Chances are, if you’re writing your first resume, you’ve never had a “real job.” So where do you even start if you have no real work experience? Fortunately, there is a way to craft your resume to showcase all of the experience, accomplishments and characteristics it takes to land your very first job.
The Order of Your Resume
Besides your name and contact information, your resume
should first feature a brief summary about you and what you’re looking for. State what year you are in school as well as any adjectives that you would use to describe yourself. For instance, if you’re a team captain or serve in student council, you could mention your experience in leadership. Also, mention what it is you’re looking for: part-time work, a summer internship or job shadow.
To date, your greatest experience has been your education. Under education, you can highlight your school, GPA as well as any academic achievements you may have received so far in your high school or college career.
Follow up your school information with extracurricular, volunteer and leadership experience. While your education gives a picture of how you perform academically, your extracurriculars help to define you as a person. Finally, list any skills that you have that would help to make you appear more employable.
Make No Mistakes
The fastest way to get your resume rejected has nothing to do with experience; it does, however, have everything to do with punctuation, grammar and spelling. Pay attention to the details, and proofread your resume multiple times. It’s also best to ask a parent, teacher or mentor to take a look at your resume as well. A second set of eyes will catch any mistakes that you may have missed.
They will also be able to help you with the flow of your resume or provide advice on things to include or avoid. After all, most adults in your life will have written their own resume. And if your parents or older siblings don’t have any resume experience, ask your guidance counselor
Finally, be sure to make updates to your resume frequently. If your GPA changes or you have a new accolade to advertise, just pull your resume up and make a note. With frequent updates, you’ll be able to provide your resume at a moment’s notice.
But that’s not the only type of updating you should keep in mind when it comes to your resume: you should also update your summary with each new position for which you plan to apply. The more tailored your summary, the more interested, prepared and knowledgeable you seem. After all, the summary is your first impression to the employer – so make it a good one!