Networking allows you to discover and understand the industry you will be working in when you leave full-time education. It allows you to build your contacts and opens up a world of opportunities for when you graduate.
Networking events range from the formal to the informal. Informal events could be free beer and pizza in a local spot with your classmates and some of the key people in companies where you might like to work. A formal event might be a presentation about cutting edge technology in your field.