Social Media & Your Future
Begin By Building a Professional Online Brand
- Use Google, or another search engine, to search all versions of your name (full name and nicknames) and see what information is readily available about you on the Internet.
- If you find something on other websites that might damage your online reputation, take action to try to have it removed.
- Use the privacy settings on your Facebook account to ensure that personal information, posts, and photos you do not want shared with employers are not
viewable on your public profile.
- Clean up your social media profile(s). The safest way to ensure that compromising information doesn’t wind up in the hands of employers is to regularly review your profile and delete posts or photos that are inappropriate.
- Always use sound judgment and think of the long term ramifications when sharing information online.
Career Services' Office Guidelines & Policies for Social Media: The Office of Career Services maintains a presence on several social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, WordPress, etc.) to engage our various constituents including undergraduate and graduate students, employers, alumni, parents, faculty and staff, as well as graduate and professional school representatives. Please review our office guidelines and policies regarding social media engagement and connections with students.
Follow our Pinterest Board for Infographics relating to Social Media: Check out the Career Services' Pinterest board entitled, "Social Media & YOU" for infographics with advice for students on how to develop an online brand, how to use social media to land a job or internship, and more. One of the infographics entitled, "The Google Yourself Challenge" offers advice on how to stay up to date on the types of online information available about you.
Use Social Media When Searching for a Job or Internship
Social media sites such as LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook are potential resources for networking with alumni and prospective employers. Follow the tips below to build a professional online image and use social media platforms effectively when looking for a job or internship.
LinkedIn is a great resource for college students and alumni to build their professional networks, stay abreast of trends in their industry, and research potential employers and opportunities.
To learn more about how to get started, check out this series of six, 5-minute LinkedIn training videos exclusively for student users of LinkedIn. LinkedIn also provides the following worksheets for students on how to build a professional profile, networking etiquette, and researching employer contacts.
Follow these steps to create a professional presence on LinkedIn:
- Choose a professional “headshot” photo and build your professional profile 100 percent by including all of the experience on your resume.
- When reaching out to establish connections, be sure to personalize each one with a message about who you are, why you would like to connect, and whether you have a common connection or affiliation. Do not rely solely on the automated text, "I'd like to add you to my network" in your request to connect.
- Join alumni groups and professional association groups affiliated with your field of interest on LinkedIn. Most major employers have a LinkedIn page as a way to connect with potential candidates and communicate their brand. Follow companies you are interested in applying to and you can stay abreast of news, announcements, and opportunities.
- Update your profile with posts related to your field and your work, so employers and others in your network can see how serious you are about your career.
- Search for alumni who work at organizations you are interested in applying to and reach out to see if they would be willing to provide you with some advice and share their insights about the industry.
- Review this job search checklist developed by LinkedIn to make sure you are leveraging all of LinkedIn's features and maximize your success.
Additional Resources on How to Use LinkedIn Effectively:
Follow these steps to create a professional presence on Twitter:
- Create a Twitter handle using your name or combination of your name and profession--keep it professional.
- Upload a headshot photo that projects a professional image to potential employers and others in your field.
- Take time to create a professional profile that includes your "value proposition" or the top skills you can offer and briefly describe the type of opportunity you are looking for. Potentially add links to your website and/or LinkedIn profile.
- Tweet links to interesting articles about your field or profession, samples of your work, or other information that reflects your knowledge and interest in the field.
- Start to follow leaders in your industry and continue to build your network by using Twitter Search and Twitter’s Find People tool.
- Follow organizations and lists and look for interesting Tweetchats or Tweetups to join.
- Retweet, reply and direct message to establish connections.
- Search and follow hashtags relevant to your industry to stay current.
Additional Resources for Twitter:
- Professionalize your profile. Include a professional picture and build a professional profile that includes your education and job history.
- Your profile should demonstrate your accomplishments, strengths, and the skills you can offer future employers. Remember that anything you include in your profile may be visible to future employers so keep your content professional and make sure that your privacy settings reflect the content you wish to share.
- Build your network by "liking" Facebook professional and alumni organizational pages or request to join group pages to start building your professional network. Many professional pages advertise conferences and networking opportunities on Facebook.
- If you’re interested in working for a specific company or organization, “like” their organizational page to learn about career opportunities and company news.Start discussions with people and organizations to which you subscribe by answering questions, commenting, making introductions, and linking to informative content through wall posts or status updates.
- Apply for positions. Use the Facebook Marketplace job board and a variety of Facebook job-search apps to search and apply for positions.
Additional Resources for Facebook: