Resume 101 for Teens and Young Adults


Basic Features of a Beginner Resume

  • Use a centered header of name, address, cell number (make sure your mailbox recording is professional).
  • Add an email address. Use a professional sounding name (no cutesy addresses like:!!) – link the professional email to your main email - you will miss important emails if it isn't linked to an email you check regularly.
  • Under the main header, use a standard resume layout - you can find these on the web.I DON'T recommend using a resume builder app - you will be forever beholden to the app and the format and mentors may have difficulty editing and reviewing the text. MS Word or and Open Source document format gives you the biggest flexibility.
  • Your first section should be ACADEMICS under which you list your most recent schoo/collegel first working backwards to your high school(s). Include a short list with bullets that showcases key classes where you did your best, academic activities like Key Club or photography, academic awards, and if strong, GPA and any standardized test scores of note.
  • The EMPLOYMENT section comes next (unless your child hasn’t held a job yet – at which point get them a yard work, dog walking, pet or babysitting gig, stat!). List the jobs chronologically, most recent job first, and include 3 bullets maximum per job with a focus on quantifying accomplishments (Note: if your child works a number of hours in their job(s), this section can be listed before ACADEMICS).
  • EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES go last – again, make the bullets in this section accomplishment oriented. Bullets can be listed chronologically, or grouped under italicized sub-headers such as Sports, Theater, Music, Scouts etc.
  • Lastly, if there is room, add a one-line section under the header HOBBIES. Things like cooking, Fantasy Football, Magic the Gathering, fiction reading can go here and will often help the resume recipient connect to some of your child’s deepest interests.
  • Parent and child should write this document together then review it several times over the course of two weeks to have the best chance of correcting typos and adding missing activities.