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How to Write Resumes for College Admissions Boards

by Barbie Carpenter , Demand Media

    Students applying to college must submit a variety of materials to the school, ranging from high school transcripts and standardized test scores to letters of recommendation and personal statements. In addition, many colleges want to see the applicant’s breadth of experience listed in a resume. For example, Florida State University requests a resume that reflects extracurricular activities, community service work, employment history and awards. A resume allows students to showcase their background and skills in a way that transcripts do not. Therefore, it is important that students submit a well-written resume that highlights why they are prepared to succeed in college.

    Step 1

    Include your contact information. At the top of your resume, list your full name, home address, phone number and email address.

    Step 2

    List your education and educational achievements. Precede this section with the subheading “Education,” and list your high school name and your expected graduation date. Include your cumulative grade point average as well as any other educational statistics, such as your class rank.

    Step 3

    List any programs that you participated in during high school. If you took a course at a community college to advance your knowledge in your favorite subject, list that here. Florida State University suggests listing programs like University Outreach or Outward Bound here as well.

    Step 4

    Provide any work experience. Although high school students typically do not have a great deal of work experience, you should include any jobs you worked during your high school career, listing the name and address of the company, dates of employment and your title. Then, list your responsibilities, focusing on the skills you developed on the job, as the Purdue Online Writing Lab suggests. For example, if you worked as a server at a restaurant, highlight your customer service experience and ability to handle multiple tasks at once.

    Step 5

    List relevant extracurricular activities. List any clubs or sports you were involved in, particularly those in which you held a leadership role. Saint Ignatius High School in Cleveland, Ohio, warns its students not to include strictly social extracurricular activities. If you volunteered for a community organization, list that here as well.

    Step 6

    Include honors and awards. If you’ve made the honor roll or received an award for outstanding academic or athletic achievement, include that information in this section.

    Step 7

    Proofread your resume. Once you have your profile on paper, take a step back, and read your resume for proper grammar, punctuation and spelling. Trinity College says that your resume should be clear and concise without using complicated or confusing words, so revise any verbose phrases.

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    Tips

    • Keep your resume to about one to two pages. Florida State University requires its applicants to submit a resume of no more than two pages, and the Purdue Online Writing Lab says that resumes should be “no shorter than one full page and no more than three pages.”
    • Have a parent, teacher or guidance counselor read over your resume before you submit it with your application. They can help you pinpoint any errors or gaps in information.

    About the Author

    Barbie Carpenter worked as a technical writer and editor in the defense industry for six years. She also served as a newspaper feature page editor and nationally syndicated columnist for the Hearst Corp. Carpenter holds a Bachelor of Science in journalism from the University of Florida and a graduate certificate in professional writing from the University of Central Florida.

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