Helping young people
find employment

By Emily Grubb, youth service officer


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A good résumé has one objective – to help you land an interview. Your résumé provides potential employers with a brief summary of your work and volunteer experience, education and skills. An effective résumé will help you sell your skills and abilities to employers.

You may also use your résumé in other situations, such as applying for a scholarship, seeking admission to an educational institution or applying for a work visa in another country.

Before you begin your résumé, think about the type of skills you have that employers will find valuable and think about what skills may be required for the job you are applying for. After brainstorming about your skills and abilities, think about what experiences you’ve had at work, at school and in volunteer positions that will help demonstrate these skills.

After you’ve finished putting this content together, you are ready to format your résumé. Follow the outline below.

Personal Information: Personal information includes your name, address, telephone number where messages can be left and your e-mail address. This should be at the top of your résumé in bold and larger-sized font.

Education: List your educational history, starting with the most recent. Include school name, type of program or major area of study, grade completed or certificate received and the year you completed your studies.

Skills: In this section, use a point-form list to highlight your greatest strengths and qualifications for the specific job you are applying for.

Work and Volunteer Experience: List your experience, again starting with the most recent. Include business names, position names, the dates you were employed and the duties you performed. If you have a lot of experience, include that which is most relevant to the job for which you are now applying. You may want to separate work and volunteer experiences into two sections. If you don’t have a lot of paid work experience, include any volunteer work you have done.

Interests and Activities: Briefly outline a few of your extra-curricular activities and interests to indicate something about your personality. You can also mention achievements and/or awards.



References: It used to be the style to write “References Available On Request” at the bottom of a résumé, but this is no longer widely done. Do not mention references on your resume, but do think carefully beforehand about who to choose as your three references. Be sure to contact them and ask their permission before including them in any reference list you supply to an employer, when asked to do so.

When you put all of this together, you should have a concise, well-organized résumé. Be sure to proofread it very carefully. Having an attractive, easy-to-read résumé can make the difference between being offered an interview or not.

For individual assistance with your résumé, or for more information, please visit the Walkerton SCCY, located at 200 McNab Street is open Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. You can reach the centre by phone at (519) 881-2305, by fax at (519) 881-0377or by e-mail at emily.grubb@servicecanada.gc.ca.

For information on the Government of Canada summer work experience programs, call 1 800 O-Canada (TTY: 1-800-926-9105), or visit servicecanada.ca/sccy.

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Monday, July 19, 2010