Quote from ScientistSalarian
I guess what I'm asking is:
1) Do you feel like connecting with classmates on Facebook was genuinely helpful to you as a nursing student?
2) Is it true that employers look at Facebook when hiring? I'd never post drunken photos or friend patients or anything stupid like that, but would not having a Facebook page be some sort of a red flag?
Any insight would be appreciated, thanks!
The helpfulness of a class Facebook page depends entirely on the class participating in it. I know that's a terrible non-answer, but it's held true in my own experience. My class Facebook page was pretty much worthless, but I've seen other class pages which were amazingly helpful.
Something you might want to consider though is that many (hopefully all!) of your classmates will eventually become RN's. Facebook is a convenient tool to network with your classmates and to stay in touch with them post-graduation. You never know when a former study buddy might suddenly tip you off to a great opportunity down the road. It'd be a shame if they heard of an opening, immediately thought of you, but then couldn't get in touch to let you know, right?
I can't speak for employers and their stance on Facebook, but I will say that I have seen several nursing students expelled from their programs due to misuse of social media. It seems like you're aware of this issue from your post, but seriously, HIPAA is an amazingly broad and powerful piece of legislation. I've never heard of a nursing student who deliberately violated HIPAA; it's always a tragic underestimation of the scope of protection HIPAA provides. Tread carefully if you do decide to join the Facebooking masses.