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RESUME WRITING
Resources for College Students

 


GRAD SCHOOL PREP n CAREER PLANNING n CAREER EXPLORATION 
COLLEGE TO CAREER TRANSITION
n JOB MARKET n JOB SEARCH
RESUME WRITING
n INTERVIEW PREP n WORKPLACE ISSUES


 



Looking Good on Paper
 

"A resume is a self-promotional document that presents you
in the best possible light, for the purpose of getting invited to a job interview."

-YANA PARKER

 

SELLING YOURSELF


Your résumé functions as an advertisement of yourself.  It is an effective way of marketing and packaging yourself for the job market.  It is a promotional tool that presents you at your best. The content of your résumé must arouse the curiosity of the reader.  It must make the reader want to meet you.  A good résumé will enable you reaffirm in writing, on paper, your positive qualities, skills and characteristics.  A good résumé presents supportive information that justifies your job objective.  By stating your work-related accomplishments, responsibilities and qualifications, you document your capabilities.

Effective résumé writing utilizes good marketing strategy. Taking a strategic approach to writing your resume will ensure there is a good reason and sound logic behind every choice you make in developing this important document. Your résumé is a thirty-second commercial about you.  You are the product.  Your résumé is the advertisement. Your résumé is a sales brochure.  You are the product it is trying to sell. Your résumé is one of your key sales tools.  It emphasizes the advantages and benefits of using your services.  Your résumé presents, promotes and publicizes you...  by grabbing attention...   by sparking interest.


 



n Resume Writing Notes
n Resume and Cover Letter Templates
n Sample Resumes and Cover Letters
n Resume Verb List
n Writing a Strong Resume
n BLS: Resumes, Applications and Cover Letters
n OOQ: Resumes, Applications and Cover Letters
n About: Resumes and Cover Letters
n Riley Guide: Preparing Your Resume for E-mail and On-Line Posting
n Virginia Tech: Cover Letters, Types and Samples
n About: Cover Letters
n Video Seminar: Resume Writing
n Video Clip: Resume Writing

n Damn Good Resume
n YouTube: Resume Writing Tip

n YouTube: Daniel Pink: My Resume Has Too Many Jobs

 



RESUME IMPACT

"A résumé is the best way and largely the only way to disseminate important information about yourself.  It is a personal advertisement.  A portrait of you in writing.  Just as a picture is worth a thousand words, so a résumé speaks eloquently in your behalf."

-BURDETTE BOSTWICK

 

"A résumé is what nearly everyone you approach in your job search is going to ask you to send them before they take any action on your behalf. You can think of it as the driver's license of job hunting: You can't go anywhere without it. What it is, in short, is a one or two page summary of your work history, educational background, and work-related personal qualifications. Its fundamental purpose is to give prospective employers a convenient and reasonably efficient way to determine, at a glance, if you warrant a closer look."

-MAX MESSMER

"Remember: a resume is a self-promotional document that presents you in the best possible light, for the purpose of getting invited to a job interview. It's not an official personnel document. It's not a job application. It's not a career obituary! And it's not a confessional."

-YANA PARKER

 



SUMMARIZE YOURSELF

 

Your resume is a sales brochure not an owner's manual.  It is an overview.  It is a brief summary.  It should be concise, compact and condensed.  Short and succinct. A good resume does not provide detailed information.  It is not an official document of your life.  It does not review your entire existence on earth.  It is not an account of every job you've ever held. It is not your job history or life story.

 



n About: Curriculum Vitae
n About: Curriculum Vitae Samples
n CV Writing Tips
n Job Star: Curriculum Vitae
n Quint Careers: Curriculum Vitae
n Dartmouth: Writing Your Curriculum Vitae
n Successful CVs and Resumes
n About: Curriculum Vitae vs. Resume
n Career Builder: CV and Resume, What's the Difference?
n Career Resource Center: Resume vs. Curriculum Vitae
n Professional Samples: Resumes, CVs, Cover Letters
n About: Portfolios for Employment
n Amazon: Employment Portfolio

 


 

FIRST IMPRESSION

 

Your résumé represents you.  It acts as an ambassador in your behalf.  It is a calling card.  It is used to initiate contact.  It is oftentimes the first impression an employer has of you. It is up to you to make this first impression count. Your résumé is also a reminder.  After an initial meeting or after an interview,  your résumé serves as a record, and provides positive support for your personal impression.  It helps the interviewer remember you.

 

DOOR OPENER

 

Your résumé does not get you a job.  Your résumé only gets you an interview.  An interview gets you a job.  Your résumé should prompt the employer to exclaim,  "I want to meet this person!"   All you want is a chance to tell your story in person.  Your résumé opens the door, but it does not close the sale.

 

CHOICE CUTS

 

The information on your résumé should be positive, selective and relevant.  Keep your  presentation short and full of spark.  Your résumé should be a concise statement of what you've learned from past experiences and how they will help a future employer.  Your résumé must project a positive image.  It must fit both you and the circumstances. Most importantly, your résumé must appeal to the reader.  Target your résumé to the specific needs of the employer who is currently reading your résumé.  Insure that everything on your résumé is relevant to the job for which you are applying.

 

SPECIAL & UNIQUE

 

Your résumé should present information that clearly differentiates you from everyone else.  What is it about you that only you can offer?  What makes you special and unique?  What makes you stand out?  What separates you from the rest?  What are your distinct attributes?  In what ways are you better than your competition? Employers aren't looking for the "same old résumé."  They're looking for something special. To grab attention and spark interest, your résumé must go beyond the standard, typical, everyday, "run-of-the-mill" résumé.

 

JOB APPLICATION

 

Your résumé can be used to supplement information when filling out a job application.  Sometimes it can even replace a job application.  However, do not mistake your résumé for a job application.  A job application contains all the information about you that the employer wants to know.  Your résumé contains all the information about you that you want to tell the employer.  A job application is a standard official form created and controlled by the employer.  Your résumé belongs entirely to you.  Your résumé is your opportunity to present yourself to the employer in your own words, on your own terms, in your own way.  While your résumé and the job application should not contradict each other, it is important to remember that they greatly differ in the way they present you on paper.  You have complete control over the information in your résumé.  You may describe yourself in any manner you see fit.  You may include or exclude any detail you choose.

 



n Reference Letters
n Follow Up / Thank You Letters
n Virginia Tech: Follow Up and Thank you Letters
n Resume Resource: Sample Letters
n About: Thank You Letters
n Quint Careers: Thank You Letter Samples
n Career Journal: Thank You Letter Tips
n About: Reference Letters
n Business Balls: Reference Letters
n NACE: Writing Reference Letters
n NACE: Sample Faculty Reference Letter
n About: Reference Letter Template
n About: Resignation Letters and Other Employment Letters
n Write Express: Acceptance Letters
n Types of Job Search Correspondence
n Letter Expert
n About: Letters, Templates, Samples and More

 


 

RÉSUMÉ WRITING

 

Résumé writing is a fine art.  It is not an exact science.  There is no one right way to write a résumé.  There are no rigid rules for designing or composing a résumé.  You should feel comfortable and confident that you can develop a résumé that is right for you...  one that is tailor-made for you...    one that fits your own specific background and goals.

 

You don't have to brag, lie, misrepresent or exaggerate on a résumé.  But, you should describe your experiences and abilities as positively as possible without excessive use of superlatives.   Avoid cuteness, cleverness, and fluff.  Don't ever say anything negative or irrelevant about yourself on a résumé.   Every element of your résumé must say:  "I am a perfect match!"

 

A résumé is an individually designed document that summarizes your background.  It is intended to demonstrate your fitness for a particular position.  It focuses on the most attractive and applicable aspects of your background.

 

Tell what you've learned, not only what you've done.  Provide evidence of skills, not just duties. Make sure your resume conveys what you have to offer, not what you want. Don't tell employers what you're looking for, tell what contributions you can make.

 

Write clearly and simply.  Stay away from fuzzy, vague or sweeping statements.  Use short, direct, active phrases, rather than complete sentences.   The collective descriptions of duties, responsibilities, achievements and skills should read like a list rather than a paragraph.  Statements should begin with action verbs.  Avoid personal pronouns  (I...  me...   my...).  Keep it brief.  One page resumes are best.

 

Make it visually appealing.  Use wide margins and easy-to-read type. Balance blocks of text with white space.  Be consistent in your format.

 

Support all activities and responsibilities with results and accomplishments.  Emphasize transferable skills.   Use statistics and quantifiable language whenever possible.  Use positive language.  Keep the reader in mind.

 


GRAD SCHOOL PREP n CAREER PLANNING n CAREER EXPLORATION 
COLLEGE TO CAREER TRANSITION
n JOB MARKET n JOB SEARCH
RESUME WRITING
n INTERVIEW PREP n WORKPLACE ISSUES


 

 


ALABAMA CONNECTION   n   CONNECT TO THE ALABAMA CIRCUIT