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Resumes

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Resumes

Appearance

Content

Before focusing on the appearance of your resume, you need to discern what relevant content (i.e. education, honors, coursework, projects, skills, experiences, and activities) to include, how to describe the relevant content, and what format you are going to use to market yourself on your resume. Once you’re ready with this, then you can focus on the appearance of your resume.

Proofreading

As you proofread, make sure you are looking for consistent formatting and consistent verb tense usage in descriptions. Write action verbs in past tense with the exception of current experiences. Proofread for misspelled words and grammatical errors. Do not rely solely on “spell check” to catch errors, because words may be spelled correctly but mean something different than you intended.

Page Length

Page length is usually determined by your relevant experience and the industry that you are submitting an application. Resumes for new graduates and entry-level job-seekers are often, but not always, one page. Most new graduates don't have enough relevant experience to justify more than a page; however, some do have lots of relevant experience that justifies a 2 page resume.  Additionally, some industries expect 2 pages, such as education and health. If you’re tempted to go to 2 pages, be sure there is enough relevant material to justify a second page.

Sending Your Resume

Electronically

For many applications, sending materials electronically is becoming customary.  When you submit a resume through email or other electronic format, send it as a .pdf file so that your resume looks the way you intended it to look when the file is opened. There are many free .pdf conversion programs that you can search for and download.

Paper

“Hard copy” resumes are still requested and good to bring to interviews, and you’ll use printed resumes at Career Fairs. When printing a resume on paper, choose traditional colors like white or off-white. Use the same paper for both your cover letter and resume. The Bookstore and Copy Center on campus both sell resume paper.