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A student resume might seem like other resumes but its approach and content are slightly different. This type of resume is unique because you’ll likely have to focus more on education, volunteer work, relevant coursework and other extracurricular activities to prove to hiring managers you have the skills and qualifications necessary to land the job.
Even without experience, you can still promote your best qualities on a resume and impress hiring managers. It’s all about knowing how to structure the resume, analyzing the job description to see what the company is looking for, and making sure you’re getting your skills and talents across.
To help you write a professional student resume, our article will provide you with:
Whether you’re writing a high school student resume or a college student resume, the examples below are a great source of inspiration for writing your resume. This type of resume is unique because you likely have the education you need to succeed at a job, but not the work experience.
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There are three standard resume formats to choose from:
In addition to choosing the best resume format, it’s also important to follow the formatting tips below:
Follow the resume writing tips below to make a strong student resume. We also have a How to Write a Resume article with extra information and advice.
1. Header and contact information
Write your name and contact information in the header. You should also include your phone number and a professional email address where you can be contacted. If you have a social media account such as a LinkedIn profile or a portfolio of your work, you can link it in this section.
2. Resume summary/resume objective
Next, it’s time to summarize your top skills and qualifications. You can do this by writing a resume summary or writing a resume objective. They’re both a two- to three-sentence introduction to your top skills and relevant experience but a resume objective also emphasizes your career goals, making it ideal for students with no professional experience.
A resume summary is recommended for job seekers with more than three years of experience. You should highlight the skills and experience most relevant to the job. For example:
Hardworking high school student with three years of experience in customer service. Excellent communication skills, interpersonal skills and organizational skills. Proven ability to work in fast-paced environments, find creative solutions to problems and collaborate well with others to ensure customer satisfaction.
If you don’t have professional work experience, a resume objective — also known as a career objective — is a great way to talk about your key skills and tell prospective employers that you’re seeking employment. In fact, most students will have a resume objective rather than a resume summary because resume objectives emphasize your career goals, while resume summaries will quickly summarize where you’ve already been.
To get the immediate attention of the reader, create a powerful resume objective by summarizing relevant skills, any relevant experience, including internships or extracurricular activities and your academic highlights. Here’s an example of a student resume objective:
Diligent 4.0 GPA high school student seeking opportunity to apply leadership skills and basic data entry skills in entry-level jobs. High proficiency in written and verbal communication, able to work with large groups and learn processes quickly. Proven success juggling multiple projects at the same time and enhancing the quality of deliverables.
3. Skills section
Resume skills can come from anywhere, including your experience at school. Make sure you include a mixture of 8-10 soft skills, intangible traits that can be applied to any job and hard skills or technical skills which are abilities learned through training that are specific to a job, use bullet points to list them. For example:
If you’re creating your student resume following the functional format’s guidelines, you’ll likely have to create additional resume skills sections, such as:
4. Work experience section
The work history section in your student resume will depend on the format you have chosen. If you’re writing a resume using the functional format, this section will not include bullet points. However, if you’ve chosen the combination — or even chronological — resume format, use the tips below.
A big misconception is that relevant experience can only come from a professional setting. The truth is that you can obtain important work experience and skills from volunteer work, a summer part-time job, extracurricular activities and any internships.
To capture your relevant experience, be sure to:
Tutor / Oct. 2021 – April 2022
Riverside High School, Riverside, CA
There are different ways to write your education section.
High School Diploma | Expected in June 2024
Riverside High School | Riverside, CA
6. Additional sections
If you have relevant certifications, additional awards or training, you can create more sections in your student resume to list them. You can also do this to highlight volunteer experience or extracurricular clubs you belong to.
ResumeHelp has tons more resources with resume tips, job interview advice and everything you need to take the next step in your career.
A professional cover letter will take your job application to the next level. Use our resources to create a strong cover letter for your student resume.
Now that we’ve gone over our resume writing tips and resume examples for students, let’s do a quick recap of all the important points:
Many students don’t have a lot of professional work experience under their belts, so to stand out, feature volunteer work or internship experience that can grab the recruiter’s interest. If you have neither of these, focus on your skills section. You may even consider including extracurricular activities if they’re relevant.
This depends on a few factors. It’s not typically a good idea to include your GPA on your student resume, even for entry-level jobs. Hiring managers are usually more interested in the fact that you graduated than the fact that you got a 3.8 GPA. However, if your GPA was good enough to grant you special academic honors or achievements, like being part of the Dean’s List or graduating summa cum laude, you can add those special highlights to your education section.
Yes! Soft skills are a great addition to your student resume. It’s best to connect these soft skills to a relevant experience from school so the hiring manager understands how you demonstrated these skills in action. Instead of just listing “critical thinking skills” on your student resume, for example, include bullet points below your extracurricular activities showcasing that you used critical thinking skills during your student council meetings.
The first thing you should do before writing your student resume is to read the job ad to see what the employer is looking for. What are the requirements to get hired? What skills are necessary to do the job? Do you have most of the skills listed?
Next, tailor your student resume to the job. Include key skills mentioned in the job description, as well as similar responsibilities that are relevant. If you don’t have professional experience, you can mention volunteer work, after-school extracurricular activities, internships or even personal projects that helped you gain important skills and experiences.
The most important thing to remember is that, whether your experience comes from a professional job or an after-school program, it must be relevant to the job you want.
A student resume should include:
In this instance it’s better to just omit the school from your resume and start over. It’s important to remember that your schooling is only a small portion of your life and learning. Regardless of the grades you earned, when assembling your resume you should focus on your competencies and skills that align with the company you want to work for. Take the time to think about your best skills and list them out. This can help you approach employers with confidence and enthusiasm. Our Resume Builder can also help you by providing text suggestions that help employers see the person behind the paper. If you want to explain your experiences and career highlights in more detail, having an accompanying cover letter is a good idea.
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