Resumes & Letters
What is a Resume?
A resume is your personal marketing brochure and an integral part of your job search. Its purpose is to gain you invitations to interviews. As a marketing device, a resume must convey who you are, highlight your qualifications and minimize your limitations to prospective employers. You want them to "screen you in" for an interview based on your resume, not "screen you out." A quality resume is: accurate, descriptive, brief, easy-to-read, graphically engaging and laser printed. For more information please log into your Job Finder account and access the Resume Writing handout and podcast.
Through preparation and organization, you can develop an effective resume. Start with a careful and accurate assessment of your career objective, educational background, work history, skills, achievements, activities, interests and other experiences which will be of interest to an employer. Analyze and describe these experiences in terms of the "skills" and "results." Review and organize the facts about yourself. What can you do? What potential do you have to show an employer? Remember, employers view your resume as a direct reflection of you.
Please Note: As stated earlier, the visual presentation of your resume is as important as the content. The length depends upon your experience. Most college graduates should be able to incorporate this information on one or two pages. Use of underlining, capitalization, italics, font size and "white spacing" href="#" enhances appearance and facilitates reading. We recommend that your resume be word processed and laser-printed.
The Chronological - Jobs are listed in chronological order, starting with the most recent (which generally receives the greatest emphasis) and working back through the years
The Functional Resume - Highlights your qualifications with little emphasis on specific dates.
The Combinational Format - Similar to functional resume format, company names and dates are included in separate section.
Curriculum Vitae (CV) - Highly specialized and only used for graduate school applications, academia or research positions. For more information please log into your Job Finder account and access the Curriculum Vitae handout.
Electronic Resume - Content is text-only with no formatting.
Scannable Resume - Companies scan the content of your resumeinto a database for storage and key word searches.
For more information on Electronic and Scannable resumes check the Riley Guide.
- Stop in with your printed resume during CDC walk-in hours.
- Bring in your resume and place it in our Resume Critique Box on the front desk. Your resume will be critiqued within four to five business days. You can then stop in to the office to pick up your critiqued resume.
- Make an appointment with a counselor to work on editing and strengthening your resume.
- Email your resume to the CDC and it will be critiqued within four to five business days. You can then stop in to the office to pick up your critiqued resume.
- Use a format which best displays your unique background
- Be positive in what you say about yourself
- Be complete and direct about relevant information, avoid being vague
- Have others read your resume and discuss what they have learned from it
- Project a professional image through an immaculate, eye-pleasing appearance, spacing, margins and headings
- Keep it to one page, unless have had significant experience related to your career goals
- Use action verbs which clearly state your skills and experience. For example: designed, analyzed
- Avoid using the same action verb repeatedly
- Be consistent in use of indentation, underlining, capitalization and spacing
- Use a dictionary when in doubt about spelling -- mistakes indicate carelessness
- Quint Careers Action Verb list
- Resume and Letter Tips from Monster
- Resume and CV
- Rockport Institute
- Resume Writing
- Job Star Resume Guide
- Federal Application and Resume
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Last modified: January 03, 2013 15:26:09