When I tell my client, he/she needs to prepare a resume, I usually hear a groan followed by the question, why? My answer is always the same…Yes, it is a very important part of the overall application and not submitting one is a major mistake.
College applications provide you with the opportunity to highlight your accomplishments within your high school.
Many applications DO NOT provide you with the opportunity to highlight ALL your accomplishments, especially those done outside of school.
Many of you may sing in a choir outside of school, or play a musical instrument, either for fun or in a band. Some of you may perform in amateur theater productions or dance in a dance troupe. You may play on a club sports team and also be taking lessons in a foreign language outside of school. You may win competitions not sponsored by your high school. You get the idea.
Everything you do should be chronicled for later consideration in a resume.
It is easy to create a resume and maintain it, if you start it early in your high school experience, preferably freshman year. Keep a list of all your activities, both in and out of school, community service projects, religious institution functions, high school and club sports teams, summer activities, service projects to help those less fortunate, awards, contests won, etc. listed by year, starting with your freshman year of high school. Colleges are not interested in accomplishments prior to high school unless it continues over and positively impacts your high school career.
Over time your list will grow and you will be surprised at all your accomplishments throughout your four years of high school. If your resume is lacking accomplishments, you will easily see the deficits and have the time to make the necessary changes to round out your activities.
Resumes follow a simple format. A resume can be simple or very detailed, and the format you use depends on your activity level. Match the template to your level of activity and make certain it emphasizes college admissions and is not a template used for finding a job after graduating high school. You can find several templates to help you on the web.
Remember, colleges like to see you as a whole person, not just a GPA number and an SAT or ACT score. An outstanding resume will reflect the true you….and let you shine on your college applications.