Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

College Admissions

Our Counselors Answered:

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

Nina BerlerFounderunCommon Apps

Student-Submitted Resume

Yes, I do encourage students to create a professional-looking resume prior to their senior year. Often the Common App does not provide enough space for students who have a number of activities to share or those who want to provide in-depth information. The resume may be uploaded to the Common App. In addition, the students can bring the resume with them when going on interviews. It may prompt questions by the interviewer and also serve to help the interviewer while he or she is writing a report.

Wendy Andreen, PhD

Expanded Resume – Absolutely!

Unless the college specifically says a resume may not be submitted (there are a few), I always tell students to submit an ‘expanded’ resume. Expanded is the critical word. (The application form has limited space so always be sure your best and most important information is on the form.) What is an expanded resume? It uses ‘action statements’ to provide depth for each activity. Begin each statement with a verb and succinctly describe your involvement. Example: –Organized and supervised a clothing drive for the homeless, –Recruited volunteers and delivered clothing to shelter. Your initial resume should be completed by the end of your junior year so you will have copies to take with you when you visit colleges. You may offer a copy to admissions officers, professors, alumni interviewers. Even if they don’t use it – you came prepared! You should update it at the end of the summer and be sure your counselor has the most current version. When submitting your expanded resume (yes, it may be longer than two pages – it’s not a corporate resume), if you are uploading it, send it as a pdf so it will retain its format. If you are mailing it, ask your registrar if it can be included with the transcript (if it is going by snail mail). Otherwise, mail it in a manila envelope with correct postage. Be sure your full name and ID are on each page of the resume to make sure it gets to your file.

Seth AllenDean of Admissions and Financial AidGrinnell College

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

Here is my video response to the question.

Lily TrayesFounder and CEOIvy League Placement

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

Here is my video response to the question.

Pam ProctorAuthor The College Hook

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

Here is my video response to the question.

Rod BugarinFormer Admissions OfficerColumbia, Brown, and Wesleyan University

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

Here is my video response to the question.

Karen Ekman-BaurDirector of College CounselingLeysin American School

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

I do not work in an admissions office, but it is my understanding that a student-submitted resume is neither recommended nor desired. It is conceivable that a college or university could for some reason request a resume, but I’ve never encountered that situation. Colleges/universities gather the information they want through their institutional applications, the Common Application, and/or the Common Application supplements specific to the schools. A student-submitted resume would merely be extraneous in this context; they will already have the required information. If a student submits a resume anyhow, I don’t know how or even IF it would be considered in the application review process.

王文君 June ScortinoPresidentIVY Counselors Network

during the interview and submit online

for some students who has a long list of accomplishment, it is suggested that she or he should submit resume online or during the interview process.

Erica WhiteCollege & Career CounselorMiddletown High School

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

I encourage all of my students to submit a resume. It is a great way to help market yourself in a clear, concise manner. Students can attach their resume to their commonapp under the writing tab in the additional information section. Due to the fact that the commonapp only allows for 10 activities, a student can use their resume to further highlight their activities. If using a regular paper or online application. Students can have their high school counselor send in the resume with their transcripts or email the admissions department with their attachment.

Laura O’Brien GatzionisFounderEducational Advisory Services

Follow the directions

This is one of those times when you need to go directly to the admissions page of the college’s website. Research to find out if supplemental material is encouraged or discouraged and follow the directions. Admissions officers dislike it when students disregard clearly stated instructions. If there is no specific advice and you really cannot fit the information in the allotted areas on the application, then you can upload the resume in the additional information section. Always use a print preview to make sure everything had been uploaded correctly.

Trevor CreedenDirector of College and Career CounselingDelaware County Christian School

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

I am a big believer in the resume. The resume should be one page in length, include a profile picture and include anything and everything you have done outside of your core academic classes in school. Even electives that student took could be included in the resume. A college wants to know how you are going to benefit their school and be involved. They don’t want students who are going to stay in their room all day and study. They want students who are going to be an asset to their campus and get involved. A picture is important because it forces them to put a face to the name. At a lot of big universities, an applicant is just a number. When they see a picture, it personalizes you a bit to them and can make a small difference. I send the resume in with the transcript to make sure they get it. You can also use the resume to give to teachers when asking for a letter of recommendation, a college rep when they visit your school, an internship or an interview you have. I have sample resumes if you would like to see one.

Annie ReznikCounselor/CEOCollege Guidance Coach

Every Senior Needs a Resume

All high school seniors should create a resume. Resumes are excellent tools for sharing information in a standard format. To create a resume, start with a template from Microsoft Word (your guidance office may also have samples). Before submitting your resume, have your guidance counselor, English teacher, or another trusted adult proofread it for clarity and accuracy. You should bring a resume with you to each college interview, supply each person writing a letter of recommendation with a copy, and send it along with your college application. You will need to update your resume annually as you apply for scholarships, seek internships, find part-time employment, and prepare for life beyond college.

Patricia AviezerPresidentInside Track To College, Inc.

Resume Writing is a “Life Skill”

Your college’s instructions on the application should always be your first point of reference for whether a college wants you to submit a resume as part of their online application. Having said that, when I work with students I always have them draft an academic resume, (Art students will draft an artistic resume as well) to help organize their information about their experiences, involvement, honors/awards by category. Resume writing is a great exercise because now if applications are requesting this information in a “bulleted” format, limiting the number of comments a student can make, writing the resume as a first step helps prioritize and organize each category to apply this information in the required format. Resumes evolve over time, so by becoming familiar with the layout and concepts of effective resume development, students learn the skills needed to recreate resumes for various purposes in the future. READ THE APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS CAREFULLY! If the college does not make a statement about NO RESUME, it can be very helpful to supply one by snail mail. When would a student provide a resume if an application does not request one? If the student is a powerhouse and the “other” information on the resume is additive to the application and because of space constraints this information was not included, it could be sent.

Suzan ReznickIndependent Educational ConsultantThe College Connection

That depends…..

The Common Application now has 12 boxes, where a student can list: school activities, jobs, interests, hobbies etc. If you really have more activities/accomplishments then the space would provide then you do have the option of uploading a resume in the Additional Information section. What you have listed on your resume however should not be redundant to what you have already listed. And it should indeed add something to your overall profile. Having a resume can be helpful though, you might want to give it to your teachers, who will be submitting recommendations for you and your guidance counselor as well. Some students like to bring a resume to a college interview, which can facilitate conversation.

Nancy MilneOwnerMilne Collegiate Consulting

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

A student-submitted resume is fine if you just have soooooo many activities/awards/extracurriculars to list that they just don’t fit on the Common App section. If that is the case, note “see attached resume” and don’t fill in that section. Application readers don’t have much time, so don’t waste it by making them re-read information stated elsewhere. That said, make sure that you aren’t listing minutia that doesn’t belong in the application anyway. If you are just trying to “pad” the file, don’t go there, they will see right through that. It never hurts to have a resume ready to go. Create one now and it will be easy to just update it as your life proceeds.

Steven CrispOwner Crisp College Advising

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

From my experience, a lot of students submitted resumes with their application. We didn’t mind the resume as long as it was giving us different information than was on the application. The application will give you room to list your activities and accomplishments. However, if you have more than will fit there or there is something else you want the admission office to know, then submit a resume. I would suggest submitting it with the application if possible. If not, then mail it in with an explanation letter of why you are submitting it. If you have a relationship with an adviser you could also email it to them.

Patricia KrahnkePresident/PartnerGlobal College Search Associates, LLC

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

Short Answer: A “resume” is a great idea. But make sure your extracurricular activities and achievements do not outshine your academic achievements. One or two extracurriculars in your area(s) of interest with strong leadership involvement, coupled with great grades and board scores, makes you a wonderful candidate for admission to most colleges. Detailed Answer: For those colleges that look for something other than numbers in their admissions process, a resume is a terrific opportunity to show that your personal passions reflect your college search. In other words, if you are applying to vet programs, your resume should reflect an interest in the welfare of animals, i.e. involvement in 4H, working for a veterinarian, etc. Likewise, if you are pursuing a very competitive Pharm.D. program, and you have great grades and board scores, pharmacy or pharmaceutical company experience (via a coop program, or part-time work) will set you apart from other top students. In other words, you want to make it clear to any college that you are serious about the major you wish to pursue. But here’s the problem: We see too many college applications that have a lengthy list of extracurriculars, but the grades have clearly suffered as a result of misplaced focus. You usually won’t be rejected by most colleges if you have great grades and board scores and few or no extracurriculars; however, you WILL be denied if your grades are low but you have a long list of extracurriculars. It’s more important to have one or two strong areas of extracurricular interest and pursue leadership positions within those areas, than to over extend your energies into many areas and not have any leadership examples on your applications.

Bill PrudenHead of Upper School, College CounselorRavenscroft School

Resumes: A Way to Showcase Who You Are

Supplementing the colleges’ own pointed questions, a well-crafted resume can help complete the picture of the applicant. In writing a resume students should avoid endless lists. Instead, the resume should highlight the things that really matter to the student, the activities and recognitions that illustrate their true talents and passions, not their ability to be a joiner or a follower. Effective resumes give the admissions people a better sense of who an applicant is and what they offer the prospective college community, since in the end, whether applicants are what the shapers of that community want is what the admission process is about.

Lauren CarterDirector of College CounselingLouisville Collegiate School

A resume is an opportunity to tell more

I believe all students should create and submit activity resumes. This is a great opportunity to further explain an involvement or honor you have received. Organize your resumes by type of activity, include years of participation and hours completed. Also make sure to add descriptions if needed but be clear and concise in your descriptions. The resumes can be easily uploaded to a Common Application under the Additional Information section. In addition, you may also hand out a resume to an alumni representative after you have had an interview or as a follow-up with an admissions officer. Make sure your school counselor has a copy of your resume and in some cases teachers who are writing your recommendations may ask for one.

Wendy KahnPrincipalWendy Kahn College Consulting, LLC

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

Sometimes it can be hard to explain your activities and interests outside the classroom on the typical college application form. The Common Application and many colleges’ own applications have grids to list your activities. But the space is small and the format restrictive. A possible solution is to create your own resume that presents the details of your achievements organized the way you want. But there’s a catch: While some colleges welcome or even require resumes, others specify in their instructions that they won’t accept any extra materials. And even at colleges that don’t directly say “no resumes,” the current trend is somewhat anti-resume. Many schools say they just don’t have time to read them, and they want students to limit their activity lists to what fits in those little cells on the application and expand on activities through their essays. If in doubt about a school’s preference, ask the Admissions office! Even if you’re not going to make it part of your formal application, creating a resume is a good exercise: It lets you organize and prioritize what you’ve accomplished outside the classroom, and it gives you a template to work from when you tackle the “Activities” sections of your applications.

Helen H. ChoiOwnerAdmissions Mavens

Simple is Better

I think that it’s important to know how to compile a solid resume because resume writing is definitely an important life skill. However, I don’t recommend submitting a separate resume along with your college applications for the following reasons: 1. some colleges expressly tell applicants NOT to submit separate resumes 2. most applications (including the Common Application) provide ample space for you to list your activities 3. most of the student resumes just repeat information that is already set forth in the application 4. some application readers find having to read additional materials annoying If you do decide to submit a resume, make sure that the colleges to which you are applying do not expressly request that you do NOT submit them. Also – craft your resumes with care. Do not list the same activity/accomplishment more than once in order to “beef up” your accomplishments. Many students will list membership in “honor” societies under “honors” and “activities.” Once is sufficient. “Double dipping” just makes your look bad.

Helen H. ChoiOwnerAdmissions Mavens

Simple is Better

I think that it’s important to know how to compile a solid resume because resume writing is definitely an important life skill. However, I don’t recommend submitting a separate resume along with your college applications for the following reasons: 1. some colleges expressly tell applicants NOT to submit separate resumes 2. most applications (including the Common Application) provide ample space for you to list your activities, accomplishments, and honors 3. most of the student resumes just repeat information that is already set forth in the application 4. some application readers find having to read additional materials annoying 5. many resumes are not read at all If you do decide to submit a resume, make sure that the colleges to which you are applying do not expressly request that you do NOT submit them. Also – craft your resumes with care. Do not list the same activity/accomplishment more than once in order to “beef up” your accomplishments. Many students will list membership in “honor” societies under “honors” and “activities.” Once is sufficient. “Double dipping” just makes your look bad. In my many years of interviewing applicants for Harvard, I found that having to wade through 3-4 page resumes only to find that the same activity was listed two, three and sometimes four times — was a truly negative experience and duly noted on my interview report to the school.

Helen H. ChoiOwnerAdmissions Mavens

Simple is Better

I think that it’s important to know how to compile a solid resume because resume writing is definitely an important life skill. However, I don’t recommend submitting a separate resume along with your college applications for the following reasons: 1. some colleges expressly tell applicants NOT to submit separate resumes; 2. most applications (including the Common Application) provide ample space for you to list your activities, accomplishments, and honors; 3. most of the student resumes just repeat information that is already set forth in the application; 4. some application readers find having to read additional materials annoying; and 5. many resumes are not read at all and therefore are a waste of your time. If you do decide to submit a resume, make sure that the colleges to which you are applying do not expressly request that you do NOT submit them. Also – craft your resumes with care. Do not list the same activity/accomplishment more than once in order to “beef up” your accomplishments. Many students will list membership in “honor” societies under “honors” and “activities.” Once is sufficient. “Double dipping” just makes your look bad. In my many years of interviewing applicants for Harvard, I found that having to wade through 3-4 page resumes only to find that the same activity was listed two, three and sometimes four times — was a truly negative experience and duly noted on my interview report to the school.

Kristina DooleyIndependent Educational ConsultantEstrela Consulting

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

Though some schools do ask for students to include a resume, this is generally unnecessary. The items that you would include on a resume (club memberships, work experience, awards, etc.) are all things that are already being asked of you on your application. Though a resume does streamline this information, some admission officers may just bypass your resume as an additional piece of paper with repetitive information.

Helen H. ChoiOwnerAdmissions Mavens

Simple is Better

I think that it’s important to know how to compile a solid resume because resume writing is definitely an important life skill. However, I don’t recommend submitting a separate resume along with your college applications for the following reasons: 1. some colleges expressly tell applicants NOT to submit separate resumes; 2. most applications (including the Common Application) provide ample space for you to list your activities, accomplishments, and honors; 3. most of the student resumes just repeat information that is already set forth in the application; 4. some application readers find having to read additional materials annoying; and 5. many resumes are not read at all and therefore are a waste of your time. If you do decide to submit a resume, make sure that the colleges to which you are applying do not expressly request that you do NOT submit them. Also – craft your resumes with care. Do not list the same activity/accomplishment more than once in order to “beef up” your accomplishments. Many students will list membership in “honor” societies under “honors” and “activities.” Once is sufficient. “Double dipping” just makes your look bad. In my many years of interviewing applicants for Harvard, I found that having to wade through 3-4 page resumes only to find that the same activity was listed two, three and sometimes four times — was a truly negative experience and duly noted on my interview report to the school.

Helen H. ChoiOwnerAdmissions Mavens

Simple is Better

I think that it’s important to know how to compile a solid resume because resume writing is definitely an important life skill. However, I don’t recommend submitting a separate resume along with your college applications for the following reasons: 1. some colleges expressly tell applicants NOT to submit separate resumes; 2. most applications (including the Common Application) provide ample space for you to list your activities, accomplishments, and honors; 3. most of the student resumes just repeat information that is already set forth in the application; 4. some application readers find having to read additional materials annoying; and 5. many resumes are not read at all and therefore are a waste of your time. If you do decide to submit a resume, make sure that the colleges to which you are applying do not expressly request that you do NOT submit them. Also – craft your resumes with care. Do not list the same activity/accomplishment more than once in order to “beef up” your accomplishments. Many students will list membership in “honor” societies under “honors” and “activities.” Once is sufficient. “Double dipping” just makes your look bad. In my many years of interviewing applicants for Harvard, I found that having to wade through 3-4 page resumes only to find that the same activity was listed two, three and sometimes four times — was a truly negative experience and duly noted on my interview report to the school. Don’t make it difficult for admissions officer to find out who you are. Keep it simple and direct and put forth your best efforts on the application. If you have the time to devote to agonizing over a resume, you have the time to craft an elegant application that sets forth the best version of you. Your application readers will be able to “get” you quickly and THAT is the goal — right?

Reecy ArestyCollege Admissions/Financial Aid Expert & AuthorPayless For College, Inc.

Is a student-submitted resume suggested? How/when/where?

On the Common App if the college asks for any additional info you’d like to submit. Just make sure it’s not too many characters. Otherwise, submit it directly to the director of admissions, or give it to the interviewer at the beginning of your interview.

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