January 04, 2006

CollegeBoard's Four Must-Haves

The College Board recommends Four Key Elements that belong in the resume of every strong, but young, candidate. It's possible to get a good job just on the virtue of these items alone. That, while true, will get you a cup of coffee if you also have $2.90 already in your pocket. So don't forget the networking and relevant experience parts.
Four main themes you should always include in your resume, no matter where you're applying, are volunteerism, association memberships, computer proficiency, and knowledge of other languages.

1. Volunteerism

No matter where you're applying or what you plan to study in college, potential employers want to know you're a well-rounded member of society. Listing your participation in a program such as Habitat for Humanity or your weekly work at a local soup kitchen can definitely add some pizzazz to a resume short of work experience.

2. Association Memberships

It's also an added bonus for younger high school students to list any associations they've belonged to, such as:

* National Honor Society (NHS)
* National Art Honor Society (NAHS)
* DECA (Distributive Education Clubs of America; association of marketing students)

Juniors and seniors probably have more experience in this area, but never underestimate participation in group roles. This includes any other club participation at school or in your community.

3. Computer Proficiency

Let's face it, technology is everywhere. Knowledge of computers will most likely be a requirement for just about any job. List any and all experience you have with computers, naming the actual program names you're familiar with (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Photoshop, etc.)

4. Other Languages

The world is getting smaller and smaller, especially in the job market. Knowing a second or third language can put you at an advantage in qualifying for a job and will certainly separate you from other candidates

Of course, number 2 is important if you want to rely on networking for finding your next job.

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