Thursday, October 4, 2012

Facing Your Past

One of the consistently trending topics among 18 year olds is the college admissions process. Each year, graduating seniors vie for the college they'd like to attend, usually through complex applications and essays. These documents are read by admissions counselors who then select the students that best fit the institution for which they work. However, as many students are learning, they may not be looking at your application materials only.

In a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, entitled Web Profiles Haunt Students, several admissions officers are interviewed about their use of Facebook and social media in the admissions process. Specifically detailed are the policies of Wake Forest University, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Having spent time at Wake Forest, I can tell you that it is a premier school. It has a reputation for quality students and it actively seeks to maintain that positive image. With an endowment of $1.5 billion (yes, billion, with a "b"), the school can ill afford a scandal or issue arising from poorly vetting students. While Wake may be at the forefront of this issue, they aren't the only college using this technique.

What does this mean for students? Simply, they should vet themselves and clean up their profiles. Any references to drugs or alcohol should be removed. Also, students should monitor their own behavior. This includes using appropriate language, not bullying or teasing others, and double checking old photos for something that might be misconstrued. Taking a few moments to clean up your profile could mean that you get into that school you want to go to. Isn't that worth the effort?

Frat! ~ "Dad" Seth Anthony

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