RESUMES AND REFERENCE LISTS Back
In this session, participants will learn the basics of creating a resume.
- College and Career Prep
By the end of this session, participants will be able to:
- Identify the characteristics of an effective resume and various sections found in a typical resume.
- Create a resume and reference list.
- Sample Resume Template activity sheet—make a copy for each participant
- Sample resumes from the internet
- Computers with word processing software
- Internet access
Text in italics should be read aloud to participants. As you engage your post in activities each week, please include comments, discussion, and feedback to the group relating to Character, Leadership, and Ethics. These are important attributes that make a difference in the success of youth in the workplace and in life.
Two Truths and a Lie
Have participants say three things about themselves. Two should be true and one should be a lie. Have the other participants guess which item is a lie and give their reasoning.
Creating a Resume
Tell Explorers: A resume is a brief summary of your work experience, skills, achievements, and interests. It is usually submitted to an employer with a cover letter and a job application, if applicable. Your resume is your advertisement. It gives employers their first impression of you. It offers a quick snapshot of important facts about you. These facts help employers decide if they want to interview you. One page is the typical length for high school students. If you are having trouble filling a page, you might consider including your references at the bottom.
There is no one correct format for your resume. There are many books available with sample formats and a variety of resources on the internet. Choose a format that reflects your personality and is appropriate for the job you are seeking.
Lead a discussion about the following sections that should be included on resumes.
Heading—Include your full name, permanent address, phone number, and email address. Some people will list their home phone number and others will list their cellphone number. Do not include personal information such as your age or birthdate. Your email address should be simple and professional, such as your name.
Skills—This is where you list six to eight hard or soft skills and abilities. You need to catch your reader’s attention.
Education—In this section, you will list your most recent education, most likely the high school you are currently attending. If you have been accepted to a college, that should be listed first. Consider listing classes related to the type of job you are seeking
Work Experience—Include all full-time, part-time, and seasonal work experience. Some individuals might need to include babysitting or list a person for whom he or she has done odd jobs. Beginning with the most recent, list the jobs you have held, as well as your responsibilities at each. When explaining your responsibilities, begin each sentence with an action verb such as “planned,” “trained,” “assisted,” etc. Search the internet for more examples. If you don’t have work experience, list volunteer or community service work you have done.
References—You should have three references. For most individuals, these will be listed on a separate reference page. References are people who know you, can answer questions about you, and are willing to recommend you for a job. Examples include teachers, coaches, club leaders, religious leaders, neighbors, and former employers. Before listing someone as a reference, make sure you have asked the person if it is OK to do so.
A resume is flexible. You might also consider including some of these sections if appropriate: Volunteer Experience, Community Service, Honors and Awards, Clubs and Activities, Achievements, and Athletics.
Here is some more information Explorers should keep in mind when creating or updating a resume:
- Make your resume easy to read or scan.
- Do not use pronouns such as I, we, he, or she.
- When describing your work experience and achievements, use verbs like “organized,” “led,” and “performed.”
- Summarize rather than writing in sentences.
- Be sure to include dates for all achievements and activities.
- Proofread, proofread, proofread.
Pass out the Sample Resume Template activity sheet and have each Explorer create a resume, taking into consideration the information from the discussion. The sample template is provided to make this easier. Note that numerous resume templates are available in Microsoft Word.
Each Explorer should proofread his or her draft resume, paying close attention to the formatting, and should have the Advisor and several other adults review it in order to provide suggestions for improvement.
Some sample questions are below. They are designed to help the participants apply what they have learned to their own interests. You are welcome to use these questions or develop your own questions that relate to your post or specific focus area.
- What is the importance of having a resume at this point in your life?
- How can you utilize your resume when applying for a job?
- Is there anything that you need more information on or were unclear about?
- Why is this topic important?
ADVISOR AND OFFICER REVIEW
After the meeting, address the following:
- Identify what was successful about the meeting.
- Identify what needed improvement.
- Schedule an officer and Advisor planning meeting to prepare for the next post meeting or activity.
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