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Social Media and College Admissions: Use It To Your Advantage

Teenagers tend to post on social media to impress their friends. But why not use social media to impress the admissions office? Alan Katzman, founder of Social Assurity, offers a new perspective on social media and college admissions.


This presentation was part of Your Teen Magazine‘s College Event Cleveland in January 2015. To see all the presentations from the College Event Cleveland, click here.

New Uses of Social Media


In the next fifteen or twenty minutes, I’m going to change the way you view social media. All right, so let’s go. There’s our social media person. So when I started doing this and talking about social media to high school students, the general perception of this issue was “Social media can only stop me from getting into college, can only stop me from getting a scholarship.” But it’s really not that way.

So let’s understand what I call the first audience, what most teens right now have on social media. You’re posting things that your friends are going to like, right? You put stuff on Instagram, you want a hundred likes, right? Who will take something down on Instagram if they get less than a certain number of likes? Come on, you can raise your hand. No one? I usually get everybody to raise their hand in this. I got one!

So typically what you’re doing is that you’re engaging with your friends, and that’s okay. You’re putting things out, either a joke or an experience, and you want people to see it. And that’s building a record, because on this screen you’ll see that everything you put down has two things in common. It’s permanent, and it’s discoverable. And we’ll get in a little bit later on why it’s discoverable, even if you’re anonymous, even if you’re under a different name, but it is discoverable. But these aspects could work to your advantage.

So let’s take a look at what’s happening. These are the eleven, twelve hardest schools to get into in the country, all right? Now don’t freak out about this, but the gold bars are the number of students who are rejected last omission cycle, and the blue at the bottom is the number of students who were accepted.

(For the rest of this presentation, please view our attached video)

Alan Katzman founded Social Assurity in 2013 to help students harness social media to curate digital portraits that reflect their true character and potential.

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