By Stephanie Miceli
Once upon a time, when students received the big envelope from their dream college, they called their friends. Now, students rely on social networks to break the news. All of a sudden, your feeds are flooding with acceptance posts. Not only does social media make it faster to share good news, it makes it easier to act in ways you wouldn’t in “real-life.”
While it’s natural to want to join in on exciting college acceptance conversations, it’s important to put yourself in the shoes of a student who is still waiting for decision letters, or perhaps turned down from his top school. Here are some tips in how you can celebrate- with others’ feelings in mind:
The Do’s of Posting Your College Acceptance on Facebook
Do join Facebook groups for admitted students.
This is an appropriate place to share your excitement without the risk of causing jealousy- and a great way to connect with current students and learn if the school really is for you.
Do consider holding off on posting which college you’re going to until you have officially confirmed you are going.
Several things could happen between getting your acceptance packet and May 1- your financial situation could change, or if the college could rescind its offer if your grades drop. Such scenarios are embarrassing to explain- much like going from “In a Relationship” to “Single.”
Do show your support for fellow classmates if they choose to announce their acceptances.
The positivity will come back to you when you have your turn in the spotlight!
Do feel free to share your acceptance news in a more general sense.
For example, it’s totally cool to post, “I got my first acceptance letter!”), rather than, “I got accepted to (x) college!” until you’ve settled all final details.
Do consider starting a mini- social media detox if the acceptance posts are just making you more stressed.
Besides, you’ve put so much time into your applications, and should reward yourself with some “you” time!
The Don’ts of Posting Your College Acceptance on Facebook
Don’t let the application process strain your friendships (on Facebook and in real life).
Some schools offer a great amount of transparency into the college application process-allowing students to view each other’s grades and class rankings, and listing where its students are attending college. This sometimes brings touchy situations- what if a friend gets accepted to a school that you are rejected to (or vice versa)? What if a friend refers to your “safety school” as her reach school? The best way to handle this is to have one-on-one conversations with your friends before taking to social media; and emphasize your genuine interest in the colleges in those conversations.
Don’t put down the school that accepted you.
Saying something like, “Got accepted to (x college), no surprise because getting in is a joke” is boastful and is also risky. Colleges usually have communications staff monitor social networks for what people are saying, and if someone catches that post, the joke’s now on you.
Don’t blindly friend people who go to that college.
You don’t want to gain a reputation as the over-eager freshman before you even set foot on campus. However, if a current student posts in an accepted student group and clearly welcomes friend requests, that’s fine-just be sure to send them an introductory message, too.
Don’t leave negative comments.
It’s natural to be jealous of others who got the acceptance you wanted-but that’s journal material, not Facebook status material. Recently, after not making the Who’s Who list, a fellow senior posted on Facebook, “sorry I was doing real work and not singing show tunes every day.” This displayed poor sportsmanship, and caused others to wonder why she had nominated herself for the award in the first place.
Don’t let the excitement fuel your disappointment.
It’s not worthwhile to compare yourself to other applicants. Instead, focus on yourself and what you can do to stand out to colleges.