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Social-networking profiles affect job-searching students

Social-networking profiles affect job-searching students

By Natasha Goodell, Oklahoma Daily, U. Oklahoma

September 22, 2009

As students begin the search for entry-level jobs and internships, some are carefully considering how to keep their Facebook pages clean and professional.

“While Facebook is a social network, it has become a professional stomping ground as well,” said Abigail Solis, health and exercise science junior. “In the event a potential employer were to view my page, I wouldn’t worry about their perception of me being damaged or altered because it is quite above reproach.”

Solis said inappropriate language and suggestive, lewd or off-color photos are off limits on her Facebook page.

“If a student is looking for a job when they graduate, they need to start cleaning up their Facebook now,” said Heather Spencer, internship and career adviser for the Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication.

Spencer said students should feel free to be themselves, but at the same time, need to be careful with what they are posting online because potential employers could be looking at their page.

“The advice I gave my own daughter was to take down her Facebook page while she was job searching,” said Bette Scott, director of career services. “After she was employed, she put it back up.”

Scott said although there are privacy settings on these sites, employers can find ways around them if they know a friend of the person they are interested in hiring.

“Every year, I think more employers are using Facebook to make good decisions when hiring,” Scott said.

She said the pictures of keg parties and other things that are none of potential employer’s business should really be left off from students’ Facebook pages.

Scott said she thinks it would be fine to put interests, hobbies, educational information and professional pictures on Facebook.

“I encourage students to make sure their Facebook [pages are] very professional,” she said.

Scott said she thinks employers are still evaluating how they will use social networking or if they will use it.

“I think social networking has broadened the way we network with people,” Spencer said. “Businesses are able to reach more audiences, and audiences can interact with someone from these businesses.”

If the companies are smart enough, they will be looking for mentioning of their products on these social networking sites, and if they see any negative responses from individuals, they can respond with some positive feedback, Spencer said.

“I use Facebook for personal use and business at the same time,” Spencer said.

Spencer said she has been able to maintain many connections through Facebook, along with the social networking site LinkedIn, which is aimed at professional use.

“I think LinkedIn is a good way to connect and network on a more professional platform,” Scott said.

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    Melissa_Ellegard73

    over 1 year ago

    14 comments

    Sorry for the misspelled or unfinished words, there. I was typing too fast. :/

  • 100_0903_max50

    Melissa_Ellegard73

    over 1 year ago

    14 comments

    I don't think my facebook is bad, but who knows what might offend another person or surle, the humor content on facebook id definitely not always appropriate for the workplace. I am absolutely professional in the work place and with customer's alike, So Unless it's a friend or family member (personal) not (professional), I think potential employers should certainly keep in that in mind, it's my personal status's, not my professional attitude. hence it's a social network, not a professional meeting? Do they not take this in to consideration?

  • Superhero_logo

    Frank_Ball

    about 4 years ago

    19756 comments

    Please keep your comments on topic to the article -- Any comments posted with embedded links will be removed and the poster's account will be banned from MonsterCollege. Thank you.

  • Belushicollege

    editor

    almost 5 years ago

    396 comments

    Good feedback folks.

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    jsaxon

    almost 5 years ago

    4 comments

    I do not have anything unprofessional on my facebook page, but if I had an employer want to add me I would honestly limit the information they can see. I wouldn't let them read my statuses, see my groups, and even my pictures. They say you shouldn't bring your personal life to work, but add employers to Facebook is crossing that line. I wouldn't want my boss seeing me at that party last night, even though I don't drink. I found that I don't have to eliminate all people from these things, just because of a small group of people. I just blocked a family member from most of these things just last week. Just because you add someone to your facebook profile, doesn't mean you have to appear to be an open book.

  • Katalyst_jb_max50

    JBaines

    almost 5 years ago

    20 comments

    Facebook is an incredible litmus test with regard to your friends. There are some that live forever in the midset that screwing with you in public is their right and others develop an understanding that they might be hurting you by doing so. You can always hide posts to your wall, photos, videos, etc., but you might consider losing touch with people who can't help themselves from hurting you for their own entertainment. It may be funny, but real friends could also stand to take you out for a drink and make fun of you at the bar rather than in a place where everyone has a chance to see it.
    Of course, the friends who understand pretty quickly are probably the ones who you'll end up networking with in the long term anyway. I mean, would you rather work with the friend who can interact with you professionally, or the one that reminds you of your collegiate 'extra-curriculars' whenever it is least convenient?

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    Franklin2009

    almost 5 years ago

    24 comments

    I had buddies that kept saying we met making out in college. I told them to stop it because I use facebook professionally too. But now on MonsterCollege people dont joke around as much because we are all here for the same thing, to learn about getting a job.

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    basmah87

    almost 5 years ago

    8 comments

    I don't have anything that bad on facebook. The worst thing is when people write on my wall and swear (and that's once in a while), or else I have joined a group that has a swear word on it. I wonder if it helps if I have a limited profile, or should I just deactivate the account when I am looking for an internship and/or job?

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    Unaccredited Cate

    almost 5 years ago

    Although I have a Facebook, I realize that most people I know and regularly interact with know what I did last night, how I feel and who I spend a majority of my time with. I don't ever really feel the need to post anything improper or unneccessary, incriminating or not. It's just a sign of the times we're living in: a time where the need to be constantly wired leads to constant lapses in judgement.

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    Jonny_Utah

    almost 5 years ago

    232 comments

    Good point Rpaglia- people don't seem to realize how permanent the internet can be.

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    RPaglia

    almost 5 years ago

    2 comments

    Great information, I remember a special done on one of the big networks about job seekers and facebook/myspace.

    I have nothing to worry about cause I wouldnt place subjectional material on the internet. It's foolish to think you can place things on the internet today and no-one will SEE it. I have found many old postings I did on the internet yrs ago yet nothing to worry about.