A collection of tips, information,
and examples of résumés
2nd floor of Founders Hall
Tips for Writing an Effective Résumé
Writing Your Resume
It is important to remember that there are no “experts” on resumes. There are, however,
recommendations on how to write a resume, the format, and what to include. Based on
employers’ feedback and some research done by the Career Center, we have created general
guidelines to follow when writing a resume. The resume is your document and therefore
should be a reflection of you.
Your Contact Information
• Use a professional email account; using firstname.lastname@example.org is not appropriate in a
professional resume. Do not include hyperlink. To do this, right click on the web
address and select Remove Hyperlink.
• Be aware of the message on your answering machine/cell phone. Would you want a
future employer listening to your current message?
Design & Content
Your resume may represent your first contact with the employer, therefore the content and
appearance is critical. Create the resume yourself. Avoid using templates.
• Margins: Keep the margins even. Margins should be between .75 and 1 inch.
• Length: Keep it to one page, unless there is enough critical information for two full
pages. Some majors such as education will have two pages.
• Style: Use incomplete sentences. Do not write in the first person (i.e. don’t use “I”
statements). Avoid using abbreviations.
• Paper: Use good quality, 20#, neutral 8.5”x11” bond paper with high quality print.
Do not use paper with flecks or glitter because of poor copying abilities. The Career
Center sells resume paper!
• Font: Use a font size of 10-12 points. Choose a standard font that is easy to read
(Times New Roman, Arial, etc.) Do not mix more than two font styles. One is
• Format: Make it visually appealing and easy to read. Be consistent in your format
and use of bold, CAPITALIZATION, italics, etc.
• Tense: Verb tense should fit the situation. When describing current experience, use
the present tense. To describe past experience, use the past tense.
• Order: Within each category, all information should be in reverse chronological
• Presentation: Do not fold or staple your resume.
• Content: Generally, you should not include high school information or experience
beyond five years unless it is highly relevant.
-Educational Highlights -Accomplishments -Volunteer Activities
-Leadership Activities -Honors -Internship Experience
-Interests -Scholarships -Travel
-Presentations -Skills -Languages
-Training -Study Abroad -Qualifications Summary
-Technical Skills -Publications -Research
Transferable skills are skills that are applicable across several settings. Chances are that in
your part-time work experience, you have learned and practiced abilities that employers
value, such as:
-Leadership -Computer Skills
-Problem Solving -Work under pressure
-Time Management -Decision Making
-Customer Service -Bilingualism
Instead of just describing your job duties, highlight transferable skills. For example, in your
fast food position, did you display coolness under pressure, work with the team to
accomplish goals, provide excellent customer service, or demonstrate organization through
your work habits?
Have your resume critiqued! Stop by or call to make an appointment!
Also check out other services we provide:
Interview assistance • Job Listings • Resource Library • Workshops • Fairs
What’s on your space?
You already submitted your resume and you feel prepared for your interview. But have you
considered the information, pictures, and dialogue on your Facebook and Myspace
accounts? Chances are your account is being viewed by more than your friends and
classmates. According to one survey conducted by CollegeRecrutier.com, seventy-seven
percent of employers have searched the internet to find information about an applicant.
Thirty-five percent have eliminated an applicant due to the information uncovered online.
So, what should you do? Review your Facebook and Myspace accounts! How appropriate is
the content? If something is questionable, remove it!
A note about Optimal Resume…
Optimal Resume is available for current students only. If you need help starting your resume, the Optimal
Resume program can be a great way to begin. However, though it is very helpful, it is ultimately just a
simple computer program and does not have the skills that you have. Once you have finished an Optimal
Resume template of your resume, make sure you download it to a Word program (you can do this from the
website itself). Once you have done this, use this packet to help fine-tune your resume, particularly the
layout that Optimal Resume created. It may not be perfectly aligned or well styled until you have played
with it a little. If you need more assistance, feel free to drop by the Career Center for some human help!
Optimal Resume Guide
1. Go to the above website and click “Get Started” (link under login information)
2. Type in your Augustana e-mail address.
3. A random code will be sent to your e-mail; retrieve this and continue with login process.
4. Create profile and “Continue”. (If you do not have Adobe Flash Player, you will need to download this
from the provided link. You will also need to allow temporary pop-ups)
5. Login using the information you provided.
6. Click “New Resume” (link located on main box currently saying “You Have No Documents”)
7. Click “Start New Resume” and type in a short one word name for your response.
8. A new window will appear. Browse the instructions before clicking “Next.”
9. The first step is contact information; fill out and click “Next.”
10. As you continue the process, instructions are always provided at the top of each window.
Examples. A link for examples is often included. Use this or examples from any of our other resources
found online from the Career Center homepage.
11. When everything is filled out, you can “Preview,” “Check Spelling,” and finally, “submit.”
12. After submission, return to mail OptimalResume page. Click the resume you have just created.
13. From here, you can “edit” and “style” until your resume is the way you like it. You can preview your
edited resume at any point in the process.
14. When finished, download your new resume into a Word Document or PDF Document. Any final
changes you’d like to make are done easily in Word Document format.
Current Address Permanent Address
City, State Zip City, State Zip
OBJECTIVE What can you do for the employer? The objective statement expresses your interest
(optional) in a specific job or tells the reader about your career goals. You can also include the
actual job title and employer within the objective.
EDUCATION List schools (most recent first), degrees, locations, majors, minors,
and GPA (if 3.0 or higher). You may also include honors such as
Dean’s list (unless you choose to make this a separate category)
and/or study abroad experience.
RELATED You should include your jobs, internships, or volunteer work that
EXPERIENCE is most related to your area of study. List the name of the company, the location
(city, state) dates, and job title.
• Place the most important or relevant information in the first bullet.
• Use bullet points to describe what you did and how you did it, and positive
• Explain what, why, and how you performed the duties of your job in brief and
• Try to quantify results using numbers and percentages.
• Begin each statement with an action verb.
ADDITIONAL Use this section to highlight any other paid or unpaid experience
EXPERIENCE which is notable, yet not as relevant to your area of study or the job in which you are
applying. Highlight transferable skills (communication, customer service,
organization, teamwork, time management). You may also include civilian, military,
or part-time employment. Highlight these experiences more briefly than your
HONORS & Highlight your co-curricular activities, leadership roles, and
ACTIVITIES honors/scholarships that you have been awarded during your time at Augustana.
Focus on your accomplishments. If you do not have activity experience, you may
want to explore ways to get involved in your community.
SKILLS Do you have special computer or language skills? This is a section for you to
highlight skills that will make you more marketable to the employer. You may list
computer skills as follows:
-MS Excel -PowerPoint -Access
-QuarkXpress -Illustrator -Photoshop
Current Address Permanent Address
City, State Zip City, State Zip
Joe Johnson, Ph.D.
Vice President of Marketing
1111 Augustana Drive
Anytown, IL 11111
Sue Swan, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology
639 38th Street
Rock Island, IL 61201
543 21st Street
Jones, IL 11111
123 East Avenue email@example.com
Jimmytown, IL 11111 (555) 123-4567
To obtain the position of Human Resources Intern at Franklin, Inc.
Bachelor of Arts May 2009
Augustana College- Rock Island, IL
Sales Associate August 2006-Present
Jack’s Clothing Store Davenport, IA
• Provide excellent customer service by effectively addressing customers’
concerns and complaints.
• Trained two employees.
• Responsible for opening and closing the store.
• Handle customers’ transactions and counted the money at the end of the shift.
• Received recognition from store manager for Sales Associate of the Month.
Server September 2005-August 2006
Burger Time Rock Island, IL
• Ensured customer enjoyment of the restaurant’s food and atmosphere.
• Maintained cleanliness throughout the restaurant at all times.
• Utilized suggestive sales technique to increase appetizer and beverage
consumption by 23% in one month.
Writer September 2005-May 2006
The Observer, Augustana College Rock Island, IL
• Edited news and features using Associated Press style.
• Wrote a weekly column on the happenings on and around campus.
• Developed relationships and partnerships with area businesses and media
to promote newspaper.
Homecoming Club (2005-present)
• President (2006)
Men’s Soccer (2005-present)
Political Science Club (2006)
Honors and Awards
Dean’s List (7 terms)
Most Valuable Player for Men’s Soccer (2007)
Presidential Scholarship (Full tuition)
Current Address: 123 West Street Rock Island, IL 61201 555-555-1234
Permanent Address: 890 Parker Avenue Anytown, IL 45678 firstname.lastname@example.org
Augustana College, Rock Island, Illinois May 2008
Bachelor of Arts, Accounting major, English minor.
English Department, Augustana College, Rock Island, IL August 2007-present
• Create worksheets to accompany video presentations for class
• Generate the “What’s Happening” Newsletter each week
• Maintain office order by performing general clerical duties
• Address questions of students, faculty, and parents in order to meet their needs
Burg & Burg Accounting, Teetown, IA May 2007-August 2007
• Provided timely and high-quality services and work products that exceeded client expectations
• Established client relationships and demonstrated knowledge of client business
• Built on technical competence by keeping up to date on trends, developments, and technical
authorities and applied them to moderately complex situations
• Demonstrated professionalism through a positive and cooperative attitude and by maintaining the
confidential and proprietary nature of client relationships and related work products
• Contributed to the overall success of the team by developing a thorough understanding of
methodologies and tools to enhance service delivery
• Challenged traditional procedures used in the past and attempted to find new and more effective
Joe’s Barbecue Shack, Terra, IA September 2006-April 2007
• Greeted customers as they arrived
• Assisted waitresses when they needed extra help
• Worked as part of a team to provide the best dining experience possible
Accounting Club (2006-present)
Habitat for Humanity (2006-present)
Augustana Symphony (2005-present)
Intramural Basketball (2005)
1234 Ann Drive • Rock Island, IL 61201 • (555) 555-1234
Augustana College, Rock Island, IL
Bachelor of Arts degree. Spanish major.
European Term. Salamanca, Spain
Study abroad experience.
May 2006-June 2006
Student Assistant. (August 2007-present)
Bremer House. Augustana College, Rock Island, IL
• Assisted History Department faculty with routine office procedures.
• Created Access databases for departmental surveys.
• Planned and organized speaker series.
Intern. (May 2007-August 2007)
Global International. Des Moines, IA
• Worked with the Immigration Manager and Caseworkers to assist clients in filing Adjustment of Status,
Citizenship, Employment Authorization, Family Petitions, and other applications.
• Assisted with the translation of documents and/or written testimonies.
• Tracked processed applications on client data spreadsheet.
• Conducted intake interviews for new clients.
• Issued receipts and collected payments from clients.
• Acted as contact for clients regarding the status of their pending immigration applications.
• Assisted in the development of outreach efforts and efficient office systems.
• Performed miscellaneous administrative duties (mail, telephone, fax, copy machine).
Hostess. (September 2006-May 2007)
Guadalajara Restaurant. Altoona, IA
• Opened and closed the restaurant every other weekend.
• Responsible for counting the money in the cash register.
• Efficiently handled customers’ transactions.
• Addressed customers’ needs and complaints.
Habitat for Humanity. Assisted in the construction of two homes in the Des Moines area. (2006-2007)
Banquet Server. Served Thanksgiving dinner to families in need. (November 2006)
Tutor. Helped students at East Middle School with reading and writing. (2005-2006)
Treasurer of Spanish Honor Society. (September 2006-May 2007)
Dean’s List. (All terms)