​This week, the largest professional networking website LinkedIn announced the launch of University Pages to “help students at every critical milestone from campus to fulfilling, successful careers.” Similar to a company page, academic institutions can target prospective and current students, alumni, teachers, parents and others and keep them up to date on what on what’s happening in their community. Two hundred universities, including New York University, Villanova University, and University of Illinois, have already jumped on board and launched pages that provide students information about why their school is the right choice. And more are to come: LinkedIn plans to give access to thousands more institutions in the next few weeks. While LinkedIn won't be making any money directly off of this new tool, the launch of University Pages is a smart move for the platform. This tool will allow LinkedIn to greatly expand its user base. In order for University Pages to be an available resource, LinkedIn made changes to its Terms of Service, and effective September 12, users as young as 13 years old (depending on the country) will be able to join the network. This is huge, as teens are estimated to spend an average of 16.7 hours a week online, and, not to mention, a recently released survey that found fewer teens are ranking Facebook as the most important social media website. This is also great news for high-schoolers. Although it has been a while since I was deciding what college I wanted to attend (Go BU!), I do remember that visiting the school and speaking to people who went there was extremely useful. University Pages would have been an invaluable tool to have as a prospective student and gives current high-schoolers the opportunity to connect with students and alumni before even stepping on a campus. I am pleased to see that students will have the opportunity to get a head start on networking. I am hopeful that, despite the addition of younger users, LinkedIn’s platform will continue to thrive on simplicity and remain a professional-driven network. By Amey Owen, SM& Social Media Associate