College Admissions: Completing Your College Resume (Well)

Like the college essay, the college resume is important because it allows admissions officers to get a more complete picture of you, the applicant. It’s not just your name, the school you attend, or your SAT scores—it’s a glance into what you’ve been doing over your last four years in high school. Be sure to highlight those extracurricular activities that hold a special meaning for you, the athletic involvement that you’ve committed your time to, and/or the community service that is significant to you. If you’re involved in a lot of activities inside and outside of school, this is your time to shine. If you’re not, that’s okay too—you can still make your resume work for you. Elaborate on those activities to which you have committed your time and been dedicated. Below are a few suggested categories of activities to include in your resume. For each category, you should be sure to name and describe the nature of the activity, list your grades of participation, and provide the time commitment involved (in terms of hours/week and weeks/year). You should also mention any honors won or positions held.

  • Extracurricular Activities: Include all of those extracurriculars you’ve given your time to throughout high school—after school clubs, student government, marching band. Don’t forget to mention that year you were elected class president.
  • Athletics:  Be sure to point out all of the athletics you’ve been involved in inside and outside of school—whether it’s your school’s intramural basketball team or your town’s swim team. Even if you’re not going to school on an athletic scholarship, any degree of participation is worth mentioning.
  • Community Involvement: So, maybe you’re not an athlete or overly involved in extracurriculars, but you love volunteering your time for a good cause. Mention any involvement in community service activities, whether it’s volunteering at a local hospital or giving your time to your church.
  • Work Experience: Include any jobs that you’ve had during high school on weekends or over the summer. Whether it’s a regular babysitting commitment or lifeguarding, it’s a time commitment you’ll surely want to make known.
  • Honors & Awards: Be sure to list honors, awards, and recognition you’ve received during high school (for success in academics, athletics, etc.).   

Take the time to make your college activity resume and your application stand out. Include any and all applicable categories, so admissions officers can get a better sense of who you are and what’s important you.

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