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Entry-Level Resume Dilemma: Recent College Graduate

Entry-Level Resume Dilemma: Recent College Graduate

Kim Isaacs, Monster Resume Expert

September 10, 2009

You’ve spent four years or more building your knowledge and perhaps even earned a high GPA. So why aren’t employers clamoring for your services? The problem you and other new graduates face is that hiring managers are more interested in what you can do for them than what you did in school. So use your resume to convince employers that your academic success is transferable to the workplace.

What’s Your Entry-Level Job Goal?

It’s important for recent grads to provide a targeted objective statement. The objective can be stated in a formal objective section or referenced in a qualifications summary. Whichever approach you choose, avoid flowery or generalized objectives that are too commonly used by new graduates. For example:

Bad: Seeking a challenging position with a progressive company that will offer opportunity for growth and advancement.

Good: Honors graduate of ABC College’s speech communication program seeking a position in training and development. Offer hands-on experience in classroom teaching, corporate training and communication research.

If you have more than one possible career objective, develop variations of your resume, each one targeted to a different goal.

Emphasize Academic Credentials

If your related work history is minimal, place your education before work experience. On Monster’s Resume Builder, use the Career Objective field to mention your educational credentials.

List academic honors such as dean’s list, distinctions such as summa cum laude, scholarships and other awards. As a general guideline, list your GPA if it’s at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. If your GPA leaves something to be desired, use your major GPA if it’s higher than your overall GPA.

Consider adding a list of related courses in your education section so hiring managers can see that you have a strong academic foundation.

Highlight Educational Experiences

When reviewing your resume, hiring managers want to understand what type of worker you would be if they hired you. So describe educational experiences such as internships, practicums, class projects and even volunteer activities as if they were paid work experiences. A good internship can help you land the perfect entry-level job that you’ve been looking for.

If you lack work experience related to your goal, include your internships and practicums in your experience section. Give examples of actual assignments, challenges you faced, your contribution, and the results and benefits to the employer.

When describing unrelated jobs, keep the descriptions to a minimum. For example, if you waited tables to help pay for college but your goal is software engineering, you don’t need to provide a description of your day-to-day food service responsibilities. Just include your employer’s name, location, job title and dates. You can briefly include any extra responsibilities you were given as a result of your performance or special recognition (such as Employee of the Month) to help demonstrate your strong work ethic.

Add Keywords

Your resume should be optimized for keywords to ensure you are found in an electronic applicant search. Keywords are buzzwords that an employer would use to find a match for a job opening. Job titles, educational credentials, certifications and skills are all possible keywords.

A great way to start considering the right keywords for your occupation is to review job advertisements for your ideal position. Look at the requirements, and if you see certain terms used frequently, they should probably be in your resume.

Pick the Format That Works for You

A traditional chronological resume format, which emphasizes employment history, doesn’t usually work for recent graduates. You will need to highlight your academic foundation, motivation to succeed in your field and the key skills that would help employers achieve their objectives. Many new graduates prefer to use a combination or functional resume to relay their key qualifications.

Find Entry-Level Jobs for College Graduates

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    11 months ago


    had to miss each other. Just too much like a person, indescribable, it will pass you by.Love is a warm and lingering thing, giving motivation. Like a person suddenly become overwhelmed, he lost self. Pay for his silence, he wanted to know but afraid he knew. I want to protect your glass-like heart, I wish you well. am with you as if the distance between man and God as distant territory, do not know when to hit each other? From the upstairs and downstairs is the distance I am with you, see your shadow through the window, watching you appear to disappear from my sight. I wonder if all the casual encounter is deliberate?You are my scenery along the way, I am passing your life. Quietly watch you in the sunny sky. You are my palm Yimiyangguang, beautiful and sad. In a corner of the campus, ushered in the Last Judgment. Your gentle refuse, I quietly leave. Lovesick not, do not fear the past, with their greatest courage in the face in the future such like. I think I like you, but never told you.Some branches, a tea, a roll of old books in one hand and a good move. Who is drinking the Acacia, recalling that moment Looking back, who promised me Half flashy tilt the worlPerhaps that is best for you not to disturb love. The world is not the best thing, but I never get lost again.Never have been, they are not eligible to grieve; never had, never talk about what? Do not believe the so-called forever, vows to say when the moment will not always forever. My next life I have waited too long, you can not afford to just seize the day life. Even if you and I meet again next life, as never met a second time.Maybe I should find time to quietly leave your world. Young and frivolous, always opinionated strong. Once thought a man with total white first, but found a dream but bustling.I want to earn more bread, you embrace happiness, let happiness slip from the fingers. More I want to have a chance to embrace happiness, so that each mind. But time is too short, too wide fingers, too late to embrace happiness had to go by.Perhaps the young and frivolous, negative Shaohua spring laugh. With little reason to like a person, there is little reason to be used live? Do not think that makes you a promise the people should be entrusted to life, sometimes you never promised people have done for you more. No one reason for Hello, no one is willing to pay for you all, just because you love too. Best love in the eyes of others is sparkling. Evenly matched with each other, and the gap will not widen the distance, not because of differences too difficult to integrate into each other's livesWhen really care about a person, they do not easily give up, do not care to say just to deceive the public. Sometimes, love is a very delicate matter. Never mind the worth and not worth it, just like and dislike. Sometimes I did not give up life to throw in the towel, but suddenly understand. Not care about you, just because you love will leave you too let you fly freely.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 1 year ago


  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 5 years ago


    This is one of the best articles that I have come across regarding resumes. I have done several searches online and looked at Microsoft Office but every example (or guide) is simple and generic. This article will aid me in creating a resume that stands out!

  • Superhero_logo


    over 6 years ago


    Please keep your comments on topic to the article -- Any comments posted with embedded links leading to questionable infected sites outside MonsterCollege will be removed and the poster's account will be banned from MonsterCollege. Thank you.