Social media has become an outlet heavily used by both high school and college students everywhere. We use it to share memories with our friends, create posts, and upload photos, – but do we really think about the consequences of our actions on our social media accounts? Sure, social media is great for networking with peers, sharing status updates about our daily lives and exciting nights, but what happens when the content we post jeopardizes our opportunities of landing a job?
Students are not the only ones who use social media, although we sometimes forget this. Large and small companies, as well as other institutions, use social networking not only to keep in contact with their current employees, but to learn about potential employees, as well. Students in college who use social media for their own personal use, as well as entertainment, may be under scrutiny by future employers and college campuses.
Today, students use social media for their personal agendas. Social media sites such as Facebook and Instagram make it easy for students to share photos and status updates, as well as connect with other social media outlets. The connectivity of all these sites makes it easier for students’ information to be readily available for anyone to see.
When applying for a job, employers look for someone who will represent their company in the best way possible. The employee whom they choose must fit a certain standard they would like to uphold. The simple misuse of a social media outlet, such as the use of vulgar language or posting images of a night out getting drunk, may cost a hopeful applicant the opportunity to get the job. Of course, there are other factors that play a role in getting a job, such as extra- curricular activities, volunteer work, recommendations, and prior work experiences.
“I made a new Facebook account when I came here to America, but I only have 10 friends,” said Zoey Zhu, a Business Administration graduate student. “If I apply for a job here in America, I would like to keep my account very clean. I know that jobs look at your accounts for poor behavior.”
Questionable imagery or behavior on a social media account may be something that an applicant must explain to whomever it is they are hoping will choose them for a career or scholarly opportunity.
“I do not upload lots of pictures of myself on Facebook, and I choose not to have certain social media accounts,” said Tatsuto Shibata, a sophomore Business major. “When I begin to apply to jobs, I would not like to have to answer about a bad or drunken photo taken of me years ago.”
For prospective college students, and college students expecting to graduate, it is important that they evaluate the content they upload to their social media accounts. To post photos of friends and events are great, but the images that are posted play a very important role in what employers think about potential employees and their chances of being hired.
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