“Social Media Manager” was recently named one of the Best New Jobs in America, according to CNN.
Looking ahead to 2013, social media is set to become a required skill-set, as demand for professionals experienced with social media continues to rise. Social media is gaining adoption company-wide, and currently there are over 13,000 job postings per month requiring social media skills. To meet this growing demand for social media experts in the workforce, HootSuite has created a Higher Education Program.
In 2013, expect to see more universities incorporate social media education into their curriculums and degree programs, as undergraduate and MBA programs adapt to the changing market. New grads looking to gain work experience will have a leg up on the competition if they have proper training or certification, as over 13% of internships in 2012 were for social media related positions, according to Internships.com
The first school to host the HootSuite University‘s Higher Education Program was S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, at Syracuse University with Dr. William Ward in January 2012.
After a successful semester, over 20 professors entered into a pilot semester for Fall 2012, which saw over 800 students learn about social media and earn their HootSuite Certification. Professors integrated up-to-date social media resources into their curricula, allowing them to focus on teaching theory and strategy while students learned the hands-on techniques from HootSuite University courseware.
Whether students were learning how to manage a company page, their LinkedIn profile, or executed an entire social media campaign, they became familiar with the tools and skills needed to enter into the workforce. 88% of participating students felt they were better prepared to use social media professionally after completing the program.