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Prepair for a Job Hunt

Resumes

Your resume is one of many tools to help you express your interest in specific job and internship opportunities. The purpose is to provide a snapshot of your education and experiences, giving the recruiter a concise picture of what you have to offer. 

A resume generally has three sections: Education, Experience and Additional Information. In certain circumstances, a fourth Summary or Objective section may be included.

Types of Resumes

There are several basic types of resumes used to apply for job openings. Depending on your personal circumstances, choose a chronological or a functional format. 

Chronological resumes

A chronological resume starts by listing your educational qualifications (degree/s), work history, with the most recent listed first. Your jobs are listed in reverse chronological order with your current or most recent job, first. Employers typically prefer this type of resume because it's easy to see your highest qualification and your employment history. 

Skill Based Resumes

A functional resume focuses on your skills and experience, rather than on your chronological education and work history. It is used most often by people who have lots of relevant work experiences, or are changing careers and need to emphasize their skills and aptitudes, or who have gaps in their employment history. 

General Guidelines

 

Text Formatting

  • Font size should be between 10-12 points; choose professional and easy to read fonts. Margins typically range between 0.5 and 1 inch.
  • In most cases, your resume will be one page.
  • Bold, Italics and Bullets can be used in moderation to accentuate and break up content.
  • Resume should be visually appealing and easy to read quickly.
  • Consistency is essential; for example, if you choose to italicize your title and bold the employer name for one experience, make sure you do the same for all experiences.
  • Group your information in a way that places your most relevant and substantial experiences higher on the page to assure they are seen.
  • Avoid spelling and grammatical errors and do not use abbreviations or slang.

 

General Resume Tips

  • Keep your resume on one page, if possible (without using microscopic print). Two-page resumes are typically created by professionals with advanced degrees and a great deal of experience.
  • Use reverse chronological order (Your current status as club president should be listed before last year's junior day of service project). (Your current status as club president should be listed before last year's junior day of service project).
  • Keep the presentation (font, margins) simple and clean. A visually appealing resume makes a stronger impression than a dense, text-heavy one.
  • Send as either a PDF attachment (preferable because it can't be altered) or a Word document (if sending a Word attachment be careful because many organizations might have older versions of Microsoft Word).
  • Be sure your resume reads well on Smartphones (iPhones and Blackberries).
  • Be sure to proofread several times (read backwards from bottom to top) and ask others to proofread as well.
  • Be consistent – if you spell January in one section, don't use Jan. in another.
  • Do not use pronouns (i.e., I, my, me, our, we, etc.).
  • Resumes when presented in Lebanon may include personal information such as age, marital status, children, religion, etc. It is not the case in the USA and other countries, so make sure to check what is appropriate for the country to which you are sending your resume.
  • Do not include “References Available Upon Request" as this is understood.

 

Write an Effective Cover Letter 
Your cover letter is a writing sample and a part of the screening process. By putting your best foot forward, you can increase your chances of being interviewed. A good way to create a response-producing cover letter is to highlight your skills or experiences that are most applicable to the job or industry and to tailor the letter to the specific organization you are applying to. 

Some general rules about letters:

  • Address your letters to a specific person if you can.
  • Tailor your letters to specific situations or organizations by doing research before writing your letters.
  • Keep letters concise and factual, no more than a single page. Avoid flowery language.
  • Give examples that support your skills and qualifications.
  • Put yourself in the reader's shoes. What can you say that will convince the reader that you are ready and able to do the job?
  • Remember that this is a marketing tool. Use lots of action words.
  • Have someone proofread your letter.
  • If converting to a PDF, check that your formatting is translated correctly.
  • Reference skills or experiences from the job description and draw connections to your credentials.​​
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