Creating Your Résumé

A résumé is an outline of your accomplishments which contains the strengths and enthusiasms that make you a unique individual. It provides a snapshot of your education, experience, skills and interests. The purpose of a good resume is to get an interview, so the picture you paint should highlight areas relevant to the kinds of positions that interest you! The employer's point of view should be your guide. Most employers look for common strengths in the candidates. They look for people who take initiative, demonstrate leadership, get the job done or motivate others to do it. Therefore, descriptions of any jobs or activities should reflect both the results you have achieved and your potential.

The Sum of the Parts

While recruiters who screen resumes don't expect them to be identical, they do look for consistency and logical organization. The following represent typical categories found in a resume.

Click on a section to learn more. Please download "Résumé Samples" from the right column to view an extensive collection of examples.

Getting Started

Begin by making a list of everything you have done. Don't limit yourself at this point. List jobs, school activities, sports, awards and honors, hobbies, artistic talent, international experiences, foreign language proficiency, special skills, volunteer activities - in short, any and every skill, interest, or achievement that might be of interest to an employer.

Once you've listed everything, you're ready to start selecting the items which present the best picture of you to a potential employer. You can start by deciding how you want to group the entries. The goal is to honed your resume to one page.

Keep in mind that you must always be truthful. You're creating a document that sells your virtues, but don't get carried away. Truth in advertising is a must.