Putting together a good CV can be a difficult challenge, particularly while you’re in school. University students have many demands on their time from academics, and the job market can seem far away. For many job seekers, however, just having a degree won’t be enough to earn a position after graduation. Consider the following ways to boost your CV while you’re in school to ensure your application floats to the top of the pile once your studies are over.
– Demonstrate mastery of business software. Programs like Microsoft Excel and Intuit QuickBooks are standard operating tools in many businesses. Make sure you have a solid grasp on them before you graduate, and complete projects that will show your skills to a potential employer.
– Show an entrepreneurial spirit. Many employers today want self-starters: people who can conceive ideas and execute them on their own. You can show that in a nearly endless variety of ways. It can be as simple as holding a one-day fundraiser for your favorite charity, or as complex as starting a business or taking on a project for a local company.
– Specialize. If you know what you want to do after graduation, you can help yourself stand out by taking highly specialized courses applicable to your industry. Besides giving you practical knowledge for your career and allowing you to indulge your passion for a subject, completing such classes can make you attractive to employers seeking candidates with the latest knowledge in an emerging field.
– Look into joining professional associations. Most industries have one or more major professional associations. Some will let you join as a student, while others require you to be working in the field. Either way, look for an opportunity to get involved with them, even if it’s as a volunteer. Professional associations will provide you with a CV boost and likely give you a leg up when networking as well.