Refreshing Your Resume

Make an impression on paper


We’ve reached the point in the semester when students are frantically trying to find a summer internship or a full-time position. At the same time, it’s midterm season, and no one wants to spend hours working on their resume when that Nervous Systems exam is so soon. Here are some foolproof ways to give your resume a boost before you hit send on that next application:

  • Use bullet points! Large blocks of texts are confusing for employers who don’t have much time to sift through applications.
  • Get rid of articles (a, an, the). Resumes are supposed to be concise, so adding too many full sentences can detract from the point. Instead of saying “Implemented a marketing plan that included social media and a direct mail campaign,” be more direct and say “Implemented marketing plan including social media and direct mail.” The second version sounds more firm and direct, which employers like to see in candidates.
  • Don’t write in the third person. As a matter of fact, don’t write in the first person either. Remove the pronouns, since the employer can assume everything on the resume is your work. Your name is at the top! “I analyze incoming memos” doesn’t sound nearly as polished as “Analyze incoming memos.”
  • Remove the minute details. We’ve all had to spruce up our resumes with the little things we’ve done that don’t really matter. However, when you’re reaching out to employers, they will see right through the fluff and realize that your skills aren’t truly developed. Instead, highlight more of the responsibilities and accomplishments you’ve had within fewer roles, rather than listing all the different titles you’ve held.
  • Keep your font between 10-12 point and make sure your margins are within 0.5”-1”. Anything outside these parameters will stand out to employers, and not in a good way.

If you have time, be sure to visit the Career Center to find workshops and drop-in hours for resume review. Even if you’re not currently applying to jobs, it’s important to make sure your resume is always up-to-date, so don’t wait until the very last minute to update it!

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