How To Make A Resume For Engineering Students

Purpose

Also referred to as a Curriculum Vitae (CV), your resume is your own personal marketing tool. The goal of a resume is not to get you a job; it’s to get you an interview. This can be a tall order considering most resumes get no more than 30 seconds of a recruiter's time. It’s your job to make sure that your resume stands out among the hundreds of others on that person’s desk. The key to accomplishing this relevancy is not by showing what you have done in the past, but highlighting what you can do for a potential employer in the future.

How To Make A Resume For Engineering Students

General Guidelines

Although the following are guidelines for writing a compelling resume for engineering students, the skills needed to write it apply to the engineering profession as well (i.e. precision, professionalism, error-checking, etc.). Sticking to these guidelines will demonstrate your use of those skills to potential employers.
  • Your resume is your first impression to a potential employer. Make sure it is a good one.
  • Read each job description carefully. Then customize your resume to highlight your experiences that match the requirements, as well as skills that meet or exceed those needed for the position.
  • Create a resume bursting with accomplishments, not just listing job duties.
  • List information in reverse chronological order, with the most recent first.
  • Use clear, concise, and professional language.
  • Be honest.
  • Avoid inconsequential information like interests or hobbies.
  • Keep negative information (job losses, etc.) off the resume.
  • As a student, you should be able to fit your resume on one page. Use bullet points instead of full sentences to save space.
  • Be 100% absolutely sure that there are no spelling or grammatical errors.
  • Do not send a photo.
  • Ensure that the document displays well on a PC as well as on paper.
  • Have at least one other person review your resume before submission.
  • When you finish your resume, put yourself in the hiring manager’s shoes. Would you hire you?

Format

Every resume you submit should be carefully customized to fit the specific position you are applying for and may change the way you choose to present the following information. Therefore, you may choose to name the categories to align with the job description or to list the most relevant or unique information about your qualifications first. Name/contact information – Make your name stand out with bold text, a larger font size and/or capital letters. Applicants often use a middle initial to appear more professional. List accurate address, phone, cell phone, and e-mail address. Objective or summary – Briefly indicate how you see yourself succeeding in the desired position, meeting both company and personal objectives. Be sure your objective aligns with the job description. Instead of an objective, you may choose to summarize key contributions you can make to an employer given your qualifications. The intention of this area is to pique the interest of the hiring manager so be very specific and make sure each word adds value to the statement. Education – List educational institution(s) including degree, major and/or minor, year of graduation, and GPA for each. If you earned an academic honor, it is a good idea to list it here. Coursework – If you lack experience, listing descriptive names of upper level engineering classes will help describe your training. Licenses – List any job-related licenses you have or are pursuing here. Experience – List all relevant work, internships, or volunteer activities that contribute to your practical engineering experience. Include name of organization(s), location and dates of employment. For each organization, use action words to list project work, relevant skills, experience, and accomplishments that will relate to the competencies needed for the job you seek. Skills – List relevant skills here including computer and professional skills that will contribute to success. Honors and/or Activities – Include extra-curricular activities, volunteer experience that doesn’t directly relate to engineering, athletics, social or professional organizations, and any recognition, honors, or awards you have received. References – List references on a separate page and include salutation, name, title and preferred contact method. Be sure to get permission from each reference before listing their name. Photo Credit: Bigstock

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