Warning: This page will not be
as entertaining as many of the other pages are. Résumés
are serious business, no joke.
Résumés are an essential
part of life. They pretty much represent the type of person you
are - the jobs you hold or have held, how long you've worked there,
your experience, your education ... résumés are your
entire life on two pages (a résumé should never be
more than two pages long).
Be sure to include these things on
Education- state your most recently completed education. Include
the school name (if it's not well known, also name the city and
state), your graduation date, your up-to-date GPA, and your major
Work Experience- list it in order from most recent to the least.
Include the full name of the company, the city and state of its
location, the time period in which you were employed, your most
recent title, and a brief description of your job duties.
Affiliations (if applicable)- if you are a recent college graduate
who held relevant affiliations or offices, they might be valuable
to include in your résumé. For example, if you are
applying for an accounting position and you were the Treasurer of
a club with a substantial budget, that experience could be helpful
in attaining the position.
Accomplishments (if applicable)- Include awards or certificates
that you may have received that are relevant to the job application,
also any scholarships that you may have been awarded in school.
Skills- List any relevant skills you have acquired. For example,
computer skills (Quark, Photoshop, HTML, etc.), AP Style, Design
Volunteer Work- This is relevant if your other information does
not fill the résumé, or the job you are applying for
would be particularly interested in a certain area you volunteered.
Seven Things to Know
Writing Your First Résumé
Creating your first résumé is a vital
step in launching your career. The process may seem daunting. You
have to put all your best qualities on paper, make yourself look
more attractive than the next person and completely sell yourself,
all on an 8 1/2 X 11 –inch sheet of paper.
“You have only a few seconds to snag the employer’s
attention,” writes Seattle base career coach Robin Ryan in
“Winning Résumés.” “You must sell
the employer within 15 seconds of looking at your résumé,
or you’ll lose the job.” Here are seven tips to help
you catch an employer’s attention.
1. Start with the basics.
It sounds obvious, but your résumé must include your
name, address, phone number and e-mail address. Be mindful of the
address you include. College students, in particular, tend to move
often, so include a permanent address, such as your parent's address.
Take care with your e-mail address too. "Make your user ID
related to your name, not any nickname attributions," says
Ryan. If you want to appear professional to an employer, a user
ID like "sexylegs2000" will not work. If your personal
e-mail address is not appropriate, set up a new account just for
2. Include an objective and summary of skills.
These sections come right after your personal information and, for
a first-time job seeker, should be concise.
Objective: Editing Position
Summary of Skills: Excellent writer proficient in copyediting and
familiar with AP style. Extremely organized, with ample experience
meeting deadlines and working in high-pressure situations.
Your "summary of skills" should highlight experiences
and qualifications that the employer is seeking. Remember, says
Ryan, "a résumé is not about what you want. It's
about what you offer an employer."
3. Choose the right résumé
There are three basic types of résumés: chronological,
functional and combination. Chronological résumés
focus on work experience, and list professional experience in order
from most to least recent. Functional résumés concentrate
more on skills. A combination style works well for first-time job
seekers. You can point out professional experience, but also draw
more attention to your skills, since your work experience is probably
limited. Ryan suggests that first-time résumé writers
divide their résumé into these categories: work experience,
academic experience, community service and extracurricular activities.
4. Brainstorm your experience and skills.
While you may be struggling to think of pertinent work experience,
Ryan says that you have more than you realize. For example, if you
have worked in a retail operation, your skills and qualifications
include customer service skills, dependability, accountability,
the ability to work as a part of a team, and experience in managing
money. Were you a full-time summer babysitter? This means you coordinated
schedules, handled finances and were extremely responsible. Many
skills learned in part-time positions are quite relevant to the
corporate world. Don't underestimate the skills you have gained.
5. Your academic and volunteer experience
Don't think that your schooling means nothing to an employer. Your
computer skills will be particularly attractive and should be highlighted.
You can also demonstrate your aptitude and strengths by project-specific
examples of class work you have done. For example, if you were a
journalism major in college, tell the employer about major articles
you wrote and the legwork you did to complete those projects. Also
consider your volunteer and extracurricular experience. If you held
an officer position in a club or fraternity/sorority, were an athlete,
volunteered or took a leadership role in any other extracurricular
organization, you have valuable experience to list.
6. Know the cardinal rules of résumé
First, use strong action verbs and leave out the word "I."
Words like "created," "developed," "organized,"
"motivated," and "produced" all say much more
than "did." Next, remember that your résumé
should not be more than one page when you first leave college. And,
finally, never send a résumé without proper proofreading.
7. Never, ever lie.
So you were just two courses short of your college degree and think
the company won't figure out that you didn't actually graduate?
Think again. If you lie on your résumé, you will be
caught. Don't misrepresent your past – it will come back to