social media in the college admissions process

On last week’s episode of Getting In: A College Conversation, host Beth Heaton and her guests addressed a story from Harvard University that has been all over the news lately and its broader implications for the college admissions process, helped families prepare financially for studying abroad, and took a behind the scenes look at the Tufts University admissions office.

In the first segment, College Coach colleagues and former Tufts University admissions officers, Becky Leichtling and Kerrin Lyons, joined Beth to highlight their experiences reviewing Tufts applicants. If you have listened to previous episodes in this “Inside the Admissions Office” series, you should know by now that the review process varies by institutional policies and preferences (if you haven’t listened to other episodes in this series, find them in the archives!). So what does “data and voice” mean at Tufts, and why do they read the supplemental essays first? If you are debating between applying EDI, EDII, or Regular Decision at Tufts, you need to tune into this segment to get the insider’s perspective on how your applications might look differently depending on the round in which you apply.

Next, finance expert Kathy Ruby offered financial advice to families with students planning on studying abroad during their college career. It’s important not to get too excited for something you can’t afford, so Kathy urged families to begin the planning process at least a year in advance. She explained that the type of program, length, and sponsoring institution can all impact the associated costs. Listen to the full segment to think through important questions like: What’s included in the fees? Will the credits transfer back? What happens to the financial aid I already receive from my institution? And how do you make a budget for your time abroad?

Finally, former Barnard admissions officer Kara Courtois joined Beth for an “Office Hours” segment on social media in the college admissions process. Following the recent news of Harvard University rescinding offers to ten accepted students due to inappropriate social media activity, Kara and Beth helped unpack this unfortunate situation, hoping to thwart future students from making the same mistakes. They stressed that every student needs to remember that no admissions offer is unconditional, writing is permanent, and nothing is “private” if you are posting it online. But are admissions officers checking the social media profiles of every applicant? What are some general guidelines to follow regarding your online profile?

On next week’s episode of Getting In, Beth returns to discuss saving for college—specifically, choosing a 529 plan—and the undergraduate role in graduate school admission. How important is your undergraduate school choice to your chances of getting into medical school and what should you be doing now if you are planning on getting an MBA?  Tune in to find out!


Written by Lauren Randle
Lauren Randle is a member of College Coach’s team of college admissions consultants. Prior to joining College Coach, Lauren worked as a senior admissions officer at Georgetown University and previously held positions in college counseling at Malvern Preparatory School and the Canadian International School of Hong Kong. Visit our website to learn more about Lauren Randle.