“A resume is not an end in itself; it’s a tool to get the employer’s (scholarship committee’s) attention. You need a well-written, up-to-date resume to market yourself effectively.
An attention getting resume is one that conveys your personal brand - - - the unique combination of skills, achievements and abilities (and school and community activities) that show you are an outstanding candidate for the job (scholarship).”
This statement is taken from a website on how to “Write a Winning Resume.” I thought it summed it up well but I added what is in parenthesis because you will be writing a resume for scholarship purposes.
There are numerous tips for writing a resume but this sheet will address mainly what is needed this year for scholarships. You can use numerous formats depending on what you have done in high school.The must do’s
- Keep it brief (maximum two pages for a job seeking resume but should only be one page for scholarship purposes – resumes are typically reviewed in 10 – 30 seconds
- Proofread, proofread, proofread – one typo can send your resume to the trash
- A cover letter should always be included with a resume for a job but for scholarships you will have the personal statement or a specific essay included.
Basic elements of a resume:
- Contact information: name, mailing address, phone (house and/or cell), and e-mail address
- For scholarship purposes, also include your GPA – you can include your rank if you choose to do so – this information can be included in your personal data or in your education section.
- The sections used on your resume for scholarships will be different than the sections used on a job resume.
- The education section should include the honors and AP classes you have taken and the GPA could go in this section if you did not include it in your personal data.
- Other sections that you could have on your resume for scholarships are: awards, school and community activities (with leadership roles identified), work experience, and a skills or strengths section.
Formatting your resume:
- Use at least 11 font (some might request 12) with black ink on white paper. No colors, photos or fancy fonts!
- Format variations, such as font size, bold, italics, and capitalization, create visual appeal – use these tools but don’t go overboard!
- For scholarship purposes, format your resume yourself instead of using resume-building tools provided by online job sites. Many online forms require a chronological format.
- Begin your statements with action verbs – verbs should be past tense if you are no longer at the position or participating in the activity
- Stress accomplishments, not just job duties. Avoid phrases like “responsible for” or “duties included.” Use action verbs - - - tutored, organized, developed, etc.
- Mention transferrable skills (such as bilingual, computer skills, etc), especially if you have not done much but you want to show your potential.
- Include the number of years involved in an activity and/or the number of hours for volunteer activities.
- Check the little things, such as abbreviations. This is a formal document so you should write out certain things such as Street, Drive, Lane, etc. in your address. Also, you should write out clubs that might not be known by people outside of school, such as FBA should be written out, Future Builders of America.