Question about my Resume for co op

darkhunter139

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I have a few questions about what to include on my resume. I am a software engineering major that is going to be applying for a coop job next month. I am a little unsure what to put on my resume, I have only completed two years of school so far and I don't really know a lot of different languages.

Here is what a have for my computer skills section, it will probably be mostly programming jobs I will be applying to.

Computer Skills
• Programming languages - Java, JavaScript, C++
• Technologies - XML, HTML
• Software - Word, Excel, Visual Studio

I have worked a lot with HTML, C++ and javascript so far but not so much with XML, and Java. I took a java and XML class two years ago but I am pretty rusty with them by now. Would it be better to take these of my resume completely or should I add another section Called Limited experience or something along those lines?

I also took a few classes in visual basic and ASP.net but I don't feel comfortable including them either. I think it could help me if I added them without seeming like I am an expert, is this a good idea and what would be the best way to do that?

Thanks for any advice!
 

BDV

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Write about the projects you did and what you actually did yourself.
If you get an interview, be ready to talk in detail about those projects.

List of skills really means nothing.
 

darkhunter139

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Write about the projects you did and what you actually did yourself.
If you get an interview, be ready to talk in detail about those projects.

List of skills really means nothing.

Okay thanks!
 

ambientZ

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As an interviewer of co-ops, im generally going to ask about the programming languages in the order you list them.

Unless the last things in the list are really relevant to my location, i've probably moved on to another topic.

Its better for me if your stronger skills are listed first, instead of alphabetically or something.
You could even divide it into your strong languages, and others.

This might be poor resume advice, but its how i go through it. If you are weak on the first language in the list, it sets up the theme for the rest of the interview.
 

eon

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I personally would drop the Word and Excel skills unless those were listed as required skills on the job listing.
 

ameoba

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When you're writing a resume for a co-op position, keep in mind that everyone else is coming from the same basic position - a few years of school, no experience, etc. Highlight the things that set you apart - previous work experience, undergrad research, open-source project contributions or even learning things (languages, OSes, web pages, etc) outside of the core curriculum. More importantly, write a good cover letter that highlights larger projects you've worked on & makes you sound intelligent and motivated.
 

PTNL

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Listing just markup languages under the "Technologies" point is wrong. Consider grouping those with the "Programming Languages" into a group name like "Competencies". Your college experience is important, so list some projects and significant classes you have taken. If you have done any personal or side projects, list a summary sentence for each of those.

Good luck with the co-op search!
 

dogbert_2001

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If you're sending resumes electronically or there's a chance they will be scanned, I would leave things like Word and Excel on there. They have software that looks for specific keywords. Unless you're hurting for space, leave them on there.
 

noobman

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If you're applying for a co-op job in school, the odds are that you don't have a ton of experience. A lot of the people I did co-op with back in school were applying to their very first jobs. In fact, I'd be willing to bet that you probably only have 1-2 years of university under your belt as it is.

What you should do is prepare a one page resume at this stage in your career. List any work experience you may have, plus any volunteer experience and extracurricular activities you've taken part in. A list of key skills is good to have at the top, especially if you've taught yourself stuff outside of your curriculum. Maybe you're an experienced web developer, mobile app developer, or videogame developer, and developed some relevant skills doing that. That's all stuff that will make you stand out from the rest of the bunch, so definitely use it!

You might also want to include your current GPA in your education section, but only if it's good! My school always recommended that we include our transcript as well. That way the employer could look at our grades, and almost more importantly look at the type of courses we had taken to get a sense of what else we had learned (object oriented analysis & design, data structures, operating systems, etc)

For the first co-op job/internship, employers are often looking for someone malleable who can learn things quickly and communicate well with the rest of the team. It certainly helps if you've got some experience, but if not don't worry about it. A positive attitude and the willingness + ability to pick things up quickly is vital at this point.

As for listing MS Office knowledge as a skill... don't. Knowing how to use Word is expected. If you have advanced knowledge with Excel and are well versed in Access and Visio, you can definitely list those.
 

darkhunter139

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If you're applying for a co-op job in school, the odds are that you don't have a ton of experience. A lot of the people I did co-op with back in school were applying to their very first jobs. In fact, I'd be willing to bet that you probably only have 1-2 years of university under your belt as it is.

What you should do is prepare a one page resume at this stage in your career. List any work experience you may have, plus any volunteer experience and extracurricular activities you've taken part in. A list of key skills is good to have at the top, especially if you've taught yourself stuff outside of your curriculum. Maybe you're an experienced web developer, mobile app developer, or videogame developer, and developed some relevant skills doing that. That's all stuff that will make you stand out from the rest of the bunch, so definitely use it!

You might also want to include your current GPA in your education section, but only if it's good! My school always recommended that we include our transcript as well. That way the employer could look at our grades, and almost more importantly look at the type of courses we had taken to get a sense of what else we had learned (object oriented analysis & design, data structures, operating systems, etc)

For the first co-op job/internship, employers are often looking for someone malleable who can learn things quickly and communicate well with the rest of the team. It certainly helps if you've got some experience, but if not don't worry about it. A positive attitude and the willingness + ability to pick things up quickly is vital at this point.

As for listing MS Office knowledge as a skill... don't. Knowing how to use Word is expected. If you have advanced knowledge with Excel and are well versed in Access and Visio, you can definitely list those.

Good advice, thank you! I will add my current GPA as it is pretty good but I think the employers will have access to my class list/GPA anyway (I need to find that out).

I only have two years at my current school under my belt but have not really worked on any big projects yet which worries me a little. I have one I am working on now but will probably not be completely finished by the time I have to interview. Everyone else is most likely in the same position though.
 

PTNL

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As for listing MS Office knowledge as a skill... don't. Knowing how to use Word is expected. If you have advanced knowledge with Excel and are well versed in Access and Visio, you can definitely list those.
I agree with your sentiments, but disagree with the decision for the same reason dogbert listed. Many interviewers or initial screeners (electronic or human) are trained to look for keywords; omitting those competencies could get the resume removed from the candidate pool.
 

noobman

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I agree with your sentiments, but disagree with the decision for the same reason dogbert listed. Many interviewers or initial screeners (electronic or human) are trained to look for keywords; omitting those competencies could get the resume removed from the candidate pool.

I hadn't thought about that. Good advice.
 

pat1006

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Feb 17, 2006
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It has been awhile since I went on my first co-op (just got back from my third one now) and I think the most important thing on my resume when I did my first co-op was my GPA. I also had a relevant course work section as well as some work experience (being a ta, working at subway, working at a tv station). I recommend having your GPA only if it is above a 3.0. Many places I applied to required a 3.5 or above to even be considered! The relevant course work was good because it gave them a sense of the projects I did and during interviews I could talk about class projects.
 
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