How to Write a Resume With No Job Experience
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As many of my younger cousins and friends begin looking for jobs to fund their discretionary spending, it reminds me of a time in high school when I had no idea how to begin writing the very first resume.
If teenagers were to search for resume examples, they’d most likely come across documents filled with long lists of work experiences that they can’t reproduce on their own resumes. The result is a blank stare.
But, we all started somewhere and we can find noteworthy credentials from many aspects of our lives that isn’t directly relate to employment.
There Is Always Something
I thought I didn’t have much to put on my resume during high school but I remember having to cut out some parts so that everything would fit in one page. The most troubling part of the process for many students is finding things to fill the spaces.
Here are some things that will fit the bill:
- Education. For anyone that is still in or recently graduated from school, education represents a significant part of a resume. Make mentions of your major, minor, concentration, GPA and expected date of graduation.
- Related coursework. If you have any classes that may pertain to the position for which you are applying, putting them in the resume supports your candidacy for the job. This can include enrichment classes taken outside of school.
- Examples: financial accounting, child psychology, organic chemistry
- Volunteering and community service. This is the common prelude to a real-paying jobs because it is relatively easy to find volunteering and community service opportunities. It shows a selfless devotion to a cause and it’s very much like work without the paycheck.
- Examples: Big Brothers Big Sisters, American Red Cross, community park cleanups
- Computer skills. The Internet and computers will play an integral part of the future of any business. And luckily for all of us, such technology is becoming readily available to those at younger ages. All those hours on Facebook and Twitter may be valuable when you can tout your proficiency with social media tools.
- Examples: Microsoft Office Suite, Adobe Photoshop, typing speed, operating systems
- Interests and hobbies. The activities that you enjoy and the things that inspire you may align with the field of the job. If the work is in a field that you like, it means you are more likely to grow in the job position.
- Examples: photography, cookery, eBay
- Extracurricular activities. Any clubs, sports or organizations that you participate in shows that you are active. A position of leadership in any of these extracurricular activities is highly admirable.
- Examples: team sports, student debate club, school play production
- Awards, achievements and certifications. Show off any major accomplishments because they are recognized proof of your success. Certifications often require some sort of training or education with exams that test your proficiency, which shows you took the time and made an effort to complete such certifications.
- Examples: Dean’s List, valedictorian, CPR/First Aid
Making It Stand Out
Obviously, with a little brainstorming, it may be easy to come up with plenty of stuff to put down on the resume but that doesn’t mean it would be smart to do it. With any resume, you’d like to tailor the written credentials to the position you are applying for.
- Keep it relevant.
- Be specific and detailed.
- Make it result-oriented.
Allow someone who can provide constructive feedback to review your resume before submitting it with your job application. While this resume may be for an entry level or internship work, it is still important to make it presentable and coherent.
(Photo credit: Kristian D.)