Resume session gives tips to ensure job search success

By Molly Packer

The one thing that can make or break a career opportunity is a resume. Freshman or senior, business or music major, a good resume is important to future success.

John Cunningham, senior lecturer of the communications studies department, will present “Writing a Winning Resume” at 4 p.m. today in the Barfield Drawing Room in the Student Union Building.

“The resume is kind of the first step to getting an interview,” Cunningham said. “A resume won’t get you a job, but it will get you an interview.”

Carolyn Muska, associate director of career services, is helping organize the gathering. Muska said the important components of a resume are the basic sections for entry-level employment: “work experience, a student’s education, activities they’re involved in, honors and awards and foreign languages.”

Muska explained that an integral part of a resume is showing the ability to work as a team.

“Communication and teamwork can be transferred into a job. An employer will train a student, but you can’t teach teamwork to someone,” Muska said.

Likewise, Cunningham stressed the importance of teamwork.

“[Companies] are really looking these days for well-rounded applicants,” Cunningham said. “They’re willing to sacrifice some GPA points for leadership.”

Resumes should be a topic everyone thinks about, Muska said.

“Both for students who are looking for full-time employment or a summer internship, [Writing a Winning Resume] is a good starting place,” Muska said. “Even for someone who already has a resume, they may want a better way of presenting it.”

Houston freshman Ethan Marek said he thought good sources and organization are important to a resume.

“A resume should look neat and put together,” Marek said.

A good resume is important because it is the first impression of a potential employee an interviewer sees.

“The first impression is how it looks on paper,” Cunningham said. “Pretty much to a recruiter, students should be able to be concise and fit it all on one page.”

Companies tend to think students with only 2/3 of a page filled are underqualified. Resumes that run over a page never get looked at thoroughly, Cunningham said.

Muska encouraged students of all majors and years to attend today.

“I suggest that students attend this to get the basic information and get others to critique it. We offer walk in services,” Muska said. “It’s just a good idea to get it looked at before all these career fairs that are coming up. Everyone has their own ideas, but [a resume] is ultimately a student’s marketing tool.”

Cunningham promises an informative lecture for all who attend. “They do get pizza for coming,” he said. “[Students] sit through it and at the end they are rewarded with pizza — and a better resume, of course.”