Whether you’re in your first year or final year at CU, this is a great time to lay the groundwork for a successful internship or job search. You can begin with your resume - this is a professional document of how you’d like to be perceived in the work world. It’s the first thing an employer will use to consider whether to bring you in for an interview or not.

Your resume could be your only chance to convince an employer you are worthy of the position you applied for. Employers often spend only 30 seconds scanning a resume, so building one that is a compelling depiction of your skills and experiences can help grab their attention. Follow these quick tips to build a memorable resume.

Use strong action words

Start each bullet point with verbs that paint a vivid picture of your skills in action. Some action verbs that stick out to employers include:

  • Developed
  • Enhanced
  • Created
  • Analyzed
  • Managed
  • Accomplished

View this full list of action verbs.

Highlight your achievements

Your resume should detail experiences that show what you accomplished in your various roles. Give real-life examples of your accomplishments. For example, “designed lesson plans and collaborated with team to organize event.”

Share numbers

Employers love numbers. It shows that what you accomplished in your role can be measurable and verifiable. Using statements like “increased company Twitter following by 15% over six months” shows that you understand the importance of using performance metrics and the affect they have on a company.

Keep it short

Employers still prefer one-page resumes. A resume should be easy to read, so be concise when writing out your qualifications. Sentences should not exceed 20 words, and exclude the use of first-person pronouns (I, me, my) and articles (the, an, a). For example, instead of saying, “I assisted our customers with answering their questions and resolving their complaints,” you would say, “Assisted customers with answering questions and resolving complaints.”

Be honest about your work

You’d be surprised how many resumes stretch the truth or even lie about specific skills and experiences. Fluffing your resume with fancy words and qualifications will not get you very far, as the truth will eventually come out.

Proofread

Typos and improper use of grammar are not well received by recruiters. Go through your resume multiple times and check for errors. Reading it out loud or backward can help you discover typos. It also doesn’t hurt to have a friend or career development advisor help with a final read-through.

Share your resume on Handshake

Once you have your resume ready, upload it to Handshake to help complete your online profile. This is the online recruiting tool used by hundreds of employers with postings specifically for CU students. By having a public account on Handshake, you can be found by more than 14,000 employers around the world with internship and job opportunities.

Handshake can be a valuable resource in your search for an internship or job. It uses algorithms to inform you about recommended jobs, trending questions from other students and jobs popular in your major.  

Want to learn more? Meet with a career development advisor to get started on your internship or job search.