Illustration by Sarah Larson
Nowadays, Instagram, Snapchat, and Tiktok seem to be the most popular social media platforms for teens and are often downloaded to help them connect with and meet new people. However, the business and employment-focused social media platform “LinkedIn” has become increasingly popular amongst teenagers, which sparks the debate of whether or not highschoolers should have LinkedIn. Is LinkedIn solely for students to showcase their talent and achievements? Or is there more to it?
AP World teacher Amira Sani said, “LinkedIn is a good way for students to view professionals and understand how to design their own LinkedIn profile for the future. So, when they are ready to join a career, they know what it looks like.”
Sophomore Shawnak Shivakumar first created his LinkedIn profile in seventh grade. He explained, “LinkedIn has helped me get chess teaching positions—which is cool because I never thought that, as a high schooler, so many opportunities could be given to me by a simple platform.”
So why has LinkedIn become so popular amongst high school students? Sani said,
“I didn’t have a LinkedIn account myself until I went to college. Because of our generation and the fact that M-A’s location lies within Silicon Valley, many students are getting more exposed to LinkedIn and are forced to mature and look for opportunities faster.”
Junior Pierce McGuire explained why he had a LinkedIn profile: “A lot of high schoolers and friends of mine have LinkedIn. Some even use it more than regular forms of social media. A lot of people like to show off their achievements, but I simply like to see what other students are up to and use that as inspiration.”
Sophomore Ryder Ewaniuk uses the platform for professional endeavors. He said, “I downloaded LinkedIn as a way to get drumming gigs. The platform is especially helpful for students who are passionate with their extracurriculars and want to make connections.”
Despite high-schoolers being many years away from a full-time job, thousands of high school students around the world have set up their LinkedIn profile and are using the opportunities found on the platform as a way to prepare themselves for their future. Whether it is to appease college counselors, build a network, or to simply connect with other students, LinkedIn can open many opportunities.