How to boost your college resume without lying isn’t hard, it just takes work and consistency.
Therefore, if you are willing to work and be consistent you can create a resume that showcases your skills, knowledge, and experience for a position without lying.
Lying on Resumes The New Normal?
Misrepresenting facts aka lying on college resumes is so popular nowadays you would think it’s the new normal.
However, lying on your resume is far from normal – it’s risky business!
In fact, employers are fighting back even harder nowadays.
Thus, it isn’t uncommon for an employer to fire an employee on the spot for embellishing qualifications and experience on a resume or even pursuing legal actions!
According to HG.org, in some cases, lying on a resume may provide your employer with legal grounds against you, the employee. Furthermore, there may be other consequences.
For, instance getting another job may become difficult if you are unable to use the employer as a reference due to the lie.
Plus, loss of professional licenses or potential barriers to gaining professional licenses.
Going to jail for lying on your resume is real
Case in point, a woman in Australia lied on her resume to land a $185,000 a year job, and she’s going to jail.
Yes, you heard right! She is going to jail!
So ladies and gents, the era of lying on your college resume to gain employment fresh out of college without serious consequences are quickly coming to an end.
Some employers are fighting back and it isn’t pretty.
However, don’t worry! Fortunately, there are ways to boost your College resume without lying.
Here’s how to get started!
Why college students are tempted to lie on their resumes
Firstly, is there any good reason to lie? Well, you may be surprised by a few answers to this question!
However, in general, lying complicates life. So why would college students want to complicate their life? After all, isn’t life after college difficult enough?
Well, yes life after college isn’t a walk in the park for every college graduate.
In fact, some college graduates are forced to move with their parents due to failure to secure a job offer substantial enough to support their lifestyle.
Now there are various reasons a recent college graduate may be tempted to lie on a resume however for the sake of this argument most lie to simply get ahead of other job applicants.
Is it fair? Not at all. Is it wrong? Yes, indeed. However, when an entry job is asking for five years of experience the temptation to misrepresent information on a resume becomes quite alluring.
According to a Checkster report, 78% of candidates lie about details on their resume – 78! how crazy is that!
Are the entry job requirements for recent college graduates really to blame
Entry job requirements over the years for the most part seem out of touch with reality.
Frankly, some of these entry job requirements are borderline ridiculous.
If an employer requires 5 years of experience for an entry position it really means the employer wants someone with experience without actually paying top dollar for that experience.
This logic isn’t implausible especially when you realize entry-level positions usually pay entry-level wages and some companies no longer train entry employees.
Overall, it’s a sad state of things for recent college graduates.
Unfortunately, now on top of attaining a college degree which in itself can be a hassle, companies also require years of experience most college internships during the summer just can’t fulfill.
So is an increase in outrageous job requirements for entry-level positions to blame for this increase in the number of job candidates lying on their resumes? Probably, we certainly can’t rule it out.
How to boost Your college resume without lying
Joining student organizations and attaining leadership positions in these student organizations can significantly boost your college resume.
However, not everyone gets to be the leader and in some cases, it’s just not sensible due to class load and prior commitments. So this list includes alternative methods you can do to boost your college resume including:
- Learn relevant technical skills required for your field
- Become technology savvy
- Complete certifications and/or licenses for your field
- Apply for work-study opportunities
- Seek internship opportunities even if you have to work for free
- Find a creative way to grow a personal brand online and/or offline
- Proofread and polish your resume
- Use resume writing service to improve your resume
- Ask the hiring agency to review and criticize your resume
- Highlight your quantifiable achievements proudly
- Simplify your resume by using a simple resume template
- Customize your resume to fit the job offer
- Declutter and modernize your resume
- Optimize with keywords
- Highlight and minimize resume content appropriately
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 1: Learning relevant technical skills required for your field
According to thebalancecareers.com technical skills are the abilities and knowledge needed to perform specific tasks.
They are practical and often relate to mechanical, information technology, mathematical, or scientific tasks.
Some examples include knowledge and know-how of Big Data Analysis, Coding, and Programming, Project Management, Social Media Management & Digital Marketing, and Technical Writing.
Therefore, firstly, learn relevant technical skills for your career choice.
For, instance if you’re a business student with dreams of becoming a Data Analysis then firstly becoming proficient in Microsoft Excel can significantly improve job prospects especially after graduation.
All in all, by developing relevant technical skills you can significantly boost your college resume without having to resort to faking it till you make it.
In fact, they will be very helpful to you when you apply for your first job fresh out of college and later on as you progress in your career.
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 2: Become technology savvy
Technology is the fastest-growing field right now. Therefore, becoming technology savvy should be a top priority for every college student.
However, becoming technology savvy doesn’t mean you have to learn every technology related to your field.
Instead, focus on the more prominent ones used by the companies you are interested in working for.
While this will definitely require some research and practice, your efforts will not be in vain.
In fact, the knowledge, and practical experience gained will make you a more valuable team player for your future employer.
Overall, becoming technology savvy is a great way to boost your college resume especially if you don’t have stellar grades, job experience, or extracurricular activities showing leadership skills.
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 3: Complete certifications and/or licenses for your field
Secondly, get certification or licenses directly related to your field of study. For, instance, if you’re pursuing your nursing degree then, by all means, getting an RN will significantly help you gain employment in your field.
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 4: Apply for work-study opportunities or student jobs on campus
Thirdly, apply for work-study opportunities! If work-study opportunities are available at your university, and you are not applying then you are forgoing an opportunity to increase your cash inflow in college.
More money in college is always welcome however let’s talk about job experience! Yes, experience! Work-study creates a great opportunity for you to work at the university and get paid.
Furthermore, if you’re staying on campus you save gas because you don’t have to leave campus to make money.
Therefore, during your first week on campus visit the university’s job website to search for work-study opportunities.
Also, consider visiting your department and asking directly for possible work-study opportunities for the semester.
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 5: Seek internship opportunities even if you have to work for free
Being successful in the job market after college can be challenging but the more you are prepared the better your chances are going to be.
Therefore, seeking internship opportunities even if you have to work for free is one of the strategies you should consider.
Now I know working for free can really suck, especially, if you’re a broke college student.
However, the experience you can gain from that internship can dramatically help you upgrade your college resume.
Additionally, give you the upper hand against other college graduates in your field who are applying for the same jobs you are applying for.
Therefore, if an internship directly related to your college major doesn’t pay if you can afford to work for free you should diffidently consider applying.
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 6: Find a creative way to grow a personal brand
Thanks to technology, finding a creative way to grow a personal brand is now easier than ever.
Therefore, if you are having trouble finding an internship in your field consider researching creative outlets you can showcase your skills to your potential employer.
For instance, if you are a marketing major, and you’re interested in content marketing then consider starting a blog where you can create useful content in a particular niche that could, later on, be monetized.
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 7: Proofread and polish your resume
You will be amazed by how much you can improve your resume and therefore improve your chance of landing your dream job by just ensuring you proofread and polish your resume.
Life is too short to miss out on your dream job because you used “to” instead of “too”.
Plus, considering the number of resume writing services available online, you can outsource this task easily nowadays.
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 8: Use Resume Writing service to improve your resume
Now we get it may you’re broke, so you don’t have the money to hire one of these resume writing services.
That’s understandable – we’re been there especially after graduating from college.
Minus college sometimes in general – you just don’t have extra funds.
So what do you do! Life isn’t always fair and life can be difficult especially when you don’t have enough financial resources to cover your day-to-day expenses far less paying for resume writing services.
Therefore, if you cannot afford a resume writing service, consider asking a friend, family member, an associate, a stranger, a current or past teacher to review and constructively criticize your resume.
Yes, I said constructively critic, because we all need some tough love from time to time because without it improving becomes challenging.
So if you don’t have the coins to pay for resume writing services seek help from others and if you don’t want to include the folks above in your business you also have other options, for instance, a hiring agency!
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 9: Ask the hiring agency to review and criticize your resume
Yes, a hiring agency can help you improve your resume dramatically.
However, you must be a proactive candidate who is eager to get a job and most importantly be willing to ask them for help if you need it.
Now you may be thinking why the hiring agency, and why would a hiring agency help me of all people fix my resume?
Firstly, they review thousands of resumes yearly and help match candidates with employers, so this function enhances their ability to distinguish a good resume from a bad resume.
Plus, if you get hired they get paid! Yes, they get paid, so it’s really in their interest and yours of course for you to get a job as quickly as possible.
Therefore, if you don’t have anyone to ask to review your resume consider using a hiring agency – the best ones will be happy you asked.
Now just a warning some hiring agencies may not directly sit with you to review your resume instead, they may recommend resources to help you improve your resume and that’s fine also.
For instance, they may recommend a book, or a website containing free resources.
All, in all, that’s very helpful because you now have the opportunity to learn to improve your resume on your own and can now help others like your friends and family members.
How cool is that?
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 10: Highlight your quantifiable achievements proudly
If you got it then show it right? Well, the same applies to your resume! Hence, if you got then show it! Don’t be shy because guess what? The other job applicants who are your competitors may not be so shy.
So take a minute to gather your thoughts, grab a piece of paper and a pen then start listing your quantifiable achievements on your resume, because you need to advertise your quantifiable achievements and how these past quantifiable achievements can help create value for your potential employer.
For, instance, did you graduate in the top 5% of your class, or were you the student of the year for three consecutive years?
What about the year you help your college group raise thousands of dollars for charity? Well, list these quantifiable achievements on your resume! Don’t be shy!
While you may want to stay humble about your achievements – don’t do it! A resume isn’t the place to be humble!
This is a competition, meaning you are most likely competing with many candidates. Therefore, don’t be the shy candidate – show off!
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 11: Simplify your resume by using a simple resume template
Resume templates can help your showcase your skills, knowledge, and experience or they can be distracting.
So, how do you find a resume template that isn’t distracting? Or, better yet how do you create a resume template that isn’t distracting?
Well, thankfully there are options.
If you just want to buy an eye-
Unfortunately, some of these resume template builder services can be costly.
However, if you are on a budget Etsy is a good place to start looking for affordable resume templates.
Now for the job applicant who wants to create a unique resume template they can easily update, I recommend using Canva or Pic Monkey.
These two graphic design platforms can help anyone create an amazing resume template.
Therefore, if you want to boost your resume, consider simplifying your resume by using a simple resume template.
You will be surprised how much better your resume will look and how easy it will be to skim through and read.
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 12: Customize your resume to fit the job offer
It isn’t uncommon for job candidates to have several versions of their resume, whether they are applying for similar or different positions within an industry.
Now while customizing a resume to fit every job offer can be time-consuming, it can give a job candidate an advantage over other job candidates applying for the same position.
What advantage really? Well, one major advantage is skimmability.
A customized resume is a highly skimmable resume that highlights a candidate’s strengths and minimizes their weaknesses easily.
This type of resume makes it easier for the recruiter to qualify a candidate for the job offer because analyzing the candidate’s resume was easy and quick.
For candidates, it puts the resume at the top of the pile and for recruiters, it saves time.
Recruiters go through hundreds of resumes a day and a day only has 24 hours.
Thus, they really don’t have much time to analyze a resume.
Therefore, the job candidates who want to stand out from the crowd must submit an eye-catching, customized resume that fits the job offer, or else their resume goes to the bottom of the pile.
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 13: Declutter and modernize your resume
Declutter and modernize your resume by removing outdated content. For instance remove, “references available upon request.”
If we have to be honest here “references available upon request” was always pointless content on a resume.
In fact, there was no strong reason to add it, simply because if an employer selected you for a position, references become important at this point and not before.
Plus, at that point, the request is made by the employer.
In addition, there was never a point to add “references available upon request” to a resume because who’s going to deny the request if they are selected for a job they applied for?
Another resume content you can remove is the objective section.
Remove it and replace it with a summary of your skills and abilities that qualifies you for the position.
Overall, declutter and modernize your resume by removing irrelevant content that doesn’t help you get the job.
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 14: Optimize with keywords
The increased use of resume ai scanners or resume ai checkers has made getting your resume directly in the hands of recruiters ten times harder.
However, thankfully by using keywords you can significantly improve the chances of your resume being seen by the recruiter.
Relevant keywords based on the job position help resume ai scanners or resume ai checkers find your resume.
Without relevant keywords, your resume becomes invisible.
Therefore, if you want to boost your college resume dramatically ensure the right keywords are added to your resumes.
How To Boost Your College Resume Without Lying 15: Highlight and minimize resume content appropriately
We all have strengths and weaknesses – so no one is perfect. However, the job application process nowadays can unintentionally encourage you to create a perfect version of yourself that doesn’t exist.
Thankfully you don’t have to scrum to that pressure.
Instead, choose to highlight and minimize your resume content appropriately based on the requirement of the job and your current strengths and weaknesses.
Overall, doing so can help you create a more powerful humanized resume, that will make you relatable.
Overall, You Don’t Have To Lie
You don’t have to lie to boost your college resume – you are a smart, skillful, creative, resourceful, and dedicated college student who is ready to use all the opportunities available to upgrade your resume!
Next read: What Not To Do As A College Student