Momservation: A questionable digital footprint will walk you right out the door of opportunity.
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Today I volunteered at my son’s high school to assist counselors by interviewing sophomores. The goal was to make sure the students are on track to graduate as well making them aware of how to keep their options open for life after high school.
We did this by:
- Encouraging them to make an appointment to see their counselor for a four-year plan if they hadn’t already done so.
- Encouraging them to take the SAT or ACT for college entrance as a junior no matter what their plans—to keep their options open.
- Making them aware of resources to help guide them in plans for life after high school (i.e. Naviance.com, http://www.collegepossible.org/, district Regional Occupational Program)
- Giving them information and materials to aid in their future success.
Whether the students had no idea where they were headed in life (which, contrast to current societal pressures, is okay for a 15 year-old), or whether they had life after high school well mapped out (and could’ve been college admissions counselors) the take-away message was the same:
Keep your options open.
- If you make a plan—it keeps your options open because you won’t run out of time to complete graduation/college requirements.
- If you take college entrance exams like the SAT or ACT—it keeps your options open if you change your mind about community college, military, or trade school or find the resources for higher education.
- Using free resources to educate yourself on what’s out there, what interests you, and what’s a good fit—keeps your options open to future success and happiness.
- Information is power. When you seek out information—it keeps your options open by putting the power in your hands to steer your destiny.
As VICCI (Volunteers In Career and College) members we had a big binder of resources to guide and educate the students we met with. It is such a valuable collection of information that we had to practically sign away our first born child to have it temporarily in our possession.
And for all the valuable knowledge we gained studying that binder…and all the information and guidance we provided the students we met with to keep their options open…
Something so very, very important was left out of what we were supposed to communicate to the kids today.
Something that slams the door shut to keeping your options open.
No matter the hard work.
No matter the planning.
No matter the information and resources you utilize.
Something that should be the first page of the prized VICCI binder:
What does your digital footprint look like?
Today’s teenagers may live by the sword of social media, but unless they’re absolutely careful and diligent, they will die by that sword.
What you post today on social media could haunt you tomorrow.
The first thing a college will do, a job interviewer will do, the military will do, or someone considering you for their program will do:
- Google you
- Check your Facebook
- Check your Instagram
- Check your Twitter
- Check your SnapChat
- Check your Tumblr
- Check your YouTube channel
- Check your Vine
…do I need to keep going?
Nothing slams the door shut on keeping your opportunities open than being an idiot on social media. A questionable digital footprint will walk you right out the door of opportunity.