The student news site of Frank W. Cox High School

Social media acceptances, denials

June 12, 2017

“There are a lot of pros and cons about social media; it’s just how you choose to handle it and how you have to be prepared for the negatives as well.” – Aubrey Peeples

Over and over again, teens are told to be careful. The one warning that seems to rise above the rest is that of social media, the massive group of apps who’s influence reach worldwide. 

Growing up in the age of technology gives these teens the advantage of knowing the cause and effect of posting on those pinkie-sized boxes on phone screens, that and having parents whose every other sentence was, “ You know you can never really delete that right?”. Through trial and error, these teens have discovered that you never know who’s looking, so the best thing to do is to keep that in mind when posting.

As this technological generation becomes older and starts applying for jobs and or higher education, those in charge must decide whether or not to use social media in the decision making process; to accept or not to accept. According to a Kaplan Test Prep survey, 35 percent of admissions officers and businesses have already taken to social media to screen applicants.  

However, that 35% of social media checking admissions officers and businesses is on the decrease since last year. While it seems like that’s better for prospective students and employees, almost half of those that use social media to screen applicants say that by doing so they get a better view of the prospective student or employee.

The University of Wisconsin – Green Bay has taken this to a different level, using Snapchat to let students know their admission decision. According to the local TV station WBAY, hopeful students receive a photo on the app with their admission decision weeks before the actual letter comes in the mail.

The only downside to this seemingly “hip” acceptance is that if the University of Wisconsin – Green Bay can send a picture through Snapchat, they are also able to see everything an applicant posts. This reinforces the idea that students applying to college should think about cleaning up their social media before they hit submit on their applications.

For example, one admission officer on The Kaplan Survey found out that a student who was already accepted to college had a felony charge that they did not disclose on the original application, which caused the school to rescind the student’s acceptance. Another admissions officer stumbled across a prospective student who had pictures of themselves with weapons, giving the admissions officer pause in their initial decision. If these students had cleaned up their social media pages, or had been honest about past felonies, their admission decisions most likely would not have been affected by their social media posts.

On the other hand, college admissions gaining access to students social media could work in a student’s favor. According to some admissions officers from the same Kaplan Test Prep survey, what they found on prospective students social media pages actually had a positive impact on their decisions. In fact, many admissions officers involved in the survey discovered that students would post pictures from awards or clubs that they hadn’t mentioned in their application.

Applying to college is a stressful time for every student, their social media shouldn’t be a brick added to the barriers they already have to cross in the admission process. Nevertheless, it seems admission officers have already taken to checking social media, so it’s up to the applicants themselves to keep that in mind during the application process.

Aside from the college view on social media, it can’t hurt to keep personal social medias clean. Whether it comes to potential employers, family members, or admission counselors it’s impossible to predict who will look at your page.

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