great way to meet people with whom you already have something in common. The Florida Coastal alumni association chapters in Washington DC, Pensacola, South Carolina, and Atlanta are all hosting holiday events over the break. If you are interested in working in any of those markets, don’t miss out on the opportunity to establish connections with Coastal alumni who could be valuable resources for you throughout your career. Click here for a listing of alumni association chapters and links to their Facebook group pages. If your city does not have an alumni association event over the break, look for events through the local bar association or other professional associations. In addition to holiday networking events, you can use your time in your target market to reach out to professionals for informational meetings. An informational meeting is an opportunity to get information and advice about a specific practice area or an alternative career. It is also a way to build a relationship with someone who is working in an area that interests you, and you never know where it might lead. Check out the Career Handbook for a step-by-step guide to informational meetings. If you don’t have a copy, stop by the CSD and pick one up before you leave for the break. Stay tuned for part two of making the most of your winter break, where I’ll discuss ways to incorporate social networking into your job search.