Continued from page 1
Also, don't assume that certain skills and responsibilities won't be applicable to job you're applying for. When listing your skills, list all of them. If you're applying for a receptionist position, but you have excellent writing skills, say so. If you're a graphic artist by profession but know Microsoft Excel like back of your hand, tell them that, too. When it comes to fundamentals like computer and communication skills, there's no such thing as overkill.
When writing about your education, it's always appropriate to toot your own horn. If you were student body president, say so. If you were a member of your high school or college Key Club, Chess Club, or Lawnchair Rewebbing Association (as I was), put it down. At very least, such information will arouse curiosity about you and show that you're a well-rounded person.
As far as your GPA is concerned, a high one is always impressive, especially when combined with a lot of extracurricular activities. However, even if your grades weren't always honor roll material, your experience and student involvement will always make that number look better than you think. If your GPA was pretty decent in your eyes, don't feel strange about revealing it.
In college, many of us (myself included) earned higher grades in our specific programs than in college in general. If that's case, you can list both averages separately, or simply state that your English department GPA was a 3.6. Most employers won't ask you to tell them any more than that.
As a general rule, a resume should be comprised of headlines (objective, experience, education, and skills) followed by bullet points, not long paragraphs. HR managers are busy, and they don't have time to sit and read a narrative. Give them information they want, but give it to them briefly, in plain English. In short, include anything that will make you look good to professional world without revealing too much personal information or telling a story.
Meredith Pond is editor and manager of DrNunley's http://CheapWriting.com. See her low-cost writing and editing services for students and business people. Reach Meredith at email@example.com or 801-253-4536.