What image are you projecting?
In an article in the newsletter for the Overseas Association for College Admission Counseling, Shaun McElroy points out that students beginning the college search process need to be aware that the lines between public and private lives are increasingly blurred. Many high school students keep blogs and post items on various social media accounts. They know their friends are checking these; what they may not realize is that university admission officers or potential employers are also logging on.
An FBI agent warns young people that the “minute you choose to put something out there, the second you hit the send button, you’ve lost total control over how that info will be disseminated.” According to the National Association for College Counselling, about a quarter of U.S. colleges report conducting research on applicants on social networking sites or through Internet search engines.
Some helpful tips:
- Make sure that your email address is professional. It is best to use your UCC account.
- When you are communicating with university officials, write in a formal manner. Don’t use text message format.
- Take a careful look at the photos and comments you are posting on social media websites. Would you want your parents or grandparents to see what’s there? If not, then you don’t want admission officers viewing such material. Even items you remove may be viewable later by experienced Internet users.