How to Write a CV for Undergraduate Students
Table of Contents
Are you about to graduate from university/college and want to pursue a career in the field of medicine or scientific research? The first step of the process is to write a compelling undergraduate CV.
It is a summary of academic experience, extracurricular activities, awards and publications. An undergraduate CV should be explicit, with two or more pages of detailed information that describes the significance of your meticulous scholarly work.
Typically undergraduate CV’s are used for applying for the following:
- Academic and research positions;
- Graduate school programs;
- Grants, fellowships, and honours;
- International organisations and employment;
Your Basic Information
This section of your resume includes information such as:
- Your name;
- Contact number;
- LinkedIn profile (if applicable).
It is needless to say that it makes a good impression if your email looks clean and professional, like for example [email protected].
Your Personal Objective
Make sure to use this section to distinguish yourself from other applicants. Talk about your career goals and make sure to keep it simple and brief. Keep skills firm and short but not, “I have great communication skills” or “I am a team player”. You’ll undoubtedly stand out from the crowd if you include personal qualities that are relevant to the job you are applying for.
Your Formal Education
It makes a good impression to start your CV with displaying your academic credentials.
- If you have gained more than one undergraduate degree, place the most recent on the top.
- If you haven’t graduated yet, list your anticipated graduation date.
- List your GPA score and don’t forget to add if you were an honour roll student.
Bachelor of Computer Science May 2019
It shows great devotion and passion if you’ve taken part in undergraduate research projects. Make sure to enlist them in your CV by dividing them into two groups: solo and collaborative projects.
Don’t leave anything out! Whether you’ve been to a summer research program or have worked as a research assistant, make sure to list it in this section.
Putting information like that will undoubtedly help you tip the scale in your favour in the eyes of prospective decision-makers.
- Sutton Trust Summer School Program, Cambridge University
- Undergraduate Research Assistant, Biochemistry Department, Imperial College London
Your Publications & Presentations
To gain a professional reputation begin with publishing or presenting your academic work. If you have published or co-published, make sure to put it on top of the list.
It bodes well to rank your publications and presentations in an organized manner starting with the ones which are most relevant to the job you’re applying for. It’s appropriate to include journal and research publications, and science articles.
Here is a sample of how this section of your CV should look like:
- Brown, M. (2017) “Obesity and parenting style”. Psychological Reports 84, 128-30.
- Wiliams, J. (2019) “Textual programming environments and the end-user.” International Symposium on End-User Development 5774: 22-29, College Lane Campus, University of Hertfordshire, UK.
Your Volunteer Experience
Volunteer experience and extracurricular activities show your passion and commitment to being a good citizen and a strong interest in your chosen work. You don’t need to list every single activity or organization you participated in. Instead, limit your list to those actions that are consistent with your career pursuits.
- Work Shadowing, MJF Accountancy Ltd
- Volunteer, Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital
- President, University Mathematics Club
Your Awards & Scholarship
Use this section in your undergraduate resume to display how you have been acknowledged for your academic accomplishments. Include awards, scholarships, and other recognition that shows your path all the way to the top.
This section of your CV is all about “self-marketing”, so don’t shy away. These achievements will set you apart from the swarm of competitors.
Check out the following examples:
- Presidential Scholarship
- Rotary Club Scholarship
- EPSRC Grant
- STEM Talent Grant
Your Employment History & Relevant Experience
Next up in your resume is a section of your work history.
Depending on your background you should include past full-time and temporary jobs, also volunteer work and internships.
Make sure to list key information such as:
- Names of companies;
- Job titles and positions;
- Dates of employment;
- References from previous employers or mentors.
Don’t forget to note relevant experience that you gained through activities in university society or extracurricular work. This shows employers that you possess the required skills they seek and increases your chances of getting the position you want.
If you struggle on where to start, look into successful resume CV examples online and borrow everything you need.
Your Skills & Interests
Here, it’s good to mention the transferable abilities you’ve acquired during your university studies such as:
- Time management and productivity;
- The ability to work solo or as a team player;
- Presentation skills.
Another important tip is to list your interests and hobbies. That way potential employers get a sense of who you are as a person. As said before, refrain from using clichés.
Instead of writing: “I like playing chess” try to provide more detailed description like: “Playing chess regularly has allowed me to improve my patience and long-term planning which transcends into other areas like work and university”.
A helpful tip is to add a paragraph listing achievements and experiences that do not fall under the other listed categories. As there is no official format for an undergraduate CV, simply shape it however it suits you as long as it accentuates your qualities and experiences.
Include the following in this section:
- Press publications or citations
- Studies Abroad
- Lab or Specialized Skills
- Research Experience/Techniques
- Membership or Professional Connections
- Languages certificates
The last part of your undergraduate CV should include a section with references. Positive evaluations from mentors and faculty instructors will undoubtedly increase your chances to be chosen for the job or grant you’re applying for.
It is important to ask for permission from said references before listing their name, title, and contact information.
Dr Michelle Adams, Chair of Neurobiology, University of Leicester
+44 116 784 2593
In conclusion, knowing how to write a compelling undergraduate CV can shift the tides in your career path. With these tips, you should be able to tailor a strong resume which will undoubtedly help you land your dream job.