Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the site alive. Read more.
It’s no wonder that entire classes and workshops are dedicated to the creation and revision of your resume. How is a person supposed to collect, organize and present their wealth of knowledge, skills and past employment experiences while simultaneously making their resume easy to read?
What skills did you learn from that internship last summer? Is a size 10 font too small? Serif or sans serif for Christ’s sake?!
If you don’t know where to start (or have started and are still feeling lost) check out these free resume tips from some of the best schools in the U.S. – those that make up the Ivy League.
For your convenience, I’ve provided a helpfulness score for each website based on a 1-5 scale with 1 being not helpful and 5 being very helpful. Let’s get started:
1. Dartmouth College
Dartmouth’s career preparation tips answer some common resume questions, including how to start a resume and how to organize your resume.
One of the most helpful resources the school’s Center for Professional Development offers is its Majors to Careers guide. Using this, you can look up careers that might be suitable for you based on your college major.
This resource will likely be more useful for recent or soon-to-be college graduates who are still figuring out what kinds of jobs they should apply for. If you already know what career you want to pursue or are looking for more advanced resume tips, keep reading.
2. University of Pennsylvania
UPenn offers an online resume workshop that anyone can view, in addition to various resume guides and resume tips broken down by focus areas. It also offers a checklist you can follow when writing your cover letter, as well as interview advice and field-specific career resources.
3. Cornell University
While somewhat more restricted than other Ivy League websites, Cornell offers many example resumes for you to reference. However, its OptimalResume resource is only available to students who have a valid Cornell email address.
In terms of publicly available information, however, Cornell does a good job of breaking down the different kinds of resumes and offers examples specific to major academic departments. This is a good place for finding organizational inspiration for your resume’s layout.
In addition to the many resume examples provided on the site, Cornell’s career services homepage provides insightful links to recent Cornell Chronicle articles that spotlight career advice, often from experienced professionals.
4. Brown University
Brown University provides a variety of resume, cover letter and social media profile tips for its undergraduate students. These tips are free to view on the school’s website, and offer valuable suggestions for anyone seeking to improve their resume.
Brown offers excellent advice when it comes to what verbs to include on your resume (broken up by career field — PDF ), line spacing tips, and how to optimize your LinkedIn profile.
5. Harvard University
Harvard has a lot of free resume tips that anyone can view. You can watch resume workshop videos or read the career center’s resume and cover letter tips. You can also research job industries by major via the “Explore Careers” link in the sidebar. This latter option is especially helpful because Harvard provides tips about how to get started in each field, as well as how to find a full time job in each industry.
In addition to the career services’ resources, Harvard also offers some resume and cover letter tips via the Harvard Extension Hub, in addition to other, non-career focused topics.
6. Columbia University
Columbia’s Career Education center provides resources and advice about how to find career paths you are interested in, how to write resume and thank you letters, and how to network with other people.
Some very helpful tips about job hunting and resume creation can be found on the job search tipsheets. A few especially interesting ones you might want to check out are the “30-second Introduction”, “Consulting Case Interviews”, and “Professional Image” tipsheets.
Columbia also offers an in-depth career planning guide specifically geared toward the 2014-2015 year.
7. Princeton University
Princeton offers tons of great resume advice in a clean and easy-to-follow format. You can learn specifically about using social sites to find a job, how to accent your transferrable skills or how to assess what careers are right for you.
Princeton also offers a detailed career planning guide that can help you get started if you’re still on the fence about the right kind of job for you.
8. Yale University
Yale offers a comprehensive career exploration list by major, in addition to its various resume and cover letter tips. While you won’t be able to view the school’s resume workshop video without valid Yale login information, you can read its resume advice and check out its huge list of resume-friendly action verbs.
Another really helpful feature from this site: you have access to most of the career services’ interactive features, including warm up questions, interview examples and tons of sample interview questions.
How Does Your Resume Score?
After you’ve checked out some of these sites and created what you think is a solid resume, make sure to send that baby through a resume grader to see if it needs any improvements.
When you finally take the plunge and send your resume to your prospective employer, you can feel good knowing that you have an A resume grade and tips from eight Ivy League schools to back you up.
What other resources have you found helpful for building out your resume? In your opinion, what is the hardest section to create? Let me know in the comments section.
Image Credits: Library by jarmoluk via Pixabay