Tips for creating your first resume

A résumé is a document that sums up your skills, experiences and accomplishments so a potential employer can quickly see whether you are a good fit for a position. Before you start applying for jobs or internships, you’ll need to write a résumé. Even if you’re new to the workforce, a strong résumé can help you stand out in the crowd.

  • Your resume should look professional – no fancy or colored fonts and on plain letterhead and absolutely no longer than one page.
  • A complete resume includes:
    • Your name and contact information at the top. Make the top of your resume look professional and clear by including your full name, contact telephone number and email address and current address.
    • An objective and summary statement – what type of position you’re looking for and your employment goals. Also include two to three sentences about yourself.
    • Your work experience – While you probably don’t have a lot of work experience at this point, include any job you’ve held that can show you’re reliable and responsible. This could be summer jobs, regular babysitting gigs, or seasonal employment.
    • Volunteer and extracurricular experience – Volunteering experience shows that you are hard-working, reliable and show commitment.
    • Education – Include where you graduated high school or when you received your High School Equivalency diploma. If you’ve taken any college courses, mention those too.
    • Skills – Chances are you have skills that are valuable to an employment. If you are proficient at any computer programs like Microsoft Excel or Adobe Photoshop say so in this section. List any languages you speak. If you’re still stuck, look to your hobbies for possible skills; maybe you’re great at using social media, taking photographs, or blogging.
  • Tailor your resume – Be sure to highlight different aspects of your work experience for different positions. Create an initial resume and then edit it for each job. Don’t forget to keep adding new experiences and skills to your résumé as you progress.
  • Be clear and concise – resumes should have short, clear descriptions. Be consistent with your formatting – if you use bullet points in one section use them in the others. Also be away of your grammar, spelling and punctuation.
  • Get feedback– Once you’ve written a draft of your resume and reviewed it for errors, get feedback from your family and friends who can help proofread it and catch any mistakes. They also might be able to give you feedback on style or formatting or suggest other skills and experiences you might be able to add.