student edition: how to write an awesome resume

During our recent National Career Week event, we shared resume writing tips that make your resume more attractive to employers. With school now back in full swing, we got to thinking: what do you need to know about perfecting your resume as a student? Here are some resume writing tips that students should keep in mind when writing a resume:

student resume writing tips

experience isn’t everything

At this stage in your life, you probably haven’t built up an extensive work history. (If you have, congrats, you’re ahead of the curve and probably already know your way around a resume by now!) Though it might seem like having a resume is pointless, if you don’t have substantial work history, the truth is there’s still plenty to share about yourself.

The whole point of a resume is to show that you’re the right fit for the job you’re applying for. Chances are you’re not applying for roles that require a lot of prior experience. For the roles that are on your radar at this stage – internships, part-time and entry-level, etc.  – employers will be less focused on prior work, and more on the skills and attitude you bring to the table. So how do you showcase these?

share your skills and strengths

No matter who you are, you have some strengths and marketable skills, we promise. What exactly constitutes a marketable skill? Anything that you think will convince potential employers that you’re the right person for the job.

Think about what you’re best at in school. Here are a few examples of transferable skills you learn at school that translate well in the workplace:

  • Are you a math person, who’s great at working with numbers?
  • Do you excel at presentations in front of large groups?
  • Do you work well with others on collaborative group projects?
  • Are you highly organized and great at managing your time and course load?

include activities & informal experience & achievements

At this point in your career, a lot of your experiences outside of school probably include things like extra-curricular activities, volunteering, or informal jobs like mowing lawns and babysitting. These activities are great to put on your resume.

Remember, everyone has to start somewhere! These activities show you’re motivated and capable of balancing other important tasks with your school work. School-oriented achievements are also perfect to put on your resume. Have you won an academic award or participated in a project you’re particularly proud of? Are you a straight-A student? All these things offer potential employers insights into you and your work ethic and abilities.

use a template to get started

If you’re not sure how to go about creating a resume, there’s tons of student resume templates out there to help you figure out where to start. While there’s no shame in using a template as a basis to help you get started, definitely feel free to make it your own. A creative resume that communicates all the necessary information in a unique way will help you stand apart from other candidates.

don’t forget the basics

You’d be amazed how often people forget some very key elements on their resume. Whatever else you decide to include on your student resume, remember these 4 things:

  • Your full name
  • Your phone number and email
  • Your LinkedIn profile (if you have one)
  • Your education

try these resume writing tips

Whether you’re writing your first resume ever, or honing it for the hundredth time, there are some tried-and-true resume writing tips that always apply. Check out Randstad’s resume writing guide or watch the companion video with resume writing tips. Most of these tips will apply whether you’re 18 or 50.

have it proofed thoroughly

If there’s one piece of resume advice that we recommend above all else, it’s this: proofread your resume thoroughly, and ask a friend or family member to do the same once you’re done. Nothing ruins an otherwise good resume, than typos or other glaring errors. An un-proofed resume makes you look careless or sloppy and some hiring managers toss them without so much as a second glance.

interested in more job advice for students?

read more tips