Advice from admissions officers

Tips for Responsible Social Media Use

Posted by Emil Chuck, Ph.D. on September 25, 2018

Social media is often viewed as a blessing and a curse. Thoughts, photos and videos are shared instantly and widely— friends, family and complete strangers receive posts within seconds. In recent news, we’ve discovered lingering or residual effects in which past posts—typically those posted in haste—negatively impact young people seeking employment or educational opportunities. Have college applicants lost offers of admission or scholarship money due to social media posts they made when they were much younger? Unofficially, some applicants say “yes.”

Experts in social media know that your profile is your “brand,” and, therefore, it must be managed. People can learn a great deal of information about you through social media based on patterns of what you say, what you like and what articles and videos you enjoy.

Given the fluidity of social media, refreshers on how best to separate our personal and private information benefit each of us. Here are a few tips and reminders to manage your social profile online responsibly and well.

  1. Own your image, personal information and how these are used. Pay close attention to the Terms of Use on apps and websites. Most people skim through them to accept immediately, but it’s wise to take a closer look and read all the sections thoroughly. In some situations, you can opt out of automatic facial recognition tags.
  2. Obtain permissions when posting videos or images of others on your networks. Never take photos of patients during procedures without permission.
  3. Scrub your accounts. Posting to social media leaves an imprint. Delete anything that’s irrelevant, embarrassing or disrespectful. That includes inactive accounts. If you don’t want the entire world to see you in a compromising position, delete it. Reflect seriously on what you post before you post it; if you wouldn’t want to see it on the front page of the newspaper, or you wouldn’t want your family to see it, do not post it. 
  4. Password diligence. Update passwords frequently. Keep an eye on any dormant accounts if you decide not to delete them. Inactive accounts are prone to hackers.
  5. Spread love, not hate. Share uplifting or positive posts in support of causes, subjects and persons you care about. 

personal brand (sept 2018)

About Emil Chuck, Ph.D.:

Emil Chuck New

Emil Chuck, Ph.D.
Director of Admissions
Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine

Dr. Chuck earned his Ph.D. in Cell Biology from Case Western Reserve University after his BSE in biomedical engineering from Duke. Formerly the Chief Health Professions Advisor and Assistant Professor at George Mason University, he has served as advisor to the AAAS Science Careers Forum and often sits as a workshop panelist on interviewing skills and competency-based evaluations.