Build Your Resume In High School


Image provided by Ladders Club

Za'Nya Fulton

The school year is coming to a close and a lot of seniors here at Kenwood are receiving their college application responses as well as choosing where to spend the next four years of their education. The biggest question through highs school  is what differentiates one student from another. 

As high school students prepare for their future and start thinking about college applications or job opportunities, building a strong resume becomes an important task. A resume is a document that highlights one’s academic achievements, extracurricular activities, volunteer work, and work experience. A well-written resume can make a significant difference in getting accepted to a college or securing a job interview.

There is a lot that goes on through the admissions process and with approximately 30.2 million applications a year from students aged 18 to 241. The admissions process runs from November to March with every college considering different elements when choosing the students they will admit. Despite every college looking for different things, the common things that schools look for include SAT scores, extracurriculars, grades, discipline record, letters of recommendations, and higher level coursework (Austin).  High school students are often taught that only students with the highest SAT scores and the best GPAs have the potential to go to college but that’s simply not accurate.

High school resumes are different from professional resumes and need to be tailored to highlight the unique experiences of a student. Students can start by listing the courses they have taken, including any honors or advanced courses. They can also include their grade point average (GPA) and standardized test scores. Extracurricular activities should also be mentioned, including sports, clubs, and community service projects. Any leadership roles within these activities should be highlighted.

Volunteering is a great way for students to demonstrate their commitment and dedication to their community and interests.  Any volunteer work can be listed on a resume, along with any leadership positions held within the volunteer organization. Work experience is also a valuable addition to a resume. Even if the job was not directly related to the student’s career interests, it still shows the development of important skills such as communication, teamwork, and time management.

Many schools offer resources to help students create their resume. Counselors can review and provide feedback on a student’s resume. They can also provide tips on how to highlight certain experiences or how to format the resume for maximum impact.Students senior year they work on creating a resume for the traditional senior experience of Mock Interview day. 

In addition to the traditional resume, students can also consider creating an online portfolio or website to showcase their work. This can include examples of class projects, photography, videos, or writing samples. A Kenwood High School junior Glory A. knew she need to start building her high school resume her freshmen year. She is currently involved in six honor societies, part of two volunteer programs and five outside clubs and organizations to build her resume. Being involved and working on building that resume from freshmen year on can be a great way for students to set themselves apart and showcase their unique talents to potential colleges or employers.

A strong high school resume can open doors for students in the future. It’s important for students to start thinking about their resumes early on and dedicate time to building a comprehensive and impressive document.



Austin, Oliver. FAQ: How Many Americans Apply For A College A Year? – Teaching students to successfully apply to college. Teaching Students to Successfully Apply to College. 2021 November 19.

Schmidt, Eric. “School Enrollment: College Down, Graduate School Up.” U.S. Census Bureau. 2021, October 8.