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How Should A College Resume Look

Student Resume: Honors And Memberships

How your resume should look like

If you’ve received any awards, you can break out an honors section to list them. You can also have a skills section where you list soft skills as well as any programs, languages, or certifications you have.

When you’re first getting started writing a resume as a student, include as much information as possible. You can always edit it down later!

Let’s consider the following college student resume examples:

Classical Piano Student | Athens Music School | Jun ’20 – Present

The above example does not quantify or qualify much of the nature or extent of your work. However, adding quantifiable data around your contribution in the same would further your chances for getting shortlisted.

President | 24 Carrots Club | Aug ’19 – Aug ’20

  • Chaired meetings for the horse club on a weekly basis to plan and organize fundraisers for a budget of USD 10,000

Detailed or quantifiable activities represent commitment and responsibility that can help employers judge you as the most suitable candidate for the job.

Aim to have your resume be a single page.

A longer student resume is considered excessive for someone just starting out in a career.

Diverse Mix Of Skills

As a recent graduate, you dont need formal work experience to have a strong resume skills section. Just through your coursework and extracurricular activities, youve likely accumulated an array of marketable skills like:

Hard Skills:

  • Research
  • Team Leadership

Start by listing any technical skills, and any hard or soft skills you possess that are relevant to the position. Soft skills in particular are valuable, as they are usable for nearly any job.

However, dont only use your skills section to list skills. Youre missing out on a great opportunity to impress hiring managers if you dont include them in your relevant experience section.

For example, take a look at the following job description, with some key skills underlined in blue:

Below is an example of a relevant experience section that targets these key skills, again underlined in blue, demonstrating competence in these areas. Underlined in orange are several additional skills that are highly relevant to working at WWF, a charitable organization that depends on public awareness and support to succeed:

Meanwhile, use your skills section to include your other relevant skills that dont naturally fit into your relevant experience section:

How Important Is The Resume For College

Well, it depends.

In general, most colleges have a dedicated space on their application system called the Activities List where you will be able to list out all of the things youve been involved in outside of school. That section is your BEST place to share those details. Dont skip it.

However, some colleges offer the option of submitting a separate, more traditional style resume.

If you feel like youve totally communicated all of the important details in your Activities List, you may not need to submit a separate resume. In fact, for many colleges, you may not even have the opportunity to upload a traditional PDF resume.

But if given that option, should you do it?

Some colleges strongly recommend that you submit a resume along with your application While others forbid it So be sure to check with individual colleges to see what they prefer.

However, keeping a professional resume on hand will serve you in a few other ways. How?

Your resume:

  • Serves as a foundation for the Common App Activities List .

  • Gives teachers and counselors a framework for their letters of recommendation.

  • Provides you with a list of ready-made talking points for an admissions interview.

  • May inspire your Common App essay.

  • Is a requirement for many scholarships or internship and employment opportunities .

  • Finally, its like having your own business card. Theres a professional cool factor when youve got a slick resume to slap on someones desk.

    Now, lets make one.

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    College Graduate Resume Template

    Heres a recent college graduate resume template that you can paste into Microsoft Word or Google Docs and fill out. It includes an outline for each resume section you should include, and what information you should list to best emphasize your strengths.

    1. Resume Heading


    Most Recent Job Title or Project Name

    Employer or School Name / Location / Start Date End Date

    • Include a bulleted list of your accomplishments
    • Make sure you quantify these bullet points

    Earlier Job Title or Project Name

    Employer or School Name / Location / Start Date End Date

    • List key accomplishments from an earlier position, internship, or project
    • Assuming you no longer actively perform this job or project, make sure you use past tense verbs to describe your experience

    5. Skills

    Highlight your relevant professional skills. If you dont know what the hiring manager is looking for, try reading through the job requirements and pairing your own abilities with ones in the description.

    6. Additional Resume Section

    Heres where you can add any other information relevant to your background.

    This section could highlight publications, languages, volunteer experience, community service, professional associations you belong to, or any training or certifications.

    Details Countand Your Gut Is Usually Right

    College Resume Sample

    In a competitive job market, accuracy and details count. If there are misspellings, formatting errors, or grammatical errors on your resume, employers may construe this as a sign that your work habits would be equally sloppy and immediately dismiss you from consideration. As Zucchini explains,

    Make sure the formatting is consistent and text is aligned. I’ve seen resumes where the formatting was all over the place. Or fonts that just don’t look right, colors that are off. Check grammar and spelling “they’re” vs. “their””herd” vs. “heard” – I see this all the time.

    Most of the time, you know it in your gut. So listen to your gut, and also run it by friends and tell them they HAVE to be brutally honest with you, to look at it from the perspective of hiring younot the perspective of going out for drinks with you later!

    Read Also: Where To Put Relevant Coursework On A Resume

    When To Use A Hybrid Or Functional Canada Resume Format

    The functional resume is a versatile format that focuses on your skills and qualifications instead of experience. While your employment history is still included, it is usually listed after your skills and education section. That places greater emphasis on those skill sets, showcasing your suitability for the position. As a result, this option can sometimes be used effectively by newcomers to the workplace and those who are changing careers.

    A hybrid resume retains the expanded reverse chronological work experience section, but itâs no longer the bulk of the resume. Instead, the skills section is also expanded to include a summary of qualifications in addition to the technical skills or core competencies section.

    It should be noted, however, that many experts advise job seekers in Canada to stick to a format closer to the reverse chronological. Regardless of the format you chose, here is the basic information a hiring manager is looking for on your resume:

    • Name and contact information

    • Skills

    Write A Resume Objective For Graduate School

    A strong resume introduction will help you capture the interest of admissions committees and convince them that youre the right candidate for their program. While there are several different types of introductions, a resume objective is the ideal choice for grad school applicants because you can use it to directly target a universitys hiring committee.

    Resume objectives inform committee members about your achievements and goals without focusing heavily on your work history or specific skills .

    A graduate school resume objective is usually two or three sentences long, and should highlight your:

    • undergraduate degree and grades
    • name of the program and university where youre seeking admission

    Heres an example of a well-written graduate school resume objective:

    Undergraduate Economics student with proven leadership and research skills. Six months of international internship experience with the UNHCR. Seeking admission into New York Universitys Masters program in Economics with a specialization in Development Economics.

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    Resume Tips For College Students And Recent Grads

    When you are a college student seeking an internship or a job, your resume can look just like everyone else’s and that can make your job search a challenge.

    How can you get your resume noticed when all the candidates are basically equal when it comes to their educational background? It’s important, in this competitive job market, to have more than your education on your resume. A college degree in and of itself isn’t enough.

    Move Education Underneath Work Experience

    Teach#18- How should your Resume look like in 2020/ How to Make a good Resume .

    Now that you have job experience, thats more important to highlight then you actual degree, says Eison. Recruiters spend less than 30 seconds some studies say six seconds to review a resume, so its important to have your work experience front and center on a resume. They want to see where you worked, and more important, what you achieved. When they scan the rest of the resume, they will then look for education. But education, is no longer what will stand out, even if you went to a so-called prestigious university.

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    Make Your College Resume Easy To Scan

    Put your full name, address, phone number, e-mail, and your high school at the top. Here are some commonly used approaches to listing your entries.

    • Reverse chronological order, with the most recent entry listed first

    You might want to have a second version of your college resumeone that includes your weighted and unweighted GPAs and your standardized test scoresto use for scholarship applications.

    A good college resume will be helpful throughout the admissions processand even later as you apply for internships, scholarships, leadership positions and jobs during your freshman year of college. It takes time to create an effective college resume, but most students find its worth the effort.

    Use These Additional Sections

    If youve followed all our tips till now, congrats – youre around 90% into creating a top-notch college application resume.

    Now, lets talk about how you can take that to 100%!

    In addition to the conventional resume sections weve covered till now, you can include the following to help you stand out in a sea of other applicants:

    • Awards. Here, you can list any awards won in competitions .
    • Volunteer experience. Did you clean up your town, or maybe you volunteered at an animal rescue center as a high school student? Any kind of volunteering can help your college application resume because it shows youre a responsible community member. If its somehow related to your field or future major, thats a big plus.
    • Projects. Be them individual , or school-related , projects can show that youre passionate and creative.
    • Sports. Poet Juvenal said a healthy mind in a healthy body. This means that physical exercise is an important part of mental and psychological well-being . Do you excel at specific sports? Include them in your resume!.
    • Languages. Being fluent in a foreign language is another plus for a prospective college student. Make sure to show it in your college application resume.

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    What Is A College Student Resume

    A college student resume is a summary of your studies and academic qualifications. Although as a student you may have little professional experience, there are many other activities and skills that you can present in your student resume. These could include summer camps, part-time jobs, volunteering positions, sports, cultural activities or whatever relevant past experiences you may have.

    Keep in mind that prospective employers are aware that you are embarking on a career for the first time, so they do not expect a long list of work experience. However, they will want to gauge your maturity, motivation, ambition and work ethic, so make sure to highlight how college has helped you develop these qualities.

    Image description

    • Email address

    Get Rid Of College Extracurricularsyour Resume Is Not A Biography

    College Resume

    Those college extracurricular activities, social clubs, and college coursework that were so important to your resume template or resume format when graduating from college, either should be moved to the bottom of the resume in an additional information section, or removed all together. You dont need a list of college classes anymore, and only include brief sentences or details about social clubs, or extracurricular activities, if included.

    You will then free up some space on your resume to include your current job experience and key accomplishments which you spent the past months/years cultivating, says Terra Eison, Food, Beverage, and Culinary Recruiter for Hilton Worldwide, a global hospitality company. Recruiters are more interested in your work experience and how your skills align with the open position.

    A resume isnt a career biography. Its a marketing tool that quickly shows the next employer your background matches their needs. So understand this: When it comes to updating your resume for that next step in your career, you dont need to include everything on your resume, says Mike McGuiness, Executive Director of Jobipedia, a non-profit organization that provides career advice for entry-level workers from a network of US-based hiring professionals at Americas top employers.

    Include the information and experiences related to the job youre applying for, says McGuiness. Highlight the skills and experiences that are transferrable to the new role.

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    Put Weight On Your Education

    Taking into consideration that, as a student, you most likely lack significant work experience, your education is the first thing admission officers will look at.

    As such, you should give your education its due importance in your college application resume.

    For starters, make sure to include this must-have information:

    • Your high schools name and location
    • Your GPA
    • The date of your graduation

    In addition, though, combine that with some relevant achievements that can make your education pop out.

    Lets take a look at two examples. The second student has simply listed out the essential education information, whereas the first has taken their education section to the next level.

    Correct Example

    • 3rd place at the International Mathematical Olympiad
    • Vice-President of the Science Club
    • GPA: 3.6
    • SAT Scores: 1350

    Incorrect Example

    • SAT Scores: 1400

    Demonstrate Yourself As A Problem Solver:

    Employers look out for people who can exhibit that they are problem solvers. So you should create your resume with precise scenarios that show how you solved a problem, whether it is with college projects or internships.

    Dont just write down what you did but convert that into how exactly you did it and demonstrate how you can aid the organization with your skills.

    Adding stories, projects and engaging content will give you a lot to talk about with your potential employer.

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    Work Experience And Projects

    In any resume, no matter the stage of your career, your work experience and projects should take up at least 70% of the overall space. As such, these are the most important sections and will decide whether you get an interview or not.

    When you have a few years of experience then the size of your projects section will decrease as the size of your work experience section expands.

    If you have an internship relevant to the job you’re applying to, then of course this should be detailed in your “work experience” section. As a college student your work experience can also contain any part-time jobs you had while in school even if they don’t seem relevant to the job you’re applying to.

    It’s not easy to balance work and school and having a part-time job demonstrates responsibility and drive, key attributes employers are looking for in prospective employees.

    When talking about your work experience, there are a few key tips you should follow:

    • Mention the skills you demonstrated on the job.
    • Quantify the impact of your work whenever possible.
    • Talk specifically about your role, avoid being too general.
    • Use action verbs like “owned” or “led” to highlight your leadership abilities.

    I’m sure you’ve heard that numbers speak louder than words, and that’s especially true on your resume. By providing numerical context around your work, you convince the hiring manager of your ability to meaningfully contribute.

    WRONG – general work experience descriptions

    Digital Marketing Intern

    College Student Resume No Experience

    High School Resume: How To Write Your First Resume (Plus Template)

    Use this template

    Why this resume works

    • Hiring managers understand that while you’re in school your resume won’t be jam packed with highly relevant work experience. The key is that for things you do include you highlight why they make you a strong fit for the job or internship you’re applying to.
    • For example, it doesn’t seem like being on the club soccer team is highly relevant to being a business analyst. But by focusing on how they organized practices and led a local volunteer effort, this student does a really good job of demonstrating qualities that might appeal to a hiring manager.
    • Not to mention the hiring manager may be a soccer fan so this could help this student stand out! Don’t be afraid to highlight your interests and hobbies.

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    Cv Skills Example: The Tools For The Job

    The skills section of a college student CV should be defined by the job you’re looking to attain. Even at this early stage of life, job seekers often have more relevant skills and professional qualities than they give themselves credit for. The trick is to choose and describe them correctly on your CV.

    Step 1: Create a master list

    The master list is a free-form document electronic or or even a piece of paper where you write down every skill and quality you can think of. Keep your master list handy for reference whenever a new job opportunity arises. Grab it for easy cherry-picking to tailor each new version of your specific resumeto the job application.

    Step 2: Use industry knowledge

    This depends heavily on what job you’re seeking and for what purpose. As a college student there are typically two possibilities. One is a temp job to pay the bills and acquire experience. The other is more farsighted an internship or entry-level position in a job related to your degree or education focus.

    Make sure to understand the difference between hard skillsand soft skillsand how to assess their relative importance to specific jobs and employers. Hard skills are pragmatic tools used in daily duties while soft skills relate to social interactions, self-management, teamwork and so on.

    Step 3: Analyze the job description

    Check out a college student resume sample for the skills section below.


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