Whether you’re applying for a summer job, preparing college applications, or just writing one for a class assignment, it’s more and more common for high school students to need a resume. But, have you run into any of these issues as you start writing?
- most of the resume examples available are for experienced professionals or college students
- you probably don’t have much, if any, relevant work experience – yet
- you have skills you could offer different employers, but you’re not sure how to describe them
Understand the Purpose of the Resume
A lot of people think that a resume will get them a job, but in truth, a resume’s purpose is to get you an interview. Most employers only take 15-20 seconds to scan a resume! They are usually looking for some key terms, skills, abilities and experience that suggest to them that you could do the job they want you to do. If you catch their attention in those first 15-20 seconds, they will probably take a much closer look at your resume, then may ask you to come in for an interview. So you need to make sure you catch their attention, and fast! But how? Emphasize the skills and abilities you have by highlighting them close to the top of your resume. After all, we read from top to bottom, and left to right. So anything you want to highlight should appear close to the top of the document; within individual phrases, keep relevant information closest to the left side of the page. Also keep in mind that your resume will be most effective if you tailor it to each position you’re applying for. At the very least, prepare tailored resumes for each type of position, i.e. retail, life guarding, education, summer camp, etc.