For any designer out there who is not a member of AIGA, I say go! Join! Network! Swim in the creative sea of the design community! Seriously, they are a fantastic resource for all things design, and if you are looking for networking events or a job, they have a substantial listing for both. Networking! Yea!
Okay, I will be the first to admit that networking is not a strong point of mine. It is, in fact, a rather noodley point. I am, like many introverted people — introverted, Midwestern people, I might add – loath to walk up to someone with the purpose of making a professional connection, especially when it involves talking about my own skills. Yikes x2.
The fabulous thing about AIGA events, however, is that they make networking crazy-easy. You show up. You put on a name tag (oh, yes you do). You mingle with other like-minded individuals. You make a connection or two. That, friends, is what makes it easy: the crowd has been previously winnowed down for you to include those people with whom you already have something in common.
Lest I get unnecessarily windy about this particular point, I will just reiterate: Join AIGA. You will be so much more than just "not sorry."