Sunday, September 16, 2012

Students: Your Email Could Hold the Key to Your Future!

All the trends show that email usage among the younger cohorts of Internet users is declining.   
~Andrew Mason of Groupon

Photo by  by John-Morgan
As I walk around campus each day, it is clear that most students have a smart phone and are quite engaged in it.  Therefore, it is within this context that I say...

Students!  Check your email at least daily!

The Facts

According to AWeber Communications, students view email  as being for "businesses" and "grown-ups."  In fact, "students admitted to checking social networks several times a day while neglecting their email accounts for days or weeks unless they were expecting important messages from a teacher, college or employer." This is causing a struggle on most college campuses as administrators attempt to brew the secret sauce of reaching students with important messages.

The Chronicle of Higher Education posted an article on September 10th entitled "As Students Scatter Online, Colleges Try to Keep Up."  The article touched on the issues that colleges were having in reaching students because they have scattered their communication choices across various platforms - text, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Foursquare...  In other words, email has become another just another communication choice - one students are increasingly loathe to make.  

The Issue

Most would probably agree that college should be a fun learning opportunity.  In other words, it shouldn't be all drudgery.  However, the fun (games, sororities / fraternities, dating, etc...) must be balanced against the needs of the future.  This balance needs to show up in the way that you, the student, attend to your communications.  Why?

Let's take one small slice of your future - your career.  

  • Did you know that many universities have a campus recruiting program?  
  • Did you know that employers come to campus to talk about opportunities within their organizations?
  • Did you know that this is one of the easiest ways to secure an internship so you can learn valuable skills that will beef up your resume?  Some of these internships can lead to a full time job offer too.  
  • Did you know that this is the a great way to gain full time employment?
  • Did you know that many of these opportunities may be promoted to you via email?
You will know these things if you are disciplined in checking your email!

Don't force yourself into a corner by insisting that your career center find you online.  Instead, check your email diligently because that is where they will be first.  Hey, this might  give you a leg up on your competition.  You could even become the person "in the know" and help your career center get the word out.   Just don't be the student who shows up in the career counseling office the next day with an interest in XYZ company and find out that they were on campus the week before.  Don't miss the boat!


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