Resume 101 – Getting Started

Posted: October 24, 2010 in Resume Tips

If you are looking for an internship, creating an outstanding resume will be one of your first steps.   This document will be your main mechanism for communicating your experience and skills to prospective employers and it can also help you organize your objectives and get you ready to begin your search.

What is the purpose of a resume?

Your resume is a tool to get you face to face with a prospective employer/internship provider.  It communicates your current education, accomplishments, skills and abilities.

What should I include on my resume?

Most resumes have four major sections: Objective, Education, Experience, Computer Skills.   Some prospective interns may decide to include additional sections, including: Volunteer Experience, Honors and Awards and Language Skills.

How long should my resume be?

Most college students who are searching for an internship should be able to summarize their accomplishments in a ONE PAGE resume.  Remember that a prospective employer may be receiving hundreds of resumes for a single internship. Your goal is to clearly and succinctly communicate why you would be a good fit.  It is important to note that various industries have different expectations for the length of candidate resumes.  Take some time to discuss these industry standards with a professor or mentor in your field.

Should I use a resume template?

Most word processing programs have templates that will provide formatting and organizational structure for your resume.  We believe that templates are a great place to START.  Once you have focused on inputting your information with a template, take creative license and make it your own.    As we stated, you may be competing with 10,50 or even 100 other resumes.  Make yours stand out.

My internship will be my first professional experience… I feel like I have nothing to put on a resume!

Prospective internship providers realize that your internship may be your first professional experience in the field.  Utilize your resume to highlight your TRANSFERABLE skills from volunteering, part time employment and college clubs and activities.   For help, visit our articles on Leveraging your College Experience, Part I and Part II.

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