How To Write the Best College Admissions Resume (With Template)

By Indeed Editorial Team

January 31, 2022

A person writes in a notebook while sitting at a desk in their home.

Although resumes are important tools for seeking employment, they’re not usually associated with the college admissions process. Recently, however, colleges have become more interested in seeing student resumes as part of their overall application.In this article, we explain what a college admissions resume is and how to write one, as well as offer a template and example to help guide you.

What is a college admissions resume?

A college admissions resume is a document describing a student's academic and job-related skills and experiences and typically expected as part of your college admissions application. An admissions resume demonstrates to a college that you’re capable of academic success through your overview.

Unlike a job-seeking resume, a college admissions resume should focus on academics rather than work experiences. If the student has held a job (or jobs) they should list them, but the bulk of the resume will describe academic achievements and school-related activities.

What to include in a college admissions resume

College admissions resumes should include these elements and follow this structure:

Elements

  • Grades

  • Past jobs

  • Awards

  • Academic activities

  • Extracurricular activities

  • Community service and volunteering

  • Special skills

  • Test scores

Structure

  • Heading (your name)

  • Academics

  • Activities (academic and extracurricular)

  • Jobs

  • Volunteer work

  • Skills

  • Awards and accolades

Related: Best Jobs for College Students

How to write a college admissions resume

Use the following steps to write your college admissions resume:

1. Create a template

Begin by outlining your information into categories. Leave space below each category so you can insert any respective achievements. If you need help constructing a template, refer to the example below.

2. Research the college

Some colleges may request—or even require—special information in your resume. For example, a performing arts college may want a list of your recent roles and performances. Make sure you know what special information you’ll need to include.

3. Gather information

Look at your template with the list of categories you outlined in step one. Identify the information you want to include about yourself in each area. List the information in reverse chronological order, with your most current experience at the top.

4. Add titles and dates

Add necessary titles and dates to the list of items you gathered in step three. For example, if you worked at a fast-food restaurant after school for several years, list your job title and the specific years of work.

5. Fill in action-oriented bullets

Add action-oriented bullets to explain what you did in jobs, academic activities, extracurricular activities and volunteer work. These should be concise and clear.

6. Revise your resume

Read through all the information you’ve included. Make sure your resume is no longer than one page. If it is, remove some information or revise and shorten your action-oriented bullets.

7. Ask someone to review it

Find a knowledgeable adult, like a parent or teacher, to review your resume for content and format. Fix any errors they might discover.

Related: How To Write Your High School Resume for College Applications

College admissions resume template

This template demonstrates how to structure a college admissions resume:

Name 
Address 
Phone number 
Email address

Education

  • High school name

  • High school address

  • Graduation date

  • GPA

  • Class rank

  • Test score(s)

  • Honors

Academic and Extracurricular Activities

  • Activity 1: Date and description

  • Activity 2: Date and description

  • Activity 3: Date and description

  • Activity 4: Date and description

Work Experience

  • Job 1: Date and description

  • Job 2: Date and description

  • Job 3: Date and description

  • Job 4: Date and description

Volunteering

  • Job 1: Date and description

  • Job 2: Date and description

  • Job 3: Date and description

  • Job 4: Date and description

Special Skills

  • Skill 1

  • Skill 2

  • Skill 3

  • Skill 4

Awards

  • Award 1

  • Award 2

  • Award 3

  • Award 4

College admissions resume example

This example uses the included template to structure a college admissions resume:

Allison Graham  
New City OH, 11111 
555-555-5555 
allison.graham@e-mail.com

Education 
New City High School  
New City, OH 11111

  • Expected graduation: June 2022

  • GPA: 3.9/4.0

  • Class rank: 8/241

  • ACT composite score: 29

  • Expected to graduate with honors

Academic and Extracurricular Activities 

  • Quiz Bowl: 2019-2022 
    Won the state championship in 2020; team captain in 2021

  • Cross country team: 2019-2022 
    Competed in state cross country event in 2020

  • Ski club: 2019-2022 
    Participated in all ski club events and activities from 2019 to 2022

  • Community choir: 2016-2022 (Alto) 
    Performed with the community choir in a competition in Canada in 2020

Work Experience 

  • Farm Fresh Restaurant: 2019-2021
    Greeted guests and managed seating schedule

  • Babysitter: 2017-2021 
    Watched, fed, bathed and comforted children (ages 5-8) for several hours at a time

Volunteering 

  • House to Home: 2016-2022 
    Constructed homes for those in need

  • Sing for Seniors: 2016-2022 
    Performed songs for seniors in care facilities with a community choir

Special Skills

  • Type 80 words per minute

  • Proficient in word processing 

  • Beginner photographer

Awards

  • National Honor Society

  • Bright Scholar Award

  • New City Scholarship

Related: High School Resume Tips and Example

College admissions resume tips

Keep the following tips in mind as you write your college admissions resume:

  • Tailor your resume: Each college you apply to may ask for slightly different information on your resume.

  • Be concise: Your resume is simply an overview. Other application documents can go more in-depth about you and your experience.

  • Be honest: Include only accurate information. Avoid embellishment and exaggeration.

  • Proofread: Review your resume before submitting it, ensuring it’s grammatically correct and all necessary information is included.

  • Avoid linking to social media: Unless it’s for a job-specific social media site or created specifically for college admissions purposes, avoid including your personal social media accounts on your resume.


Browse more articles