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How to make your resume stand out

It’s no secret that many people have competitive resumes these days. With more and more people going to college and getting internship/work experience earlier in life, the competition can be scary, huh? Not to worry though….the resume tips below will assist you in making your resume stand out in the crowd.

While the traditional resume tips are important to consider, it is also important to design your resume to best fit your career field, whether CREATIVE or SCIENTIFIC.

Creative Fields — Graphic Design, Interior Design, Fine Arts, Marketing, Advertising, Public Relations, etc.

1. Recognize your audience. Before designing your resume, you must first consider who your audience is. Depending on the company you are applying to, the person looking at your resume may not have a creative background. In this case, it is best to make the content well-organized and incorporate a tasteful accent of color. Make your resume stand out to someone who isn’t creative by nature by using a resume layout based off of a newspaper, magazine, Google search results, or Facebook profile layout. This will catch the viewer’s eye because it’s something they are familiar with, but it will stand out from the other resumes who chose a traditional format. On the other hand, if your audience consists of creative people, don’t hesitate to think outside the box and design your resume in an avant-garde way.

2. Reflect your personality. Make your resume memorable by reflecting your personality in the design. Fonts, colors, personal images used, and layout all work together to personalize your resume. One option could be to switch up the presentation of education and experiences by using a timeline as a visual, instead of simply just listing the information. In addition to having a creative layout and showing all of the relevant content, it is convenient to have a link to your portfolio website. This makes it incredibly easy for an employer to find and view your portfolio.

3. List your skills and awards. For people in the creative field especially,have your proficiency in applicable software and programs listed. This can be displayed through a 5-star system or by filling up a certain percentage of a whole circle, as shown below. Lastly, list any design awards or recognitions you have received. If you haven’t received any yet, there are a couple opportunities around campus, so check out the Art & Design Undergraduate Exhibition and the Westwood Exhibition. Contact to learn more.

Scientific Fields — Engineering, Physics, Computer Science, Chemistry, Industrial Technology, etc.

1. Have an organized resume layout. The best way to do this is to use the quadrant test. By dividing the paper into quadrants, you can ensure that you have an equal amount of text and white space in each box to create balance. Consider using columns as another way to create balance. Having a balanced resume will make it more visually appealing to the person reviewing your resume even if you aren’t applying for a designer position.

2. Use proper fonts. While this may seem like more of a creative thing, it is still just as important for all the technical folks to use proper fonts. Use a font that correlates with your personality. For example, if you identify yourself as being more sophisticated and sleek, use fonts such as Optima, Gill Sans, Futura, or Helvetica. These are all sans serif fonts that give off a modern vibe. If you are looking for a more traditional option, you could experiment with different serif fonts including Baskerville, Bodoni, Caslon, Garamond, or Times New Roman. Choosing the font that best represents your personality will allow the employer to get an accurate impression of you before your interview.

3. List all related accomplishments. As somebody who is in a scientific field, it is crucial that you display all of your accomplishments. This can include research studies, publications, patents, technical skills, licenses, and associations. While you may not have all of these items yet, you can start now by getting involved with associations. Go to BoilerLink to search for different scientific and technical organizations on campus. As you go through your undergraduate years, graduate years, and into your professional life, continue to be on the lookout for opportunities to apply for patents and conduct research studies. You never know what you might discover or accomplish!

Once you have designed your resume to best fit your career field, stop by the CCO so we can help you edit and get it employer ready! Drop ins are Monday through Friday from 10:00am-4:00pm.

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