Recent surveys show that admission officers from top colleges visit the social networks to learn more about applicants. They Google the applicants’ online profile to know them better. So an applicant’s online image is very crucial and it may affect his chances of getting an admission in the desired college.
When you apply to a college just remember that these people may be looking at your social networking profile:
- The admission officers of the colleges that you have applied to.
- The teachers and people who are writing recommendation letters for you.
- Your potential boss for summer job or internship.
- Your new classmates.
- Your friends.
So what should you do? Should you pull the plug on your online life? Certainly not! In today’s world, virtual or online image is almost a parallel life. However, a negative online image may hurt your chances of admission and crash your dreams. So it’s important to clean up your online image. Here are some tips to have a clean and positive online image.
- Remove any photos that show you in any indecent dresses or poses.
- Remove photos that show you involved in any illegal activity like underage driving or taking drugs.
- Remove photos with alcohol. College administrators don’t want applicants with drinking problems.
- Remove photos that are explicit or sexually suggestive.
- Remove photos with rude gestures. That middle finger shot won’t amuse the admission officer.
- Remove any photos that portray you in negative light and make admission officers question your character or your judgment.
- Unsubscribe from any groups that are biased or show racism.
- Unsubscribe from groups that promote illegal activities, such as ‘I love booze’ or ‘ get stoned’.
- Don’t include your contact information such as your address and your phone number on your wall. It is a safety concern, and it will also show the admission officer bad judgment on your part.
- Lastly, put yourself in admission officers’ shoes. And think that what they wouldn’t like to see on your wall. So act accordingly.
On the other hand, you can actually use your online space to create a positive image of yourself. Think of it as an opportunity to promote yourself and improve your chances of acceptance. For instance you can:
- Post pictures that show you doing volunteer work or community service.
- Post pictures showing you involved in constructive activities such as reading to a kid, cleaning up your neighborhood etc.
- Post photos that show you winning a medal or trophy. These aren’t the kind of photos that you will attach in your resume, but if an admission officer stumbles upon these in your Facebook profile, then it will create a good impression.
- Post photos that show you scoring that winning goal. Your athletic abilities will definitely have a positive impact.
- Post pictures of your travelling. Colleges want applicants who are well informed and well travelled.
Thus your Facebook profile or any other online profile can sometimes make or break your image in the eyes of admission officers.