What should you include in your resume when you're a student without a lot of experience? When creating a resume as a college student, it's important to emphasize both your work history (formal or informal) and your education.
For a student resume, you can also demonstrate your skills and abilities by including volunteer work, internships, and other extracurricular activities.
Review what to include in your resume, tips for writing a resume that highlights your qualifications, and download a resume template you can use as a starting point for creating your own resume.
What to Include in Your Resume
Here's information on what to include when you're writing your resume as a college student or recent graduate.
- Focus on education. Emphasize your academic history. Along with the name of your school and degree, include any achievements, such as a high GPA or any academic awards. If you have taken courses related to the job you’re applying for, list those as well.
- Include relevant jobs. Think about the skills and experiences required for the job you want. Include any internships or jobs where you developed these qualities. Even if your work experiences aren’t directly related, think of ways to highlight experiences you had that are relevant to the job you want. For example, you might include a former job as a cashier if it helped you develop customer service or leadership skills.
- Include extracurricular activities. Because you likely have limited work experience, emphasize any non-work activities. These might include clubs, sports, babysitting, volunteer work, or community service. All of these activities can show your skills and abilities.
- Include leadership experience. Have you held a position in a club, or been a captain on a sports team? Have you had any leadership responsibilities at your previous jobs? Be sure to list these experiences, as they show your ability to lead a team.
Tips for Writing a College Resume
Read below for tips on how to write a strong college resume.
- Use action verbs. Action verbs help show your responsibility. When describing your achievements, use action words like led, researched, and created to portray your experiences in an energetic way.
- Quantify when possible. Whenever possible, include numbers to show your achievements. For example, you might say that you worked the cash register at a store that managed $10,000 daily, or that you helped 50 - 100 customers daily at your retail job.
- Showcase the skills that qualify you for the job. Some skills are in high demand for employers hiring college graduates, and there are other skills that specifically relate to the job for which you're applying. Be sure to include the most relevant on your resume.
- Carefully edit and proofread. Proofread your resume carefully before submitting it. A clean, error-free resume will make you look professional. Ask a friend or family member to read the resume for you as well.
- Use a resume example. Use a resume example (like the one below) or template to guide your own writing. A resume example can help you decide what kind of content to include, as well as how to format your resume.
- Get help. If you need help writing your resume, check with your college career services office to see what resume assistance is available for students and graduates.
When you use a resume template, tailor it to fit your own experience and qualifications, and the job for which you are applying.
College Student Resume Template
The following is a sample resume for a college student. It includes education, work, and internship experience, awards, and achievements. Download the college student resume template (compatible with Google Docs and Word Online) or see below for more examples.
College Student Resume Example
Resume Sample (Text Version)
123 College Street
State College, PA 12345
Developing creative ad campaigns that meet clients’ goals
People person experienced at selling advertising and working on all aspects of successful campaigns.
ABC COMMUNICATIONS, New York, NY
SUMMER INTERN (June 2021—August 2021)
Partnered with design intern to create and execute two sell sheets, one print ad, and one postcard. Wrote radio script submitted with campaign proposal and assisted in other writing assignments.
- Awarded Best Campaign of competing teams.
123 COFFEE SHOP, State College, PA
SHIFT SUPERVISOR/BARISTA (May 2019—Present)
Train new employees, open and close store, handle sales, build positive customer relationships, design promotional fliers for company events, and help maintain store webpage.
XYZ RESTAURANT, Washington, D.C.
SERVER/HOSTESS/EXPEDITER/BUSSER (May 2017—August 2018)
Provided prompt service for more than 75 customers per shift.
EDUCATION & CREDENTIALS
STATE UNIVERSITY, State College, PA
Bachelor of Arts in Advertising; Minor: Spanish; GPA: 3.35, anticipated in May 2022
- Dean's List: Fall 2020, Spring 2021
- Awarded Best Advertising Campaign Proposal for Health Committee, State University, Spring 2019
- Professional in Human Resources (PHR)
- Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM)
Information Technology Skills:
- Microsoft Office Suite
- ADP / Workforce Now
More College Resume Examples
Review more resume samples and templates designed specifically for college students and graduates seeking internships, summer jobs, and full-time employment.
How to Get Your Resume Noticed
- Include your achievements. Your resume can include more than the jobs you've held. Include awards, extra-curricular activities, leadership roles, and other activities to boost your candidacy.
- Focus on your most relevant skills. Take the time to tweak your resume for each job you apply to, so the employer can see how you're qualified for the job.
- Get help with your resume. If you need more guidance, check with your college career office for advice on resume and cover letter writing.