By Danielle Laban, NLU’s Director of Student Experience
Usage of general social media has increased nationally by almost 1,000% within the last decade, especially by those between 18 and 29 years of age, according to the Pew Research Center. According to a survey conducted by UCLA, 27.2 percent of students spent more than six hours per week on some form of social media in 2014, up from 19.9 percent in 2007.
Also, data presented by Snelling.com, a leader in the employment industry, communicated that 86% of employers are checking social media before they grant an interview. Moreover, today 94% of grad schools inquire about a student’s online posts.
It’s important to start thinking about how your presence on social media can influence your professional trajectory as you work through college as a budding professional. It’s important to think strategically about how you can keep your personality alive, while not scaring away potential internships or job opportunities. Here’s some food for thought as you make your online “footprint” the next time you tweet, check in, and share:
- Delete any negative or controversial posts, check-in locations, and pictures.
- Employers and university personnel can do an internet search of your profile.
- Remember that the internet is not a secure place. For example, when using the Snap Chat technology, individuals can take screenshots of what you send them. So be careful of what you send to your peers via social media.
- Make a decision to let someone whose opinion you value highly (parents, favorite aunt, mentor, etc.) provide you feedback on what you want to post on social media.
- Set up a Google Alert for your name, so when a photo of you has been tagged or anyone mentions your name, you will know.
- Highlight and post about the events, programs or student clubs you participate in at NLU. If you volunteer, attend campus activities, or learn something new in class, be sure to write about it online. Make it your Facebook status or Tweet about it, or better yet start a blog about how awesome your experience is with NLU.