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Perfecting Your Resume in Nine Steps

Updated: May 6, 2021

Crafting the perfect resume takes time and effort...don't worry... we are here to help.

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Download a resume sample by clicking the button below to follow along!

John Doe Resume Template
Download PDF • 181KB

Before you start here are some general pointers...

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  • Throughout your resume use easy to read font like Times New Roman, Arial, Open Sans, Helvetica, Georgia, etc. Just make sure to use only one font! Do not change it up!

  • Overall, you want your resume to be about one page, but two pages is okay. The rule is one page per degree.

  • Your resume should be crafted to the position you are applying for.

  • NEVER lie on a resume.

  • Think about transferable skills when crafting your resume.

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Step 1: Header


  • Use a larger font size (e.g. 14pt) to make your name stand out. For the rest of your resume stick with 12pt or 11 pt.

  • A mailing address is not required on a resume, but if you do add it make sure to list it like 2222 Made-up Road, Cleveland, Ohio 44113.

  • Use a professional email address, nothing like Try something with your first initial and last name.

  • If you have LinkedIn, add your url. However, try to have a pretty complete profile before you list it.

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Step 2: Objective or Summary?




Should contain 3 Elements: 1.) What position 2.) What environment 3.) Utilizing skills in

  • Use an objective when you have limited experience in your field.

  • For example: A summer internship in a non-profit utilizing skills in communication and organization.


Summary paragraph or bullets; Describe in 2-3 sentences or 3-5 bullets the experience and qualifications you have that best support your current job or internship Key words or most relevant strengths, skills and knowledge areas: List 6- 9 most relevant skills and knowledge that you have gained from work experience or studies that directly relate to key requirements or key words listed in job descriptions

  • Use a summary when you have a significant amount of experience within your field.

  • A summary is used to showcase what you can contribute to an employer.

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Step 3: Education


  • Add your college education.

  • High school education needs to be taken off when you enter your junior year.

  • It is optional to add your GPA, but only add it if it is above a 3.0

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Step 4: Honors/Awards (optional)


  • An optional section.

  • Add achievements if they are relevant to the position you are applying for.

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Step 5: Relevant Coursework or Projects (Optional)


  • Use this section if you do not have related experience; It enables the reader to see what you have studied up to this point.

  • Leave out intro classes.

  • Leave out course numbers.

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Step 6: Skills/Abilities


  • Emphasize skills that are relevant to the position.

  • Highlight interpersonal (also known a soft skills) and technical and language skills.

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Step 7: Related Experience


  • This section is for any experience related to your major or career goal or; could be volunteer work or academic course projects which might not be paid.

  • Use accomplishment statements when possible.

  • Begin with an action verb. What did you do? How did you do it? Were there results?

  • Can you quantify the results with numbers or %?

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Step 8: Other Employment


  • This section is used for jobs unrelated to your goal.

  • Employers want to see that you have worked in some capacity.

  • Descriptions of these jobs may not be necessary depending on the amount of room you have.

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Step 9: Other Optional Sections

  • Campus Involvement

  • Community Service

  • Academic Projects

  • Professional Associations

  • Leadership

  • Volunteer Experience

  • Athletics

  • Membership Affiliation

  • Interests

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