2 huge ways Facebook helps college-bound


Facebook Photo by Public Domain image by Skander, Facebook | Flickr – Photo Sharing!www.flickr.com

Parents, there is an upside to your college-bound kids using Facebook, Twitter and  microblogs. A recent study shows it’s good practice for making spontaneous and memorable remarks. This skill will come in handy when students are called on to write college essays.

It’s nice to know that a recreational activity can help prepare students for a specific part of college prep.

Turns out it’s the easy, breezy style of natural human speech that makes the difference in helping people remember. For college-bound teens, the audience that counts is college admission test graders and college admission officers. This is a group ready to find a piece that stands out from the crowd.

Using a casual voice honed from microblogging’s spontaneity, students may be able to write a memorable college essay.

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7 cool ways Twitter helps parents of college-bound

twitter influence: Photo by mil8 Marc Levin www.flickr.com

twitter influence: Photo by mil8 Marc Levin www.flickr.com

Social media can help parents of the college-bound. Twitter, for instance, provides a wide selection of valuable resources. While students are often warned about how misuse of social media can harm their college and job prospects, savvy parents can explore and benefit from this new virtual frontier.

With short and snappy posts, Twitter users get their point across in 140 characters or less. It’s a great tool for uber-busy parents with little spare time. Tweets can be read on smart phones while standing in line at the market, in a waiting room or during T.V. commercials. Since Twitter is socially interactive, parents can follow a favorite Tweeter, comment and ask a question.

Here are 7 cool ways Twitter helps parents of the college-bound:

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FAFSA help on Twitter

Cliché: Inside information.
POCS Reality: FAFSA help was available on a Department of Education twitter chat.

Financial aid met social media yesterday as applicants entered their tweet questions in 140 characters or less using #AskFAFSA.

Martha Kanter, the Under Secretary of Education, hosted an hour-long twitter chat about the FAFSA (the Free Application for Federal Student Aid) and tweeted the answers.

Here are some of her tweet highlights:

  • There’s NO income cut-off for federal student aid. Everyone should fill out the FAFSA.
  • You can submit a FAFSA before you file your taxes. Select “will file” then use income estimates & correct your FAFSA later.
  • To access your SAR (Student Aid Report) after submitting your FAFSA, login, click View Processed Information & enter your PIN. More details.
  • For information about your state’s financial aid program, check your state’s website
  • In order to receive federal student aid you must be a US citizen or eligible noncitizen. But you should check with your school’s #financialaid office. They can help you explore your options. But you should check with your school’s #financialaid office. They can help you explore your options.
  • If the student answers no to all questions here she’s a dependent student & must provide parent info.
  • Students should file FAFSA every year they want aid because you never know how your circumstances might change or what new financial aid might become available.
  • Federal Pell Grant eligibility is based on many things: income, cost of attendance @ your school & more.
  • The FAFSA is available in Spanish.
  • Grandparents are not considered parents on the FAFSA unless they have legally adopted you.
  • The IRS data retrieval will be available Feb. 1. Change “will file” to “already completed” in your FAFSA.
  • Your answer to the marital status question should reflect your marital status at the time you sign the FAFSA.
  • Federal student aid can be used to cover summer tuition if you have remaining eligibility for the academic year.
  • If you have questions along the way, the FAFSA’s Help section has a lot of great info.

The twitter chat also gave Under Sec. of Ed. Kanter ideas for future consideration such as creating a FAFSA video tutorial in Spanish and adding a FAQ section for the IRS Data Retireval tool.

It also provided an opportunity to give info about the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program.

Read more:

When should students file FAFSA? File FAFSA ASAP

Why students should file FAFSA? 15 FAFSA FACTS

POCSmom’s College Prep DIY Insight: Who said social media is impersonal? What a wonderful opportunity to get info directly from Under Sec. of Ed. Kanter. Too bad not all questions were answered but  lucky tweeps got their FAFSA help on Twitter.

5 Ways Colleges/Students Use Twitter

Cliché: Sign up for Twitter.    
POCS Reality:  Colleges and students use Twitter.


 How do you get info, make connections, and stay current in 140 characters or less? You get on Twitter and easily read brief bits of time-dated posts. The social media site has also become invaluable for colleges and college students for a variety of uses.

Here are 5 ways colleges and college students use Twitter:

1. Emergency Alerts Using Twitter, colleges and students can send real-time updates. For example, The Virginia Tech University newspaper The Collegiate Times got out the word and photos concerning the December 8th campus shootings through it’s Twitter feed when staff were evacuated from the newspaper office, according to The New York Times article: Using Twitter Virginia Tech’s College Newspaper Kept On Publishing.

2. College recruitment Communicating with college staff via Twitter and following Twitter tweets for college updates and photos can help create connections during the admission process.

3. Paying for college Twitter college tweet/essay scholarships can help pay for college. You can start a tweet scholarship search by using keywords: “Twitter and scholarships.”

4. Professor-student contact Through tweets in or out of the classroom, profs and students can share info, videos, and notes. Check this Infographic for surprising results of higher classroom engagement and grades for college students using Twitter to get answers to their questions.

5. Internship/Job search There are several ways and sites to find an internship/job on Twitter including through a Twitter job search engine, Twitter job sites, and creating your own Twitter account to network.

POCSmom’s College Prep DIY Insight: Twitter is a powerful social media tool. College students should use it wisely and self-edit. A good update of the carpenter saying “Measure twice, cut once” for Twitter users can be “Read twice, post once” before tweeting.