When you are applying to college, your attention to detail has to be impeccable. You’ll be submitting transcripts and personal statements and maybe even sitting in on some interviews. But do you realize that your social media presence – clean, or not so clean -can also affect your college application experience?
Let’s take a moment to be honest with ourselves—once something is posted on social media, it’s out there for the entire world to see.
That means anyone can see what you post. Including college admissions departments.
If you’re not immediately convinced why this is important, continue reading for our top six reasons to clean up your social media pages before college.
1. Admissions teams will Google you
We all put our best selves down on paper. Writing a personal statement? I’d be willing to bet it ends on a positive note.
But the admissions team will want to know more about you than what you put down on paper. And a common way they’ll do that is by searching your social media. Oh yes, they’ll be able to see all you’ve posted on Instagram or tweeted—plus all of the comments containing foul language and other inappropriate stories.
Want to increase your odds of being accepted to your dream school? We suggest making your social media profiles hidden or (better yet) not posting anything that could put you in a negative, unprofessional light.
2. Scholarship Committees are Also Looking
After you’ve been accepted to college (or even while you’re still applying), chances are you’ll be sending in scholarship applications. Scholarship authorities will likely take the opportunity to view your social media to get a better idea of who you are.
You don’t want your shot at a scholarship to be compromised by the comments you made online or a dicey photo you posted to your feed.
3. Potential Roommates Are Feeling You Out Based on Your Profile
Most incoming college freshman classes have a community Facebook page or an admitted student’s weekend where social media profiles are swapped. It’s worth considering, “Will the people I want to room with see my profile and think I’d be a great roommate?”
If you’re hoping for a roomie who is serious about their studies, you should probably remove the 18 albums showing off your Friday night party pics. Be aware of how you’re commenting on others’ posts too.
4. Coaches Are Seeking Respectable Athletes
A clean social media presence is really important in terms of college sports recruitment. Coaches and recruiters check your online profiles first. In the tough competition of recruitment, a good online image shows you’re serious about the sport and can be a committed athlete.
Make sure your profile, posts, and comments show that you’ll contribute to positive team morale. Good sportsmanship can go a long way.
5. Part-time Employers Will Vet You
You may need a part-time job in college. After all, being able to shop the latest trends and eat good food is hard to give up—even on a shoestring budget.
So when you’re applying for work, think about potential employers viewing your profile. Do your posts indicate you work well with others? Or do they show you are consistently late to everything in your life? Even worse, do they reveal that you are regularly a no-show at your current job because you were out late the night before?
Yes, even places like grocery stores will check a prospective employee’s social media. What you post can say a lot about who you are as a worker.
6. Internship and/or Volunteering Organizations Might Take a Peek
Even though it’s only a glimpse into your life, your social media can be very telling. It’s like a mini portfolio. Therefore, it’s important to keep it presentable so that when other opportunities arise, such as internships or volunteer roles, you are seen as respectful and caring. You want your social media presence to reveal your good character and integrity.
A simple rule of thumb: Only post things you are proud of or will inspire others to be better. For more tips on cleaning up your online presence, check out the College Raptor guide to cleaning up what appears when your name is Googled!