What is a resume?

Resumes are marketing tools for your job search that clearly illustrate your real-world skills, experience, and academic preparation. A well-written resume is one of the main ways you can land an interview. So your main goal when writing a resume should be to make it easy for the employer to see that you’re the top candidate.

Parts of a resume

  • Contact information
    • Include your full name (in a slightly larger font than the rest of your resume), phone number, and email. Your address is optional.
  • Education
    • Include the full name of the school along with the city and state. List the full name of your degree (e.g. Bachelor of Science in Nursing) along with your expected graduation date (e.g. Anticipated 2021).
  • Experience
    • Describe work or internship experiences using bullet points rather than paragraphs. Avoid using first-person pronouns like “I” or “my.” Include the name of the company, city, state, and job title for each experience along with the dates you worked there.
    • We recommend either a reverse chronological or a functional resume format. The main difference is that reverse chronological resumes list your experiences in order starting with the most recent, while functional resumes prioritize your relevant skills. See below for examples of each kind of resume, and talk with us to decide which format is right for you. 
  • Other categories
    • Involvement/volunteer work: What organizations are you involved with? Do you have a leadership position? Do you volunteer in your community?
    • Interests: These can be used as conversation starters with employers. Make sure they’re appropriate for a professional environment. 
    • Skills: You may choose to list any specialized skills you have in a separate section.
    • Licensure or certification: This section would be especially relevant for teaching or nursing positions

Writing bullet points

  • When writing the bullet points for your experiences, use the following formula:
    • Action: Begin with a strong action verb (see below).
    • Context: Add relevant details to fully illustrate your position. Quantify your experiences when possible.
    • Results: Show what you specifically accomplished and why it mattered.
  • Examples of strong action verbs:
    • Planned
    • Designed
    • Developed
    • Coordinated
    • Organized
    • Led
    • Maintained
    • Collaborated

Sample resumes

Competencies for a Career Ready Workforce

Your next steps

Once you have a draft of your resume, we recommend having it reviewed by a member of the Career Services team. It’s always helpful to have someone else look at your work! Email a copy to or make an appointment with us on Handshake.

For grammar tips and writing help, contact the Tutoring and Learning Center.