Resume Tips for College Students

Today is National Intern Day! This year at GradGuard, we are excited to have 11 interns join us for the summer season. They have been an excellent addition to the team, and we look forward to seeing how they grow once they head back to school!

One of our interns, Rylie, has a few tips and tricks to help college students write a resume to help them land an internship!

No matter the job, industry, or experience level, everyone needs a resume. But where do you start, and what information should you include?

Resumes are crucial to showcase your skills and experience as a worker. They are how you initially present yourself to a potential employer, so making an excellent first impression is critical. Your resume should highlight your talents, so even if you do not have a lot of past work experience, don’t be worried. You can still create an effective resume.

How to Create a Standout Resume

Writing a resuming can seem very overwhelming. And although it can be challenging to create your resume, following these tips will make it easy to create a successful resume.  

Use an appropriate format.

A professionally formatted resume is easy to read quickly, one that is clear and one that is efficiently organized. It should include a clear font with a font size that is not too big or not too small, 11 to 12-point font size is perfect. However, the headings and subtitles on your resume should be larger than the rest and even bolded to capture the reader’s attention. 

Write in Chronological Order.

When writing your resume, write it in reverse chronological order. Reverse chronological order means listing your working experience from the most recent to the least current, with the recent experience at the top. Writing this way allows you to demonstrate your current work and showcase your most recent experiences and accomplishments. Writing in chronological order also categorizes your headings and sections in a clear and organized way.

A chronological resume should use the following order:

  1. Header: Name and Contact Information
    1. First and last name
    2. The city and state where you are currently residing (can also include mailing address)
    3. Phone number
    4. Professional email addresses
  2. Summary
    1. 1-2 sentences 
    2. Personal statement- This is a chance to show the reader who you are and to set yourself apart from other candidates.
    3. Include character traits about yourself that demonstrate your skills in the industry. For example, “Hardworking and communicative college with a wide variety of skills and experience….”
    4. It can also be a goal statement for people with little experience.
  3. Experience
    1. Start with the most recent job at the top of the list
    2. Include company name 
    3. Dates you worked there (ex: August 2021-March 2022)
    4. Description of the job-what your position was, your responsibilities, accomplishments, etc.)
  4. Education
    1. Start with the most recent education
    2. University’s name and the city and state (ex: Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona)
    3. Major and any minors
    4. Degree
    5. GPA
    6. Expected graduation date 
  5. Skills
  6. Other optional sections such as Volunteer work, Leadership, Awards, etc. 

Consider Using a Template.

Using a resume template can be very helpful when creating a professional resume. A template can help you make your resume more compelling and visually pleasing. There are many free resume templates available online. Click here to browse some free resume templates for college students.

Use Professional and Compelling language.

A resume should use professional language with action verbs that will make your message come across stronger. For example, using action verbs such as:

  • “accomplished” rather than “completed”
  • “conceptualized” rather than “created”

This will make you sound more confident and experienced.

Update Your Resume to Keep it Up to Date.

By continuously adding updates and new experiences to your resume, you are showing how you have grown and all the ways you have improved. Updating your resume also allows you to be prepared when you need to send it to a future employer, rather than scrambling last minute to add things that you had forgotten to add.


We know that writing a resume can seem overwhelming creating a professional resume. Fortunately, plenty of options exist to help you create an excellent, professional resume. Ask your friends to review it, use online tools such as a template or resume builder when you get stuck, or speak to a professor or advisor when you need direction.


Rylie Conrad is an Arizona native who loves to spend her free time hanging out with friends and listening to music. She is excited to intern at GradGuard in the Agency, speaking with GradGuard members and helping with marketing. She is currently attending the University of Wisconsin-Madison and will be a sophomore majoring in Consumer Behavior and Marketplace Studies.