That loud exhalation you heard over the weekend was the sound of tens of thousands of high school students submitting their first round of college applications before early deadlines on November 1. For those of you who have confidently put your personal statements and supplements in the hands of admissions officers at your first-choice colleges, congratulations! You’ve earned a well-deserved break from essay writing and resume building, and may even want to share your status with your friends on Facebook or your followers on Twitter. But before you publish that tweet, take a step back, and think about the door you may be opening.
Engaging with College Social Media Accounts
Colleges and universities are using social media as much as their prospective students. Have you seen the Tumblr for the University of Michigan’s admission office? Or the Twitter account for Harvard? These can be great ways to follow along with your favorite schools—and to learn more about what they offer. But be cautious of over-connecting with schools, particularly small ones. While Harvard (with half a million followers) might not notice that you show up in their mentions every single day, Connecticut College (with just 8,000) surely will. And it’s not just a school behind that account, it’s a real person who might even be reading your application. Every time you comment on a school’s Facebook post or reply to one of their tweets ask yourself, “would I want this comment included as part of my application?” If not, toss it.