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Keeping Your Socials Clean as a College Student

It’s important to keep a clean social media presence, especially throughout your high school and college years. When applying for internships and jobs in the future, it’s a good idea to leave professional-looking profiles on social media platforms for when employers inevitably Google you to view your past. Here are some things to think about when cleaning up your socials! 


Have a presentable profile picture 

Your profile pictures on each social media platform is a first impression to anyone who searches for you and visits your profile, especially employers. In college especially, you don’t want a profile picture of you and your friend with bottles of champagne on New Year’s Eve (especially if you’re underage!). Stick with something simple, like your high school graduation picture, a sorority composite, or a picture of you and your best friends. Stray away from party or going out pics and anything that can look like something it’s not. 


Keep the alcohol out   

This should go without saying, but don’t post pictures that display alcohol or anything that can be misconstrued as being such. Before you post pictures on the gram or Facebook, do a thorough sweep of each photo. Look at the subject(s) of the picture, the background, everything – are people holding drinks? Are you? Is it obvious if you are in a party or bar setting? Don’t place a sticker or emoji over drinks either – it’s not cute and is obvious you’re hiding something. If all else fails, if you’re doubting whether or not to post it, just don’t. Plus, any pictures with alcohol early on in college makes it clear you’ve partaken in underage drinking. 


Don’t post or share anything offensive 

Whether it be Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or another social platform, don’t share anything that could offend someone. It can be taken as offensive and as if you agree or disagree with something, even if your true thoughts are the opposite. Play it safe and just don’t share it. Save it or bookmark it for later if it’s something you know you’ll want to be able to go back to or reference later. 


Keep your comments to a minimum 

As the saying goes, “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” By this I don’t mean you can’t comment on your aunt’s picture of her baby or her dog and how cute you think s/he is. Of course do that! But if there are political or religious posts or controversial articles that you feel the need to comment on, keep it clean. It’s okay to voice your opinion politely and factually but definitely not okay to contribute to any controversy or hate online. 


Represent your personal brand well 

It’s always a good idea to be professional on social media. Obviously if you’re in college, you’re going to want to share all the fun and exciting moments – which is totally fine! Aside from keeping posts and photos clean, keep it all that way. You want future employers to be able to look at your profile and be able to identify the kind of person you are – which is a fabulous, intelligent, fun girlboss, not a crazy college partier. Be yourself, of course, but represent yourself well and display everything you can that will help you in the future, but absolutely not hinder it. 


Leave the past in the past 

We’re in college now, so let’s try to keep the drama to a minimum amiright ladies? Delete any status updates about the beef you had with your bestie junior year of high school and absolutely anything that can tie you to negative situations from the past. Another quick tip to always keep in mind: don’t badmouth online! Cyberbullying, ratting out bad friends or taking out feelings about your past bosses or workplaces can come back to haunt you when employers look into your socials. Stay respectful and don’t give them a reason to question your integrity! 


Keeping your social media presence real, clean and professional is a smart move to ensure that you secure your future dream jobs with no questions asked! 


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Hi there! I'm Kendall and I'm a sophomore in advertising at the University of Illinois. Aside from staying busy writing at my internship and running around campus, you can find me adding to my monthly Spotify playlists, listening to true crime podcasts, running at the arc, or having cozy movie nights with friends!
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