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What NOT to Write: Ten Rookie Resume Mistakes


One of the frustrating aspects of seeking resume advice is the likelihood of receiving conflicting feedback from different people. Your mom says to leave off your GPA, but your advisor says to list it. Your teacher said that your student dining job is irrelevant, but your supervisor says you should definitely include it. How do you know what recruiters actually want to see, and do they even agree on what is relevant?

One of the benefits of using ECS is that we are directly connected to engineering employers, and our advice is specifically tailored toward what they want to see. (For example, we would side with your advisor and your supervisor in the examples above). Although there certain aspects of your resume that are up for debate...almost everyone would agree that they don't want to see the following items.

  1. Unprofessional or Out of Date Contact Info: Take a quick look … 
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How ATS impacts your job search

With a competitive job market on our hands, it’s important to be aware of all aspects of the job search process, and how to put your best foot forward. With this being said, the Wall Street Journal recently found that about 90% of all Fortune 500 companies are now using something called “Applicant Tracking Software”.  ATS screens, parses, scores and ranks uploaded resumes by matching job requirements to resumes that document matching skills and experience. The systems used are typically programmed to scan for keywords, previous employers, experience, and schools the candidate has attended.

The following are some “dos” and “don’ts” to ensure your resume is compatible with Applicant Tracking Software:


  • Read the job description and include keywords within the job (keywords refer to skills or attributes preferred for the position, for example, “MATLAB” or “Leadership”)
  • Use ECS templates (which are preformatted to be ATS friendly; can be found … 
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Resume Tips for International Students

Today's post is written by ECS Career Advisor, Kaitlin Schafer, who advises intern, co-op, and full-time employment seeking students.

A well prepared-resume is critical to landing an interview. Ensure your format fits U.S. standards by being aware of the following differences:

U.S. Resume 

  • Highlights achievements, academic background, and work experience related to desired work position
  • One page in length per degree (Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD)
  • Does not include TOEFL score, photo, marital status, age, race, gender, or religion (employers are not allowed to base hiring decisions on these qualities)

International Resume          

  • Provides extensive chronological details regarding academic and work experience
  • Multiple pages in length
  • May include photo, marital status, age, race, etc.       

Additional Tips
See the resume sample for an international student below.

International Student Resume

Employers are concerned about verbal and written communication skills. They may assume that an international … 

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Avoid the Resume Database Black Hole!

There are numerous ways to apply to jobs—through your CareerEngine account, at a career fair, via a job search engine, or by directly visiting a company’s website.  When you visit a company’s website to apply, applicant tracking software is typically used to scan the information on your resume.  This means there are guidelines that you should follow to ensure that your resume is “universal” enough to be scanned by this kind of software. 

How to optimize your resume for applicant tracking systems:

  • Use language from the job description and include “keywords” related to your field: computer skills, software packages or technical knowledge from classes or work experiences.
  • Choose a functional (aka commonly used) font (recommended:  Arial or Times New Roman) in a standard size (between 10 and 12 point). 
  • Include your name as the first line of the page and your contact information at the top … 
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Resume Spring Cleaning

Today’s blog is written by ECS graduate advisor, Tara McCarron…

Spring is in the air! Before you get excited about hitting Oval Beach, remember periodically refreshing your resume throughout the year is an easy way to track your accomplishments and improve your job search. So start the quarter right and make your first spring cleanup project your resume.

Here are few questions and tips to help you update your resume:


  • Do you have any new work experience to add to my resume? – This could be internship or co-op or even work unrelated to engineering. If you’ve co-oped or interned, make these experiences stand out by listing them near the top of your resume and using action verbs to describe your accomplishments.

  • What is your most recent GPA? – Be sure to update your GPA at the beginning of each academic term. Don’t forget to add if you’ve made … 
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