Is spending too much time on social media preventing your student from getting a job or an internship? The answer may be – "It depends."
Social networking has been criticized as a complete waste of time. However, it's only unproductive if your student spends too much time on the "social" aspects of the networking. When used on more professional terms, social networking sites can be a huge benefit in terms of increasing a student’s opportunity to land a job or an internship.
Is your student preparing for an interview that's looking for a skill he/she doesn't have but could easily acquire? Encourage a YouTube search of "How-To" videos on the subject.
Is your student interested in learning more about an organization from one of its current employees? Encourage your student to set up a LinkedIn profile to find out who works there. LinkedIn is a great way to make connections in a professional community through reaching out personally, as well as by posting a viewable resume for potential employers.
If a student is not yet comfortable sending a message on LinkedIn, encourage a more informal social network like Twitter. Suggest your student follow leaders in fields of interest to find out what is trending – to determine desirable professional characteristics in the career path they have found interesting.
And lastly, Facebook. This social network allows students the opportunity to connect personally, as well as remain up-to-date on current events in their field of interest via messaging and accessibility to worldwide news, politics, and social platforms.
You might think about it this way:
Yellow Pages/Phonebook Facebook
Training Seminar YouTube
New York Times Twitter
As a parent, accepting that technology has changed how information is accessed and the ways in which people connect to one another is important. Talk to your student about how they are building their communities on campus, and through technology as developing professionals. Encourage your student to make the most of the tools available!
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