Writing an Effective Resume
Career Services
8 Kerr Administration Building
Overview of Career Services
• Individual Career Counseling
• Drop-ins
• Workshops
– Career Assessment Tools
Computer Lab
Mock Interviews
Career Resource Library
Career Fairs
• Beaver Recruiting
– Job Listings
– Resume Match
– On-campus Interviews
Co-op and Internship Program
National Student Exchange
Peace Corps
Equipment/Classroom Usage
– Flat Screen TV
– Digital Video Camera
Purpose of a resume
Resume formats
Sections of a resume
What not to include in a resume
Purpose of a Resume
• Introduction to employer
• Personal advertisement
• Get you an interview
Basic Formats for Resumes
• Chronological
– Reverse Date Order
• Functional
– Grouped by Skill Category
• Combination
• Curriculum Vitae (CV)
Components of a Resume
Necessary Information:
• Contact information
• Education
• Experience (tasks, skills learned)
Optional Information:
Course highlights
Computer skills
Foreign languages
• Honors/awards
• Volunteer work /
community service
• Activities/Interests
• Many more…
Contact Information
Address: Campus/Permanent
Telephone number
Email address
• Convey a match between you and the position
• Communicate what you have to offer
• Identify skills that will benefit the
• Tailor your objective to the job/field
“Seeking an internship with XYZ Corporation in
which I can utilize my proven leadership abilities
and recognized customer service skills.”
List formal education with the highest degree first
• Include:
City, State
Major title
Graduation date
• Optional Information:
Dean’s List
Grade Point Average
Exchange programs*
Dissertation or Thesis*
Honors, awards,
• Full-time, part-time, volunteer, practicum, co-op,
internship, clinical, and field experience
• List in reverse chronological order
• May use “Related Experience” section
• Need to include:
Name of employer
City, State, and dates of employment/participation
Position titles
Position description
Position Description
• Demonstrate achievements, knowledge,
skills, highlights, and responsibilities
related to the position
• Use action verbs: use past and present tense
consistently and accurately
• Break up large blocks of texts with bullets
Accomplishment Statements
Two parts:
– The results or benefits that came as a result of
your work. These results/benefits should be
stated in terms of the value added, and in as
tangible and quantified a manner as possible.
– The action you took to achieve those
benefits/results. (What steps you took or what
techniques you used)
Accomplishment Statements
• Benefits
– Much better awareness of the skills and abilities that
will be the foundation for your job search.
– Concrete credibility for everything you claim in the
way of qualifications and abilities. You will have
simple documentation of the value you can bring to an
– Greater confidence in presenting yourself to potential
employers. You will understand better that you are not
"asking for a job," but rather you are offering a
contribution to an employer.
Accomplishment Statements
Increased profits
Reduced errors
Reduced losses
Improved teamwork
Made things easier
Sped things up
Foresaw a problem
Found an easier solution
- Received an award
- Found a new opportunity
- Accomplished more with
the same
- Prevented a problem
- Provided new resources
- Developed a new
- Overcame obstacles
• "Saved $60 a year in service charges by proposing
and acquiring a checking account at a new bank
for College Council."
• " Instituted residence hall tutoring program that
increased average overall GPA from a 2.9 to a
• " Increased membership in ABC student club by
50% through creative advertising."
• "Presented training for new campus-wide email
system to approximately 30% of the student
Special Categories
Course highlights
Research awards
Computer skills
Foreign language
• Special skills
• Volunteering /
• Leadership activities
• Honors, scholarships,
• Activities, interests
Let’s Practice
• Please take a minute and write an
accomplishment statement using your own
educational and/or professional experiences.
Interests and Activities
Association memberships
Academic/social clubs
Athletic teams
– Include offices elected to and contributions made to the
– Select your interests and activities carefully
What NOT to Include
• Salary requirements or previous salaries
• Name or contact information of supervisors
• Personal information (e.g. birth date, marital
status, health status, picture, etc.)
• References - place them on a separate sheet
Note: if applying for jobs outside of the US, these
may not necessarily apply – do your research!
Points to Remember
Use vocabulary of your field or industry
Use concise phrases
Use numbers to quantify achievements
Avoid long paragraphs
Omit personal pronouns
Action verbs
Points to Remember (cont.)
• Use bolding, italics, and underlining to
highlight or separate sections
• Margins should be ½ inch to 1 inch
• One page length is standard
• Use only one side of the paper
• Laser print on quality paper
• http://oregonstate.edu/career/students/career
• Have at least three references
• Ask before using someone as a reference
• Give resumes to your references and keep them
informed of your progress
• Things to include on reference sheet:
– Your contact information (same format as on resume is
– Name of reference, company or organization, address,
phone number, and email address
A Strong Cover Letter
Targeted to employers and specific jobs
Promotes your abilities
Looks organized and professional
Enthusiastic and conveys interest
Clear and concise articulation of skills
Components of a Cover Letter
• Your contact
• Date
• Employers’ contact
• Salutation
• Introductory
• Body of letter: one or
more paragraphs
connecting your skills
to employer needs
• Conclusion
• Closing
• Signature, if in paper
Opening Paragraph
• Why are you writing?
– What position are you applying for?
– How did you hear of the opening or
Example: Dr. Anderson in the Anthropology Department at
Oregon State University recommended that I contact you.
I would like to apply for the archaeology internship
available in your office.
Middle Paragraph(s)
• Explain interest in working for this employer and
reasons for desiring this position
• Do NOT iterate entire resume; rather expand on
one or two areas that reflect relevant skills learned
• Emphasize skills or abilities that relate to the job
• Express confidence and enthusiasm
Final Paragraph
Persistent, businesslike closing statement
Indicate desire for a personal interview
Example: I will call you on [date] to discuss this career
opportunity with [name of organization].
• “Thank you” for consideration
Sign name
Type name
Cover Letter Tips
Address letter to a specific person if possible
One page only
Use industry “buzz words”
Follow through with employer
Let them know you have done your homework
– Say something flattering about the organization
(e.g.: “Energy Plus has an excellent reputation locally for
customer satisfaction, and I would like to become part of
your customer service team.”)
Good Luck!
Let us know how else we can help you!
Career Services
8 Kerr Administration Building

Resume Building Workshop