Resumes & More

Get expert advice for writing your resume or curriculum vitae (CV), view samples and templates, and learn how to tell your unique story.

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A resume is a one- to two-page document that outlines your education, skills, accomplishments and experience. Its purpose is to help you capture the attention of an employer so you can get an interview.

What To Put On Your Resume

When seeking a job or internship, design your resume to highlight your most related experience and skills. Write about internship(s), related volunteer experiences; academic or individual projects depending on your field of study or career goals.

Here are some typical sections to include:

Objective (optional): An objective is used to explain why you are creating this resume and can be an opportunity to connect you to a specific job/internship, but they are not mandatory

Objective Example:

Objective
Seeking an internship in human services for the Summer of 20XX utilizing demonstrated interpersonal and helping skills.

Education: List your degrees, majors, minors, study abroad and/or any other relevant training/opportunities.

Education Example:

Education
University at Buffalo, The State University of New York

Master of Art, Major, Graduation Month 20XX
Bachelor of Arts or Science, Major, Graduation Month 20XX

Experience: Any employment, internships, significant campus leadership offices, volunteer work and class/research projects.

  • Explain what were your key tasks and outcomes/results by using bullets and action words.
  • Avoid passive phrasing such as “duties include,” “responsible for” or “project was completed by using.”
  • Quantify information by including numbers, percentages and dollar amounts.
  • Freshmen/sophomores: List high school experiences.

Experience Example:

Human Services Experience
Kids 1st Therapy
, Getzville, New York    April-July 20XX
Intern

  • Observed up to 15 therapy sessions every week with licensed therapist
  • Studied sessions in which therapist utilized Lidcombe Therapy techniques 

Skills: Use this section to highlight skills that are specifically related to the job/internship you are seeking.

Skills Example:

Skills
Languages:
Fluent in Cantonese and basic Mandarin

Software/Programs: Adobe Creative Suite, CAD, Microsoft Office Suite (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, Publisher, Access)

Certifications: American Heart Association CPR (June 20XX)

Relevant Projects: Projects that you did in class that are related to your major/career interest.

  • Identify team/classroom/individual noteworthy academic projects.
  • Concisely demonstrate your skills and knowledge.
  • Integrate other skills when communicating specific accomplishments.
  • Include your individual contributions and outcomes. 

Relevant Projects Example:

Relevant Projects
Marketing Plan, University at Buffalo        Spring 20XX

  • Perform situation analysis to determine relevant details about potential market share and target audience
  • Identify opportunities and challenges based on analysis to begin developing measurable objectives, strategies and implementing media plans

Involvement: List clubs, sports, leadership roles and/or volunteering that you've done. This is especially helpful when looking for internships or part-time job without having a lot of work experience. Include accomplishments using strong action words.

Involvement Example:

Leadership Experience
UB Club Hockey, University at Buffalo, Buffalo, New York
Captain

  • Organize and lead weekly practices for team of 15
  • Study practice schedules and modify practices to simulate competition
  • Communicate with and encourage players to develop team chemistry

Achievements: Indicate noteworthy academic, athletic, community, club and employer recognition.

Note: If you are only listing 1-3 honors, consider incorporating into education section rather than creating separate section. 

Achievement Example:

Honors and Awards

  • Health Essential Association’s Volunteer Service Award, 20XX
  • University at Buffalo President's Scholarship, 20XX
  • Dean's List, 20XX to 20XX
  • Lambda Pi Eta, National Communication Association, inducted 20XX

Online Tools & Resources

GoinGlobal

Many countries use the words resume and CV interchangeably, so make sure you understand what documents you are required to submit. GoinGlobal allows you to view resume and CV samples by country.

You can access GoinGlobal by logging into Bullseye powered by Handshake.

Coursera

Enroll in our Coursera- How to Write a Resume course, an online course that guides you to having an eye-catching resume, letting your professional strengths shine.

*This course is free when you use your @buffalo.edu email.

Tips From Recruiters

  • Customize your resume to each application.
  • Pick a format and stick to it. Use consistent spacing, font and format and convert to a PDF.
  • Try to avoid the use of first and third person pronouns, such as “I,” “he” or “she.” 
  • Spell out all acronyms the first time they are used, followed by the acronym in parentheses e.g., University at Buffalo (UB). 
  • Use a variety of "action words" to bring your skills and experiences to life and avoid using each word more than once. 
  • Use Keywords. Scan the job description, see what words are used most often and make sure you’ve included them in your bullet points.
  • Refrain from using slang or jargon.
  • Name Your File Smartly. Save it as “Jane Smith Resume” instead of “Resume.”
  • Proofread, Proofread, Proofread. Ask family or friends to check for spelling and grammatical errors.

List of Action Words

Most resume bullet points start with an "action word" that help clearly illustrate what you did, and why you did it well. Action words help highlight your skills and engages the resume reader.

A

Abstracted
Achieved
Acquired
Acted
Adapted
Addressed
Administered
Advertised
Advocated
Aided
Allocated
Analyzed
Answered
Anticipated
Applied
Appraised
Approved
Arranged
Ascertained
Assembled
Assessed
Assisted
Attained
Audited
Augmented
Authored

B

Bolstered
Briefed
Brought
Budgeted
Built

C

Calculated
Cared
Charged
Chartered
Checked
Clarified
Classified
Coached
Collaborated
Collected
Comforted
Communicated
Compared
Compiled
Completed
Composed
Computed
Conceived
Conducted
Conserved
Constructed
Consulted
Contracted
Contributed
Controlled
Converted
Cooperated
Coordinated
Correlated
Counseled
Created
Critiques
Cultivated

D

Debated
Decided
Delegated
Delivered
Designed
Detected
Determined
Developed
Diagnosed
Directed
Discovered
Displayed
Distributed
Drafted
Documented

E

Edited
Eliminated
Emphasized
Enabled
Enforced
Enlisted
Established
Estimated
Evaluated
Examined
Exceeded
Excelled
Expanded
Experimented
Explained
Explored

F

Fashioned
Facilitated
Founded
Formulated
Followed
Fixed
Financed

G

Guided
Gathered
Gained

H

Helped
Headed
Handled

I

Interviewed
Integrated
Instructed
Instituted
Inspected
Informed
Influenced
Increased
Improved
Implemented
Imagined
Illustrated
Identified
Investigated
Invented
Introduced

J

Judged

L

Launched
Learned
Lectured
Led
Lifted
Listed
Listened
Located
Logged

M

Made
Maintained
Managed
Manipulated
Mapped
Mastered
Maximized
Meditated
Memorized
Mentored
Met
Minimized
Modeled
Modified
Monitored
Motivated

N

Narrated
Negotiated

O

Observed
Obtained
Offered
Operated
Ordered
Organized
Originated
Overcame
Oversaw

P

Participated
Perfected
Performed
Persuaded
Planned
Practiced
Predicted
Prepared
Presented
Prioritized
Produced
Programmed
Projected
Promoted
Proposed
Protected
Proved
Provided
Published
Purchased

Q

Queried
Questioned

R

Raised
Ran
Ranked
Read
Reasoned
Received
Recommended
Reconciled
Recorded
Reduced
Referred
Related
Relied
Repaired
Reported
Represented
Researched
Resolved
Responded
Restored
Revamped
Reviewed

S

Scanned
Scheduled
Screened
Selected
Served
Set goals
Shaped
Sketched
Solved
Spearheaded
Specialized
Spoke
Strategized
Streamlined
Studied
Succeeded
Suggested
Summarized
Supervised
Supported
Surveyed
Sustained

T

Talked
Taught
Tended
Tested
Theorized
Trained
Translated
Tutored

U

Undertook
Updated
Upgraded
Utilized

V

Validated
Verified
Visualized

W

Weighed
Won
Wrote

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