Resume Preparation Guide

Resume Purpose

Your internship resume serves as a selling tool; it should be used to market you, not to provide an autobiography. It is a well-organized summary of your credentials and experiences most relevant and significant to a potential employer. The rule of thumb is to limit the resume length to one page unless you have more than ten years of experience. Most college student will have a one page resume.

Your resume should be more focused on your academic achievements then on your work background.  You are marketing yourself as a college student.

Your goal is to produce a resume that is concise, well-ordered and communicates what you have contributed to your past employers. It will be used as the talking points in your interviewing sessions. Your resume should be written by you. You are the best person to accurately reflect your goals and achievements. Writing your resume also forces you to organize, analyze and articulate your experience.


NAME (in capital letters) include address, phone number and email address. Be sure to use a phone number where an employer can reach you. Be sure that your voice message is clear and professional. Email addresses should also be professional, use your UIC email or set up a new email address.

CHRONOLOGICAL FORMAT is most frequently used. Your experiences are listed in reverse chronological order (most recent first).


It is appropriate to summarize earlier positions that are of little relevance to your current objectives.

Rules for Capitalization, Abbreviations, Dates and Spelling

Observe the following points when writing your resume:

  • Spell out months, addresses (e.g. January, not Jan.; Street, not St.; Avenue, not Ave.; and Road, not Rd.).

  • Spell out Company and Corporation, not Co. nor Corp.

  • Abbreviate all states for the locations of your employers and schools (IL not Illinois). Spell out if used in your description (e.g. "sales responsibility for Indiana.").

  • Spell out names of foreign countries.

  • Do not use Chicagoland for Chicago or Chicago and its suburban areas.

  • Do not abbreviate the following:

    Bachelor of Arts, not BA
    Bachelor of Science, not BS
    Master of Science or Arts, not MS or MA

  • Capitalize languages and courses taken.

    • French, not french; Spanish, not spanish; Greek, not greek
    • Criminology, Law and Justice, Communication, English, Political Science, etc.

  • Write all years fully (e.g. 2010-2012, not 2010-12).

  • Names of universities/colleges and companies are capitalized. (e.g. University of Illinois at Chicago).


It is strongly recommended that you organize the contents of your resume in the following manner:

  • SUMMARY OF QUALIFICATIONS: Must be well focused and brief.
  • EDUCATION: Begin with UIC. For each school, include area(s) of concentration. 
  • INTERNSHIP EXPERIENCE: If you are currently interning or have completed an internship. 
  • RESEARCH EXPERIENCE:  If you are currently participating or have completed a research project.
  • STUDY ABROAD: Include the name of the country, university and time frame of your study abroad experience.
  • Add RELATED Coursework
  • WORK EXPERIENCE: Include full and part-time civilian and military work: Begin with the job title, followed by a concise statement of your accomplishments. Start a new line for each accomplishment and discriminate; include your top accomplishments only. Remember this is a personal summary, not your autobiography.
  • SKILLS: If appropriate, include computer skills, knowledge of foreign languages, laboratory and social media skills.
  • AWARDS/ACTIVITIES: Include a list of your honors, activities and awards. This list should include your accomplishments during your college years only, with few exceptions.

REMEMBER that employers look at a resume as if it were your first work assignment. They demand accuracy; that means perfect grammar, no typos, and no errors in information. Give them an example of the quality work you will do on the job.

Additional Tips

  • Do use specific action verbs.
  • Do use industry-specific language.
  • PROOFREAD, PROOFREAD, PROOFREAD your final draft and ask at least two other people to proofread it as well.
  • Do not over-design your resume. Beware of too many lines.
  • Do avoid word processing software templates.

REMEMBER to send resume and cover letter as one PDF file. Most application tracking systems only allow for a single document per applicant.