Making a Standout Resume with No Job Experience

Having trouble getting started on your resume because you haven’t worked in your field of choice yet? Not to fret, this is a dilemma that many college students face as well. Here are some great ways to spruce up your portfolio without any job experience!

  1. Volunteer. Volunteering opens up doors to internships and even paid job opportunities. Not to mention, volunteering looks fantastic on a resume, as it shows that you are so passionate that you are willing to work for only the experience.
  2. Clubs. Join clubs that interest you or pertain to the field of work in which you will want to apply eventually. This will help you delve into the community that you want to be a part of.
  3. Learn skills outside the work environment. Learning skills that give you brownie points on your resume is a win-win for you! This includes getting certifications for specific skill sets such as CPR training, Photoshop certification, a food handlers license; as they may apply to your field.
  4. Learn languages. Being fluent or well-versed in more than one language makes you marketable to a broader audience. Languages are not exclusive to the verbal kind either; programming languages such as JavaScript, C#, C++ and Python are among the most popular programming languages to learn currently. In our tech-centered society, having this skill on a resume is invaluable.
  5. Reach out to professionals in the field. Shadow people who are already working in your field of choice. This not only will highlight your dedication and interest in the field, it will open up future opportunities for references and recommendations. Contacts and communication are keys to marketing yourself!
  6. Create experience. If you can’t find a way to volunteer, intern or shadow in your field of choice, create a learning environment for yourself. The internet has a wide variety of online courses for you to get started if you are completely lost. Otherwise, you can always get started by making your own work.
  7. Have a solid statement of purpose. Your statement of purpose is separate from a resume but they go hand-in-hand. Therefore, a great statement of purpose will help your future employer overlook any shortage of prior job experience. A good statement of purpose should highlight what you hope to learn from the job you are applying for, and emphasize how your current skill set will contribute to your learning and growth at this job.
  8. Sell your knowledge/schooling. While most people first applying for jobs might not have experience in the job market of choice, they might have taken classes that contribute to their knowledge of the field. These classes can be just as valuable as job experience. If you have taken courses and hope to apply to a job in the field of business, on your resume you can list the courses you have taken that pertain to the job you are applying to and highlight what skills and information you have learned that would potentially contribute to your performance at that job.
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