What does your facebook or twitter page say about you? Your online reputation matters when you’re applying for colleges and internship programs. If your page does not reflect anything good about your personality, it’s time to clean it up. Even if your social media connections are strictly limited to your family and friends, there is no telling whether some of your online activities are being used for the screening process.
Are You a Good Fit?
Because every single page online can be accessed by anyone with an internet connection, colleges and potential intern companies have the ability to review their applicants’ credentials online and search for clues that the person is not a good fit for their institution. Even simple comments on blogs can be found.
Colleges and companies that accept interns will always go for the “ideal” type of student or intern, preferably someone that embodies the kind of image the institution wants to project. They want well-rounded individuals that can get along with others. They want driven and devoted students that roll with the punches and are able to commit to a responsibility. They don’t want gossipmongers, negative-minded individuals that post provocative and inflammatory comments on online pages.
Online Feuds Could Put You In a Bad Light
Your online persona is telling of what you are as a person and what you are capable of doing. Some of you may be thinking, “right, as if colleges and companies are THAT picky”, but they have to be picky. As a part of the company or educational system, the student carries the name and reputation of the institution.
For instance, when a student shows the tendency to ridicule and lambast anything and everything based on the comments and posts he makes on Facebook and Twitter, the company may fear that the student will drag them in a big-scale controversy later on. This fear is justified because there are individuals that threaten violence on others in major social network pages. News reports on television now include twitter wars and internet hype, which have turned out to be media nightmares for the companies and colleges involved.
Basically, companies and colleges just want someone who wouldn’t create trouble in the workplace, in the dorms and in the classroom environment. While there’s no such thing as a perfect student and every person has idiosyncrasies and quirks, several systems are set up so that potential liabilities don’t slip through the cracks.
Grades Are Not the End-All of Being Accepted
You should know that it isn’t all about grades. This is particularly true for companies looking for interns to train. Grades are, of course, the main basis for acceptance, but because most applicants wouldn’t apply if their grades don’t meet the academic restrictions, there has to be some other criterion for choosing successful applicants when slots are limited. Simply put, every applicant has good grades and academic credentials, but the company can only accept a certain number of interns so they choose those that wouldn’t cause trouble.
Is your LinkedIn profile something you can share with everyone, including the applications officer in your chosen college? The connections you make in LinkedIn, for instance, could be indications of the type of company you keep. There are all sorts of organizations to connect with in that social network, but you have to choose to connect with organizations and groups that would put you in a good light.
In conclusion, the social networks can be helpful when building a public brand for yourself. But if used as an avenue for your angst and dissatisfaction about life in general, you could be endangering your college or internship application.
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