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Resumes, Jobs and Job Hunting

Resumes and job hunting are important to obtaining employment and a great career. This page is dedicated to providing information on employment, jobs, resumes, employment services, career assessment, resume services, and job hunting services you need for after successful educational experience.

Education is important in today's world! An education, going from preschool to elementary school, high school, college, university and continuing education through online education for lifelong learning, contributes to your success and the success of the community within which you live and work.

Understanding the job hunting process and the services and job hunting strategies that are available is important in helping you find a job and career. Use the resources below to post resumes, assess your career, apply for jobs, job search, employment search, and other job hunting tips.


Resume Writing Tips

An effective resume is the foundation of every successful job campaign. Most students write their first resume when they are seeking internships or summer employment, but resume writing skills are equally important for seniors approaching graduation and alumni seeking advancement.

As most people know, the purpose of the resume is to summarize the key elements of your past experience that you would like employers to consider when you are seeking employment. Naturally, a resume needs to be revised periodically during your career to reflect changes in your qualifications. Keep in mind that a good resume alone won't get you a job; however, it can help you get an interview and influence an employer's perception of your skills and potential for a particular kind of work.

There are several standard formats for resumes, but most employers prefer the chronological format, which is outlined and illustrated below. A few students might prefer to use a functional format to call attention to particular skill areas. Additional information on various resume formats is available in the Career Development Center. The organization of the resume can be adapted as necessary to emphasize an individual's most outstanding characteristics. In general, however, the resume should include:

 

IDENTIFICATION DATA: name, address (or two addresses--present and permanent), and phone number(s) (including area code).

OBJECTIVE: a single phrase expressing the specific type of employment you are seeking and/or the principal skills you want to use on the job. Some people prepare two or more resumes with different objectives. Once you formulate a clear objective, you can use it almost as a thesis for the remainder of your resume; only information that supports your career objective should be included on the resume.

EDUCATION: basic details about your education, including college location (city and state), degree, date of graduation (or expected graduation), major, related course work and (possibly) G.P.A. Most college students do not need to include information about secondary school, but it is important to summarize education attained through community colleges, other colleges (i.e., transfer credits), and specialized training programs.

EMPLOYMENT: brief summaries of principle employment to date. Start with your current (or most recent) position and work backward. Include all employment relevant to your career objective in any way. Internships and cooperative experience can be listed either under employment or under education.

Provide the name of the employer, the employer's location, your job title, dates of employment, and simple verb phrases to summarize your main activities on the job (see "action verb" list). When ever possible quantify and qualify data with specific details and statistics that illustrate your potential.

ACTIVITIES/HONORS/SPECIAL SKILLS: additional areas that may be included on the resume if space allows. List all major activities and awards as well as any skills that are relevant to your career objective. These can show leadership, organization, critical thinking, teamwork, self management, initiative and influencing others.

PERSONAL DATA: such as height, weight, sex, and marital status should not be listed on the resume. Such factors are irrelevant and cannot legally be considered in employment decisions.

REFERENCES: and, in some cases, portfolios or transcripts can be listed as "available upon request" if you have enough room at the bottom of the resume. Have references, phone numbers, and business addresses ready on a separate sheet whenever you go to an interview.

Remember to keep all information on the resume concise and clear. A one-page resume is best, although people with extensive experience or advanced degrees may have to use two pages. Be scrupulously careful when you proofread; some employers will refuse to consider candidates who submit resumes with spelling or typographical errors.

ACTION VERBS FOR JOB DESCRIPTIONS

Verb phrases are the strongest way to describe previous job responsibilities. To write verb phrases, pretend you're telling someone about your job, beginning each sentence with "I. . . . " For example, "I supervise ten employees. I organize mass mailings. I arrange airline and hotel reservations." On the resume, you omit the "I" and use only the remaining verb phrases to describe the work you do: "Supervise ten employees. Organize mass mailings. Arrange airline and hotel reservations." Use present tense verb phrases for jobs you currently hold and past tense for former jobs. If you have any difficulty finding the right verbs to describe your work, choose from the following list:

accomplished             achieved
acquired                 acted
adapted                  addressed
adjusted                 administered
advanced                 advised
allocated                analyzed
applied                  appraised
approved                 arranged
assembled                assigned
assisted                 attained
audited                  author
automated                balanced
brought                  budgeted
built                    calculated
catalogued               chaired
changed                  clarified
coached                  collected 
communicated             compared
compiled                 completed
composed                 computed 
computerized             conceptualized  
conceived                concluded
conducted                conserved
consolidated             contained
continued                contracted
contributed              controlled
coordinated              corrected
corresponded             counseled
created                  critiqued
cut                      decreased
delegated                decided
defined                  delivered 
demonstrated             determined
designed                 developed
devised                  diagnosed
directed                 dispatched
distinguished            distributed
diversified              drafted
edited                   educated
eliminated               enabled
encouraged               engineered
enlisted                 established
ensured                  estimated
evaluated                examined
executed                 expanded
expedited                extracted
fabricated               facilitated
familiarized             fashioned  
finalized                focused
forecast                 formulated
founded                  gathered
generated                graded
guided                   handled
headed up                identified
illustrated              implemented
improved                 increased
indoctrinated            influenced
informed                 initiated 
innovated                inspected
instructed               insured
integrated               interpreted
interviewed              introduced
invented                 investigated
kept                     launched 
lectured                 led
made                     maintained
managed                  manufactured
marketed                 mediated 
moderated                modified
monitored                motivated
negotiated               observed
operated                 ordered
organized                originated
outsold                  overhauled
oversaw                  participated
performed                persuaded
planned                  prepared 
presented                presided  
prioritized              processed
produced                 programmed
projected                promoted 
proposed                 provided
publicized               published
purchased                recommended
reconciled               recorded 
recruited                reduced
referred                 regulated 
rehabilitated            related  
remodeled                repaired 
reported                 represented
researched               restored 
restructured             retrieved
reversed                 reviewed  
revised                  revitalized
saved                    scheduled
schooled                 screened 
selected                 serviced  
set                      shaped
screened                 selected
simplified               skilled 
sold                     solidified
solved                   specified 
stimulated               streamlined
strengthened             suggested
summarized               supervised
surveyed                 systemized
tabulated                taught
tested                   trained
translated               traveled   
trimmed                  updated
upgraded                 validated 
worked                   wrote

 

RESUME CRITIQUE LIST

  1. Does the overall appearance make an employer want to read it?

  2. Is the layout professional?

  3. Is the information organized so it is easy to read? (If the employer just skims through it, would their eyes pick up the key points?)

  4. Is it well typed? (Do not mix print styles. Important titles should be underlined. Use bold and capital letters only when appropriate.)

  5. Is it printed on good quality paper? (Remember to avoid colored paper; it does not copy well.)

  6. Are all words spelled correctly? (Have your resume proof-read by a valued colleague.)

  7. Is the writing style clear? (Do not use jargon.)

  8. Do statements begin with action verbs and communicate accomplishments and results?

  9. Are verb tenses consistent? (Have your resume proof-read by someone who is good in English.)

  10. Is the employment objective well-written and clear? (Tailoring your resume to the job you are applying for increases your success rate.)

  11. Is the major discipline explained in brief if it is one that the employers may not understand?

  12. Are employment experiences listed in reverse chronological order?

  13. Do your strengths stand out? Is it easy to get a clear picture of your qualifications?

  14. Does your resume stress accomplishments and skills more than responsibilities and duties?

  15. Does your resume sell your problem-solving abilities?

  16. Does your resume show volunteer work that might be relevant to the position sought?

  17. Did you account for all periods of time? (The employer will look for this.)

  18. Has irrelevant information been eliminated? Could your resume tell the same story if it were shortened?

  19. Can the same information be limited to one page?

SAMPLE FUNCTIONAL RESUME

         Sandra J. Kirksy

Present Address          Permanent Address:
11075 Grand River Ave    345 Maple Street
E. Lansing, MI 48823     Rosedale, MI 47389
(517) 351-7703           (313) 484-6965

Employment Objective     
  To obtain a position in public relations, editing, or
  research that utilizes my communication, analytical, and
  writing skills.        

Education
  Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI (September
  19xx to present).      
  Bachelor of Arts expected June l9xx. Major: English.
  Additional coursework in Advertising, Philosophy, and
  Mathematics.

Human Relations and Communication Skills
  Communicated in writing and by phone to many
  customers of the bank.
  Handled complaints and customer discrepancies,
  conferring with senior bank personnel in an effort to
  resolve problems promptly.
  Participated in numerous fund-raising activities.  
  Developed new funding proposals which obtained grants
  totaling $1,500.
  Represented departments in meetings and relayed 
  information and concerns to appropriate parties.
  
Administrative and Management Skills
  Gathered information to process customer accounts.
  Organized billing to maintain timely accounts.
  Improved training for incoming employees.
  Interacted with various personnel through interviews
  which enhanced overall efficiency of operations.
  
Other Skills Areas
  Strengthened communication skills by volunteering for
  special projects.
  Enhanced writing technique by gaining experience in
  different styles of writing, including press releases,
  public service announcements, and problem solving
  letters to customers.
  Acquired data retrieval and Word Perfect
  word-processing skills.
    
Work Experience
  The American Red Cross, Lansing, Ml (June 19xx -
  present, Public Information Intern.
  National Bank and Trust, Rosedale, Ml (Summers,
  19xx, 19xx, and 19xx).  Accounting/File Clerk
  Silver Lake Concession (Summers, 19xx and 19xx
  Cashier/Cook
    
Organizations. Honors. Awards
  Secretary, Michigan State University Advertising Club
  (19xx-xx)
  Acquired six Advanced Placement credits in English
  Rosedale High School Yearbook Editor, 19xx-xx 
  National Council of the Teachers of English (NCTE)
  nominee 

References
  Available Upon Request

SAMPLE CHRONOLOGICAL RESUME

 
          William T. Dunn

Campus Address:          Permanent Address:
123 East Shaw Hall       8030 Wild Oak Drive
East Lansing, MI 48825   Flint, MI 42909
(517) 355-1234           (313) 555-0897


Objective:
  A position in sales or customer assistance for a major
  grocery products corporation .

Education:
  Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824
  (September 19xx to present) .
  Bachelor of Arts in General Business Administration
  (March l9xx). Additional coursework in computer
  science, French, and Psychology.
  Michigan State University Overseas Study: Paris,
  France; July 19xx
  G.P.A.: 3.3/4.0

Honors:
  Dean's List -2 terms 
  Alpha Lambda Delta - Freshman scholastic honorary
  
Experience:
  Night Manager
    Good for You Grocery, Grand Ledge, Michigan
    September 19xx to present
    *Monitor inventory and supervise overnight stocking
    procedures
    *Maintain store security and ensure friendly, efficient
    service for all-night customers 
    *Increased store sales 20%
  
  Resident Assistant, Holden Hall
    Michigan State University Housing Programs, East
    Lansing, Michigan
    September l9xx to June 19xx
    *Coordinated social, cultural, educational, and
    recreational programs for a community of fifty-two
    undergraduates
    *Acted as a resource person, conflict intermediary,
    and counselor
    *Improved key programs with new systems

  Sales Intern
    Land O'Lakes, Inc., Minneapolis, Minnesota June
    19xx to September l9xx
    *Assisted in development and implementation of
    market survey
    *Made independent sales calls in local area

  Earned 75% of college expenses through above
  employment and additional part-time jobs as waiter,
  cashier, and news carrier.

Activities:
  Vice-President, Marketing Association, 19xx-xx
  Member, Student Alumni Association
  Intramural Basketball, l9xx-xx and 19xx-xx
  Volunteer Fundraiser, WKAR-TV, l9xx and 19xx

References:
  Available upon request.

 


 

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