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Resumes and Cover Letters

Need help with a resume or cover letter?

We're here to help. Check out our example templates and additional information that will help you succeed in creating a resume or cover letter tailored to your career goals.

Writing a resume or cover letter can be a daunting task. It is a process of marketing yourself, targeting your skills and listing those experiences that relate to each position or job you apply for.


What is a Resume?

A resume is a document that presents information relevant to why you are suited to a particular job or career area. Your resume is your ticket to the employment interview. The main purpose of a resume is to entice an employer to call you in for an interview.

Getting Your Information Together

Compiling information for your resume is a time-consuming process the first time you do it. But if you keep an ongoing resume file, revising your resume will be much simpler and quicker the next time you do it. Add to your file each time you think of something new you want to include. Also slip in the information on new jobs, volunteer experiences, classes, skills etc. as you acquire them.

To help you get started on drafting your resume, consider and take detailed notes on these questions.

  • What kind of job are you looking for?
  • What are your four or five best skills and how do they relate to the job you're seeking?
  • What school(s) did you go to or what training have you received? When did you graduate? Did you get a diploma, GED®, degree, and if so, in what?
  • What jobs have you had? What job title best describes what you did? What are the names and addresses of the companies you worked for? What years did you work there? Describe in detail what you did in each job.
  • What did you do particularly well in your past jobs or other experiences?
  • How do the things you've done prove that your best skills are your best skills?
  • List any tools, equipment, methods or procedures that you're familiar with.
  • List any job-related professional or civic organizations to which you belong.
  • List any awards, honors or professional recognition you have received.
  • List special accomplishments such as publications, foreign language ability, special licenses or talents that may apply to the job you're seeking.
  • Gather reference information but put it on a separate reference sheet. Try to get letters of recommendation from at least three individuals who would have an idea of how well you might perform the duties of the type of job you're applying for.

Writing Your Resume

  • List your contact details.
  • Include first and last name, phone number, professional email and address.
  • List work experience from newest to oldest.
  • Choose three to five previous roles depending on your layout and other information.
  • Provide measurable achievements in the work history section.
  • Think of tangible information, like “Improved sales by 20 percent” or “Saw an increase of revenue of $100,000 a year.”
  • Provide a variety of hard, soft and technical skills.
  • Include educational details.
  • School(s), degree(s) and relevant course(s) of study.
  • Include an optional section for any awards, certifications or licenses.

Sample Resumes