It’s graduation season and for many the thrill of accomplishment wanes as the reality of getting a job sets in. We see many recent grads and in nearly every case the anxiety is the same. We understand and empathize and try to offer encouragement. But the most important thing we can offer is a dose of reality that the college placement office didn’t provide.
If you’re in this situation, don’t panic. In nearly two decades of writing resumes not much has changed in terms of what most college placement offices are sending the kids out in the world with resume-wise. We are still seeing the standard “task and duty” resumes that are neither creative, compelling nor inspiring.
Here are five things we think could be included in every recent grad’s resume:
1. Areas of interest
If you don’t tell the reader what you’re interested in, how will the reader know? So speak up! A section entitled “Areas of Interest” is a good conversation starter and much more interesting than that description of your job in the cafeteria.
Let’s face it. If you’re a recent grad, chances are you don’t have a boatload of real-world experience. So, be sure to tell the reader about what you studied and what you learned.
3. Project work
Papers, projects, programs, etc. All of these make good reading and speak volumes about you as a student. So if you don’t have a great internship with a company in your field, lead with your strong suit – your project history from your classes.
4. What you learned
So, you went to Outer Mongolia to study native peoples. If you don’t put some context or a couple of takeaways around it, it looks like a junket. Make sure the reader knows the value of this experience and what you gained.
5. Outside activities
Hiring managers are more interested in your outside activities than your social life. So, include that volunteer work, that booster club project, your community involvement, your summer job at a local not-for-profit, etc.
If you’re still stuck, wondering how to package and present all those wonderful college experiences, call us. We’re happy to do a complimentary resume review. It’s competitive out there and the investment in a good resume is an investment in your future success.