"Companies aren't responding to me, what should I do?"
This typically means one of two things.
1. The company has a lot of applications to go through and will eventually get to your application. They could also be waiting until applications close to process the applications.
2. You have been ghosted. This typically means that the company has found more suitable candidates and has decided not to continue with your application and thus will ignore you until the places for the program have closed and will likely send you a rejection email/letter then.
In both the situations you should do what you should have been doing. Continue applying to other programs and sharpen both your interviewing and technical skills. Don't get too disheartened if you company continually doesn't repsond to enquiries.
Do grades matter?
Grades may not matter as much as they used to but they are still used in the recruitment process. Some companies may desginate a cutoff mark for grades, while othersmay use grades as the simplest form of weeding out candidates. The higher your CWA compared to other candidates, the better off you will be.
Some companies go to great lengths to verify your grades (asking for an official transcript), but the majority may not ask for them at all. It typically depends on the company. Different types of companies value grades differently. Trading and finance firms weight grades heavily in the application process, especially grades for Math unit.
So depending on the type of company you apply for - and your CWA - you may find that your application gets automatically filtered out and rejected if you don't meet the cutoff.
Does it matter which university I go to?
This is easy to see, for example, if you go to social media pages of large technology companies in Australia you'll often see them promoting campus events. Most of these campus events are localised to selected universities, usually in Sydney and Melbourne. This is because a lot of large companies are based in these cities, or they have had good results from previous recruitment events in these universities.
This however, does not mean you're screwed if you don't go to one of these universities. During my internship I met people from many different universities, even different countries (New Zealand!). To me, success in university is highly dependent on the effort you put in. Whether you try and reach out to develop some meaningful connections or you hunker down and build some interesting projects. Find what you like to do, find out what you enjoy doing and do it well.
Should I make a LinkedIn profile?
Is there a good reason not to?
A good LinkedIn profile can be a good opportunity for you to detail out your experiences in a way that is appealing to recruiters. LinkedIn as a platform is also good for networking with various people and is one of the primary platforms that recruiters use. You might not find it useful as a student but it will be beneficial later on in your career it may be helpful. Why not start now?
For me a LinkedIn profile provided a platform for me to connect to recruiters and company directors who were looking for developers. This made it really easy to find a role that I would enjoy.
How important is networking?
It depends on the career you are looking for.
If you're looking for a cyber security job in Perth for example, networking is incredibly important. There aren't many cyber security firms in Perth so getting to know some people can be the key for getting your foot in the door. The easiest way to get a headstart for a position is knowing people.
Don't disregard meetups. The SecTalks (security talks) is a great way to meet cyber security people in Perth and can give you an insight into the industry.
Should I have public projects?
Anything that makes you stand out will help.
Public projects refers to either a Bitbucket or Github account which has public access to projects. Usually as a student the projects on these platforms will be your assignments. These aren't useful as personal projects but can still help.
Try to do some projects in your spare time, and make it something you're interested and passionate about. Whether that's the Android app you've always wanted to make, or that website that you wish was out there. It's always great to show a passion for coding outside of your regular class assignments.