A resume allows you to take everything you have done in your life and quantitatively present it on one page to college interviewers and employers. Not only that, but it makes it easier to document what you have achieved and been a part of, making the college application process that much easier when it comes to thinking about what to write in your essays. Here are some tips on what makes a good high school resume:

  1. Include Everything – With probably little to no actual work experience, it is important to show everything you have been a part of whether that is clubs, sports, or organizations. Write about the accomplishments you have worked the hardest for and are most proud of first. Include test scores, class rankings, and even rigorous classes that you have taken. Don’t forget to mention education, awards, and personal accomplishments you are more proud of. The more the page is filled, the better it looks at first-sight to the person you are handing it to.
  2. Prioritize Your List – As important as it is to include everything, make sure to prioritize your more important achievements closer to the top where they are noticed faster. This tells your interviewer that you value those achievements more than the later ones on the resume.
  3. Make it Look Professional – Appearing as professional as possible is sometimes as important as what is actually on the resume itself. Look at different templates and outlines if you need to, and be sure to proofread several times so there are no grammatical mistakes. Choose a simple font and make sure everything is formatted correctly. Including a picture is a must!
  4. Be Specific – Go into detail for what you have done and accomplished in each extracurricular that you choose to list. Exactly how much money did you raise? Who did you help? Use action verbs to present a much more visual representation of what you did. All of these will leave a much more lasting impact on the person reading your resume than if you were to use broad, general statements.
  5. Proofread, Proofread, Proofread – Nothing is more embarrassing than your interviewer finding a typo on the page. Make sure that doesn’t happen by rereading your resume and ensuring everything on the page is a representation of who you are. You can even have someone else proofread your resume too – a second pair of eyes to check never hurts.

A resume is only one of the first steps into the college planning and application process, but if done early it will significantly help you along the way. Not to mention, most high school students graduate without ever making a resume, so you’re already way ahead of the curve!

We’ve included a couple examples of a resume templates below. There are many many styles out there that can be found when searching for “high school resume” in Google or other search engines.

high school student resume for college applications

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