Resume Writing


  • Unless you have a very good reason, don’t use anything but a chronological format.
    • A variety of styles—create your own instead of using a template on Word
    • No complete sentences
    • No “I”
    • Be honest—Resume fraud has reached epidemic proportions, and employers are using more rigorous screening techniques.


  • Identifying Information
    • List your name, addresses and telephone numbers of your present and permanent address, and your e-mail.
    • Use a larger font size for your name.
    • Career objective
      • Your career objective should indicate
        • the type of position you desire,
        • the kind of ministry or organization for which you want to work and
        • possibly a couple of skills you will use.
        • Example:  Seeking a position in youth ministry with a church that can use an individual with a strong work ethic and a desire to lead teenagers to faith in Christ.


Education or Experience dilemma—Present information first that is the most impressive and/or most important to the job for which you are applying. Typically, college students begin with education.


  • Education should be listed in reverse order with the last college you attended listed first. Do NOT include high school.
  • List college, city and state, and degree you received.  Check the catalog to verify correct wording of degree.
  • If the resume is for part-time work or internships prior to graduation, use the inclusive dates of attendance at the institution.
  • Include teaching practicums, field experiences, or internships.
  • If you are responsible for 20% or more of your college expenses through scholarships, grants, loans, or work, place this information at the end of education section.


  • Experience should be listed in reverse order with the last job you held listed first.
  • List organization, your title, city and state, and inclusive dates of employment for each job.
  • Under each listing, use bullets and active verbs to describe duties.
  • Include full- and part-time jobs, self employment.
  • Use past tense for past jobs and present tense for present jobs.
  • More recent resumes I have looked at use active statements that show results
    • Developed a new filing system that reduced paperwork by 50 percent.
    • Handled all customer complaints and resolved all product order discrepancies.


  • You may have an additional section that is specific to you.  Options could include
    • Scholarships and Awards
    • Interests and Activities
    • Professional Affiliations and Activities
    • Volunteer Work, etc.


  • Keep your resume to a page, if possible.
  • Balance material
  • Use standout headings
  • Allow adequate white space
  • Choose easy to read type.  You may vary fonts and sizes.
  • Use quality paper.  Acceptable colors are white, cream, gray, or light pastel.  Show sample.
  • Do not include references on your resume—do not even add references furnished upon request.  Submit on a clean sheet of matching paper or carry them with you to the interview
  • Avoid personal information. However, ministry resumes often require age and marital status.
  • Must be perfect!  A misspelling can be the kiss of death—right in the circular.