Resources You'll Need
Take your first step towards your dream job! Download ECS Resume Samples and customize them to showcase your unique skills and experiences.
Make your resume stand out! Download our action verb list and apply these powerful verbs in your bullet points to highlight your accomplishments and impress potential employers.
Get a 15-minute review after creating your draft by visiting ECS during Drop-In Advising, or Resume Labs!
Before You Create a Resume
(1) Review the job description
- Identify the required and desired skills and qualifications by analyzing the job description.
- Make a list of the top ten keywords based on the position's responsibilities.
(2) Incorporate the Keywords
- Include as many of the keywords you've identified from the job posting.
- For instance, if you're applying to work as a software engineer, you may choose to include "Java" in one of your bullet points for a previous role.
(3) Identify your relevant skills and accomplishments
- Emphasize skills that you've gained that can be used in the position that you are applying for.
- Describe how you apply skills in your bullet points.
(4) Write descriptive action phrases
- Start with an action verb in your bullet points and diversity action verbs.
- Arrange the descriptive phrases in order of relevance to the position you are seeking.
- Avoid using "I" statements and articles ("the" or "a").
- Margins: 1'' recommended
- Length: 1 page
- Easy-to-read, such as Calibri, Arial, Tahoma, or Century Gothic
- Do not exceed 10-12 font size
- Bold section headings
- Italicize position titles to make important points stick out to readers
- Consistently using bold or italics adds visual organization
- Past experiences should be described in past tense
- Current positions can be described in present tense
- Avoid using any full sentences
On the top of your résumé include the following: your name, Illinois email address, phone number, LinkedIn URL (optional), and if applicable, any website that showcases work you've done (e.g., GitHub, online portfolio, personal website, etc.). Make sure it is listed on one line.
In this section list the degree(s) you are working towards (i.e., Bachelor of Science in ______________), associate degrees from community colleges, and any study abroad programs you have participated in. Do not include high school information unless you are a first year student.
This section is designed to quickly capture attention. Organize your skills in categories (e.g., Programming Languages, Software Applications, CAD, etc.). Remember to provide examples of these skills in your bullet points.
For each experience, include: Position title, Employer Name, City, State, Start Date-End Date (Month and Year). List paid and unpaid positions (past jobs, internships, volunteer positions, leadership experience that are both directly or indirectly related to the job you're applying for.
- Select from these title options:
- Professional Experience, Related Experience, Leadership Experience, Work Experience, Projects, Selected Projects, Volunteer Experience, Research Experience or Relevant Projects
Project highlights is a great section to focus on technical skills. Be sure to incorporate keywords from the “Skills” section in the bullet points. Include academic, personal and RSO projects .
Extracurricular Activities & Leadership
Optional: Relevant Coursework
This section is optional. If you include it, only select courses that you feel to be relevant to the position you are applying for, do not include 100-level math or science courses, unless relevant. (Tip: List them in 2-3 columns to save space!)