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Five Resume Tips for College Students

Five Resume Tips for College Students

Kim Isaacs, Monster Resume Expert

September 04, 2009

You’re still in college, and the world of work can wait a few years. So who needs a resume?

You do. Armed with a well-constructed resume, you will be prepared for potential opportunities throughout your time in college. These include seasonal, part-time and temporary work, as well as assistantships, internships and fellowships. Another plus: You’ll be ready to update your resume when you’re looking for that first job after graduation.

So where do you start? Here are five tips for writing your first resume.

Start with a Qualifications Summary

Sue Campbell, a professional resume writer and president of 1st-Writer.com, says that a summary of your top qualifications is often more effective than an objective statement. This is particularly true if your career goal is undefined.

“I don’t recommend writing a vague objective, because it will typically focus on what the job seeker wants, which is usually of no consequence to the person making the hiring decision,” says Robyn Feldberg, a certified career management coach and owner of Abundant Success Career Services. “Instead of an objective, I recommend that students format a profile section that clearly gives the reader a picture of the value they offer a potential employer.” Keep your summary brief — a few hard-hitting sentences are perfect.

Give Education Top Billing

Typically, education is at the bottom of a resume, but students are often better served by moving their education toward the top.

“Without experience in the target field, education is often the most valuable information a student has to offer,” explains Campbell. "The education section can move down in priority as the job seeker gains experience.”

According to Feldberg, "when formatting education, include the name of the college or university, its city and state, anticipated graduation date, extracurricular activities and courses related to your job target.” If your GPA is 3.0 or higher, you can include that too.