Job Search Advice
Sample advice we provide our volunteers
See also other benefits of volunteering with us.
Here are general guidelines for resumes and cover letters. Be honest, but think of the best ways to highlight:
- Specifics that summarize the size and value of your capabilities, what you worked on, your accomplishments, improvements and initiatives.
- The size of the organizations and projects where you worked. For example, “Handled three most important clients with a total of $15 million annual billings.”
- Honors, awards, GPA, dean’s list, etc.
- Volunteer and extracurricular activities, especially where relevant.
- Quotes, testimonials, letters of recommendation from those you worked with
- Skills developed.
- Computer programs and capabilities.
- Language skills.
Use bullet points when there are three items or more. That is more attractive to read than large paragraphs.
For your cover letter, summarize:
- The most important points from your resume.
- What you have to offer – why they should hire you.
- Why you are interested in working for them.
In most cases, it’s better to keep your resume and cover letter to one page each. Don’t use type smaller than 11 points. You can eliminate or combine less important details of each job. Consider adapting your presentation for various types of jobs you seek.
For career direction, we suggest an assessment like the Strong Interest Survey or Myers-Briggs. Even after you graduate, your school may offer these free, as well as additional job search and career help.
Helpful information on marketing and job hunting is also available in books, your public library and online.
If you volunteer at least 100 hours with us, we provide additional help, letters of recommendation and more. You can ask for recommendation letters from other places you worked or volunteered. Keep the originals and make copies to send with your resume or bring to interviews. This also can be a good source of quotes for your resume and cover letter.