More and more frequently college applications are requiring students to submit their resumes along with their application for consideration. Organizing a resume for school is a unique opportunity to highlight the opportunities a student has involved themselves in that define who they are. That being said, creating a resume can prove to be difficult for first-timers, please check out these free resources to help aid in the process.

Resume Quick TIps

  1. Your resume should not exceed one page
  2. Use a professional and consistent font
  3. Do not use a "free" resume building online (trying to actually get it for free ends up requiring more effort than building your own resume using Microsoft Word)
  4. Lead with the most relevant and interesting information
  5. Stand Out

Goof-Free Formatting on Microsoft Word (Steps)

Microsoft Word offers numerous resume layout options, but if you are interested in building your own from scratch follow the steps below:

  1. Open up a black word document
  2. Click Insert, then select Table and create a table with two columns. One column will be for activity information (the left) and the other for the locations of which that activity was performed (the right).Row count does not matter at this step because if you hit the tab key at the end of the row you are working on, Word will automatically generate another row
  3. Double click on the top part of your Microsoft Word document (where the header would appear), click the Insert tab then select Header & Footer, or click the View drop down menu and select Header and Footer. If done successfully you will see a cursor blinking in that space.
  4. In the now-created header is where we are goign to put your contact information. In the header we are starting with something easy, your contact information.
    Line 1: Name
    Line 2: Home Address
    Line 3: Phone Number
    Line 4: Email Address
    Remove Hyperlink that will automatically generate with a simple right click, hover over Hyperlink from the pop-up menu, and select Remove Hyperlink from menu items.
  5. Adjust the colum width on the table to approximately 85% coverage on the left hand column and 15% on the right.
  6. Fill out body of resume. Category headers should be a larger size font and bold faced to stand out. Remember: Activity information in the left column while location and date (for Education cateogy only) reside on the right.
  7. Category 1 Education:
    Left hand column: Title Header "Education"
    Right hand colun: Put in your GPA (if above a 3.0)
    Hit tab to generate a new row.
    Left hand colum of new row: (bold) High school name; (hit enter) add tid bit of information about your academic experience while attending the school, such as Academic ranking ("Graduated in top __% of class upon completion of Degree") or indicate your concentration, if applicable.
    Right hand column: (bold) Location; (hit enter) Month and Year of Graduation
  8. Category 2: ???
    The order of every category from here on out is up to you, except for the last category (Key Competencies and Skills). Base your order decision on what you think would appeal most to the admissions person evaluating your application. Suggested categories include: Leadership Experience; Extracurricular Activities; Work Experiences; and, Interesting Coursework.
    With every category item make sure to include a short description of your experience.
  9. Final Category: Key Competencies and Skills: Do you speak a second language? Are you good with computers? Can you use Microsoft Office Suite, Adobe Suite, etc.? Here is your chance to highlight some of the skills you ahve acquired that could be applicable to your college performance.
    This category requires special formatting: For a clearner look for this category highlight the entire row (both columns) and right click, then selet Merge Cells from the pop-up menu to create one column.
  10. Time to get rid of those pesky borders! Click on your table, an option for Table Design should pop up in your Word menu bar. Select Table Design and dlick on Borders and a drop down menu will appear. From the drop down menu simply select No Border. Voila! Your resume is now seamless and everything has equal spacing!
  11. Final Touches. Now that the bare bones of your resume are finished, it is time to adjust fonts and spacing, as well as adding any embellishments -such as a line between your header contact information and the body of your resume, and so on and so forth.
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