The University of Texas is advising students to be aware of what they’re posting online after incoming freshmen at Harvard had their admissions revoked because of “offensive” posts they made online.
Among the dozens of incoming UT freshmen standing in line for an official student ID at the Flawn Academic Center, Skylar Steele stands patiently with her parents. Steele said part of her practice to maintain her goals is making sure what’s on her social media account is something she wouldn’t be afraid to show her future employer.
“If your grandma friends you on Facebook and all your parent’s friends (too), do you really want them to see that of you?” said Steele.
The Harvard Crimson reported some incoming freshmen shared sexually explicit messages on a private Facebook chat. The student paper reports some of the messages were about child abuse and the Holocaust.
“We don’t review social media accounts,” said Gary Lavergne of the admissions office at UT.
Lavergne said in his 17 years with admissions, the only time he’s seen a revoked offer at UT was because of a fraudulent application. He said usually it occurs among international applicants. With over 50,000 freshmen who applied to UT, Lavergne said looking through the Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter of each prospective student would be too time-consuming.
“It’s not a practical thing to do for the number of applicants we receive,” he said.
Manager of communications at UT, Sara Kennedy, said as students are coming into the next stage of their life the University wants students to think that posts on social media hold the same consequences as saying it in everyday life.
“We wanted our students to start thinking about their success not just during college but after they graduate. Is that something they want a future employer to see? Is that how they want to represent themselves? Is that what it means to be a Longhorn?”