Podcast Resume Hints for Law Students

August 2, 2007

Resumes for law students are specialized, and general resume guides do not always offer the best advice for law students.

Listen to the full audio recording here

Resume organization

  1. Personal information
    1. Name, address, phone numbers, and e-mail addresses at the top.
  2. Academic information
    1. List in reverse chronological order.
    2. Full name of your academic institution and the year that you received your degree or the date you expect to receive you degree.
    3. Include all your academic honors, extra curricular activities and so forth immediately following the listing for each school on your resume.
  3. Work experience
    1. Include both your paid and volunteer law-related work in reverse chronological order.
    2. Non-law related work experience.
  4. Personal interests
    1. I prefer resumes that include a personal interest section.

Resume layout

  1. The best resumes are easy to read because they make good use of white space.
  2. Font
    1. Use only one font on a resume.
    2. Use bolding, italics, underlining, and size to add emphasis and readability.
    3. Use a  reasonable font size.
    4. Size 10, 11, or 12 point font.
  3. Limit resume to one page.
  4. Professionals with prior work experience should:
    1. Include the lessons you learned at prior job.
    2. Draw connections between those lessons and what you believe will be skills that you need as a lawyer.
    3. Show that you progressed in your career and gained responsibility

Resume and cover letter

  1. Your resume and cover letter are a matched set
    1. Think of your resume as the fact sheet, while your cover letter tells an intriguing story.
    2. Resume and cover letter are the first writing examples you are submitting to a potential employer.
    3. Proofread: no typos or grammatical errors.
    4. Consider having two or more versions of your resume, depending on where applying.
  2. When submitting the resume and cover letter electronically
    1. Convert the document to PDF
    2. Resume will always appear exactly as you want it to appear when the document is opened.
Resumes for law students are specialized, and general resume guides do not always offer the best advice for law students.
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