Eric Wagner ’06
@SNCadmissions joins the conversation in the Age of Twitter
Eric Wagner ’06 (Admissions) comes to work with the goal of connecting with students who will fit in well at St. Norbert. One of the newer tools available to him is Twitter, the social network that revolves around users’ updates about their lives, in 140 characters or less.
“A lot of people think that Twitter is just for telling other people useless stuff,” says Wagner. “ ‘I went to lunch today,’ ‘I went to work.’ ” But combine those posts, or “Tweets,” with Twitter’s search engine and you can enter the conversation, he explains. “You’re able to input ‘St. Norbert,’ ‘Green Knights,’ ‘SNC’ and those keywords … you can go back and see every time those keywords were ever Tweeted.”
St. Norbert set up more than 15 Twitter accounts for campus offices, including Admissions, around a year and a half ago. Since that time, Wagner has used Twitter to answer people’s questions, meet potential students and be a part of their conversations.
One of the posts about St. Norbert that Wagner noticed was from a high school student, Rory Ferreira. Wagner followed Ferreira and responded to a few of his Tweets. Ferreira was impressed.
“I follow Eric Wagner and he’ll Tweet about going golfing and it’s like, ‘OK, you really use this – you didn’t just sign up for it to follow potential students.’ ” Ferreira said. “And I think that’s cool. Certainly made me respect St. Norbert and Eric Wagner because it wasn’t just for show.”
Ferreira applied and also talked his friend – Andrew Frazee, a freshman at DePaul University looking to transfer – into checking out St. Norbert. The two visited campus in late May and will be entering the college this fall. Ferreira said that there was none of the usual awkwardness during the campus visit, because of the familiarity built on Twitter.
“What isn’t really in [a standard] application is who I am as a person,” Ferreira said. “... From an admissions standpoint, it’s a much more three-dimensional approach to actually figuring out who the kids are who apply.”
As Twitter’s popularity grows among teenagers and twenty-somethings, Ferreira is part of a trend that Wagner hopes will benefit both students and St. Norbert.
“That’s really the line of communication they want,” Wagner said. “They’re always on Twitter. That’s the easiest way to get a hold of them.”
Some SNC-related Twitter accounts to follow: