Biomolecular Sciences Portfolio Task: Your Resume

Background

All majors in the Department of Biomolecular Sciences are required to maintain a Student Portfolio. The structure of the Student Portfolio will be formally introduced to students in BMS 190, Introduction to Research I, and further developed in BMS 290, Introduction to Research II.

What Is a Resume?

Resumes are what people use to get jobs, right? Wrong! A resume is a one or two page summary of your education, skills, accomplishments, and experience. Your resume's purpose is to get your foot in the door. A resume does its job successfully if it does not exclude you from consideration. To prepare a successful resume, you need to know how to review, summarize, and present your experiences and achievements on one page. Unless you have considerable experience, you don't need two pages. Outline your achievements briefly and concisely. Your resume is your ticket to an interview where you can sell yourself!

(http://www.psgi.net/resumeTips.htm)

In other words, a completed resume is aimed specifically at one job (e. g., Lab Technician at Curagen, Inc) or at one job field (Clinical Testing). For this Portfolio Task, you donít have a specific job youíre aiming for. Instead, you will assemble a resume that includes all parts of your experience, skills, and training, and youíll add to it as you continue your academic career here at CCSU. When you want to send your resume to a prospective employer, before or after you graduate, you will modify it to emphasize those items of particular interest to that employer.

Resume Content

You can find lots of advice on what to put into, and what to leave out of, a resume. The lower part of this sheet lists some Web sites you may want to consult. To some extent, the content does depend on your current career level, that of college student. Include the following sections:

You may have nothing to enter in the Independent Research section, or you may have significant experience or skills that donít fit into one of these categories. Modify your resume as necessary, but try to stay as close as you can to the foregoing structure. In the section on Work Experience, list positions in reverse chronological order, and include dates (month and year), company names and addresses and the titles of positions held.

Format

Though both major word processing programs (Word and WordPerfect) provide resume templates into which you can just plug your personal data, I strongly advise you not to use them. They tend to force you into a format that may not fit your current status, and they tend to be embedded with dozens of fancy formatting commands that make them very difficult for you to modify and update later.

Your resume must be typed or computer-printed on plain white paper, and must be no more than two pages long. Use a legible, proportional font like Times New Roman or Arial at 10-12 pt size. Though you probably will not be sending this exact document out to potential employers without fine-tuning, you should endeavor to create a polished, functional resume that you would feel comfortable showing to anyone.

A Final Note

Your resume is a "living document." As you progress through your academic career you will gain experience and insight into what you will want to do with your major. Incorporate these into your resume. Feel free to ask any faculty member for advice.

Useful Sources of Information on Resume Writing

These web sites offer general advice and step-by-step procedures for crafting a great resume. You may not need to consult any of them to complete this particular portfolio task, but you should seek their advice before trying to use your resume to actually get a job.

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Return to the BMS Portfolio Introduction Page

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Revised January 29, 2005