Congratulations! If you are reading this article, it means that you are either currently enrolled at university or you are just about to graduate. Just one step outside your door, there is a world filled with possibilities and challenges that you will definitely face until you get to your dream job. But before you feel anxious about it, take a deep breath and calmly read this article, I assure you it will help you out.
This article will work as a manual to help you improve your CV. But first of all, you could be wondering what a CV is. Curriculum Vitae, also known as a CV, is a written overview of someone’s life work. With that said, this document is literally about your life progress, including your academic formation, publications, qualifications, etc. However, I do know how stressful it is to face a blank canvas, especially if that canvas is dedicated to portraying your identity as a student/future worker. The time has come for you to grab your pen and take some notes on how to improve your Curriculum Vitae.
1. Find your own voice:
This topic may sound a bit too philosophical for some people, but it is a necessary step once your goal is to improve your CV. Just as choosing your course, writing your CV requires you to ask yourself “what do I want to do?” or even “which impact do I want to cause?”. These questions will enlighten you in finding your own voice once you start writing your CV. They will also guide the recruiter that might consider you for a job position; using your own voice shows authenticity, creativity and personality, positive characteristics that could favour you during your application process.
2. Avoid presets of CVs:
As I have mentioned before, your curriculum is a document about your life work. It is about you, only you. If you google “how to write a CV?”, immediately there will appear websites that provide a preset, they would only ask you for some information about yourself and would deliver your curriculum within five minutes. Although it is tempting to rely on such a quick and easy mechanism, your CV wouldn’t act as a perfect reflection of your life’s work. Neither would it distinguish itself between the 1000 CVs that your recruiter has on his email either. So, it is better to write it from scratch rather than relying on an algorithm.
3. Add structure to your curriculum:
When it comes to explaining your life’s path, being organised is a must. Setting a structure to your CV (to any document, really), will not only facilitate the whole writing process for you, but it will also guide whoever is reading it. In my opinion, the perfect CV would include: a small paragraph about your basic information (such as name, age, course, university, email, etc), followed by a small introduction about yourself, then a paragraph about your extracurricular activities and previous experiences.
4. Leave space for a picture:
Usually, it is not common to share a picture of yourself. But, if the position that you are applying for requires one, it is better to take the size of the picture into consideration since it could modify the structure of your curriculum. Trust me, it is better to think ahead instead of losing your mind with changing your whole CV just because of one picture.
5. Share ways to reach out to you:
On topic number three, I have mentioned the structure of my ideal CV. It is urgent to share ways to contact you since the goal of your CV is to get you a job. The recruiters will be very pleased to see that you, as a candidate, are open to getting in contact. So don’t be shy, share your number, email and LinkedIn profile and wait for them to reach out to you!
6. Write a small introduction about yourself:
This introduction should not be about your basic information. It should be about your personality, the recruiters will be curious to know what you, not only as a candidate but also as a person, are like. It is within this paragraph that you should write about your goals, who you are, which characteristics you have and what you can offer to them. Introduce yourself!
7. Share your academic formation:
If you did a semester abroad, it is within this section of your CV that you can talk about it. Share what you have learned during this semester and how it aligns with your work at your home, university and your professional goals. And don’t forget to share your grades, sometimes your grade rundown is just as important as your overall grade.
8. Create a shortlist of your extracurricular activities:
If you don’t have any previous experiences, do not panic. Instead of listing places and positions that you could have worked at, write about the extracurricular activities that you have done. Volunteer, tutoring, mentoring, workshops counts! This is the chance to show your recruiter that even with no experience, that you are a proactive, inquisitive and open-to-learn person! Attract them with your knowledge.
9. Don’t overwrite:
As students, we are used to writing long and endless essays. However, your curriculum should not be incredibly long, you must filter a bit. If you feel that you are dragging too much, take a break, read what you have written and delete what is not completely necessary. However, if you don’t feel like deleting your previous experiences, just omit some details, because your CV should not be any longer than two pages.
10. Understand that your CV is flexible:
And finally, by this step, your CV should be done. But there is a final secret that I would like to share with all of you. It is necessary to understand that your CV is a flexible document. As you develop as a student and even as a worker, new details will come to indicate on your curriculum. My suggestion is to adapt your CV to your growth, it should not limit you nor stop you. It is okay to rearrange your priorities, especially if you are aiming to get your dream