High School Resume for College Application—College Resume 101

A college resume template that gets you in the door. Write your high school resume fast, with expert tips and good + bad examples.

Tom Gerencer
Tom Gerencer
High School Resume for College Application—College Resume 101

Here’s a college resume that stands out like Brie Larson in a Starbucks.

 

How?

 

Most college resumes are cookie-cutter.

 

They focus on GPA and work experience.

 

Bad idea.

 

Want to get interviewed?

 

List awesome things you don’t even know you did.

 

This guide will show you:

  • A college resume example better than most.
  • How to write a resume for college that gets you interviewed.
  • How to pick and list activities on resumes so you turn heads like Macklemore.
  • The fastest way to get your resume for high school students noticed.

 

college application resume example

 

Free College Application Resume Template

 

Leighton Pliego

 

Personal Info

 

Address:
2317 Edsel Road
Los Angeles, CA 90017
Phone: 213-968-0795
Email: leightonpliego@gmail.com
linkedin.com/in/leightonpliego
twitter.com/leightonpliego

 

Summary:

 

Enthusiastic student social media professional seeking to energize Pitzer College's student body with proven leadership skills. Founded and ran a social fundraising organization that raised $27,000 for childhood cancer. Varsity track team captain with A+ avg. in English & Physics.

 

Education:

 

New West Charter School, Los Angeles, CA
2014–2019

  • Maintained A+ average in all Physics, English, and History classes.
  • Commended by 4 teachers for communication skills.
  • Co-Captain, Varsity Track Team.
  • Combined SAT scores 1300 (700 Verbal, 650 Math).
  • Graduating in May of 2019.
  • GPA 3.3

 

Activities

 

Founder, Operator
Drop the Elbow on Cancer
2015–Present

  • Founded/run cancer-fighting fundraising campaign on social media.
  • Organized community of 1,400 Mixed Martial Arts fighters to collect donations.
  • Raised $27,000 for children's cancer research to date.
  • Created Facebook and LinkedIn presence with 18,000 followers.

 

Founder, Leader
Robotron Robotics Club
2011–2015

  • Created and led small robotics club with local peers for 4 years.
  • Built 15 robots, including robotic arm with MegaPi mainboard.
  • Held 40+ bracketed competitions, raising membership 60%.

 

Waiter
Weathervane Restaurant
2016–2018

  • Scored 99% in Dale Carnegie customer service training.
  • Frequent high earner, earning most tips per shift.
  • Maintained 95% positive customer comment score.

 

Athletics

 

  • Avid surfer. Surfed 60 days/yr since age 13. Performed own board-maintenance, fixing all dings/cracks with resin/fiberglass and full-face respirator.
  • Devoted cyclist. Have logged 4,000+ miles, maintaining own bike and gear.
  • Accomplished kayaker and water skier.

 

Interests

 

  • Read 473 books from multiple genres since age 8.
  • Pursued passion for castle ruins during trip to Hungary, mapping 12.
  • Learned 50 useful Romanian words/phrases during family trip.

 

Hard Skills: Writing, Video Production, Leadership, MS Office

 

Soft Skills: Interpersonal Skills, Time Management, Listening

 

 

Now here’s how to write a high school resume for college applications:

 

1. Pick the Best College Resume Format

 

Warning:

 

Your resume format must grab them at a glance.

 

  • Choose the reverse-chronological resume format. It puts your best features first.
  • Use the best resume fonts like Arial or Cambria, in 10–14pt. Add big headings, white space, and 1-inch margins.
  • Write your resume header first. Add name, address, phone, email, and social media links. No photo.
  • Add a college resume objective, then education, then activities and job experience.
  • List bonuses like hobbies, volunteer work, and publications. They show a post-millennial can get things done.
  • Write a one-page teenage resume unless you’ve got more achievements than Zendaya.

Expert Hint: Save your resume as a PDF. Using a high school resume template PDF used to be bad. In 2019 they’re machine-readable.

2. Write a College Resume Objective That Hurts

 

75,000.

 

That’s how many college application forms the average top-10 school gets.

 

The rest aren’t far behind.

 

Your college admissions resume must stand out like galaxy print.

 

Do it with a resume objective for high school students that shines.

 

These resume examples for students nail it:

 

College Resume Objective—Example

Good Example
Enthusiastic student social media professional seeking to energize Pitzer College's student body with proven leadership skills. Founded and ran a social fundraising organization that raised $27,000 for childhood cancer. Varsity track team captain with A+ avg. in English & Physics.
Bad Example
Passionate high school graduate with 3.3 GPA and 1300 combined SAT scores. Graduating from high school in May of 2019. Enjoy surfing and bike riding. Have worked as a waiter at the Weathervane Restaurant for 2 years.

The first of those isn’t some generic resume for college applications. That’s Emma Watson Junior.

 

But they’re both the same kid.

 

The college admission resume screener will run, not walk, to show it to the Dean.

 

Don’t have activities for a resume objective like that?

 

You do. You just can’t see them.

 

Yet.

Expert Hint: Don’t make your college resume objective first. Build it after the rest of your high school resume for college. Then you’ll have a full curriculum to pick from.

3. List Activities on Resumes for College

 

Disaster!

 

Here’s the typical college application resume:

  • SAT Scores
  • GPA
  • High School Sports
  • Part-Time Job
  • Maybe Drama or a Stem Club

 

What’s wrong with that?

 

It won’t get noticed.

 

To make your resume for college blaze—

 

List resume activities that’ll make them hope you choose them.

 

These college resume examples for high school seniors show how:

 

Activities on a College Resume—Example

 

Good Example

Activities

 

Founder, Operator
Drop the Elbow on Cancer
2015–Present

  • Founded/run cancer-fighting fundraising campaign on social media.
  • Organized community of 1,400 Mixed Martial Arts fighters to collect donations.
  • Raised $27,000 for children's cancer research to date.
  • Created Facebook and LinkedIn presence with 18,000 followers.

 

Founder, Leader
Robotron Robotics Club
2011–2015

  • Created and led small robotics club with local peers for 4 years.
  • Built 15 robots, including robotic arm with MegaPi mainboard.
  • Held 40+ bracketed competitions, raising membership 60%.

 

Waiter
Weathervane Restaurant
2016–2018

  • Scored 99% in Dale Carnegie customer service training.
  • Frequent high earner, earning most tips per shift.
  • Maintained 95% positive customer comment score.

 

Athletics

 

  • Avid surfer. Surfed 60 days/yr since age 13. Performed own board-maintenance, fixing all dings/cracks with resin/fiberglass and full-face respirator.
  • Devoted cyclist. Have logged 4,000+ miles, maintaining own bike and gear
  • Accomplished kayaker and water skier.

 

Interests

 

  • Read 473 books from multiple genres since age 8.
  • Pursued passion for castle ruins during trip to Hungary, mapping 12.
  • Learned 50 useful Romanian words/phrases during family trip.
Bad Example

Activities

 

  • Surfing
  • Road biking
  • Robotics
  • Fund raising

The first of those college resume examples for high school students shows you’ll make the college better.

 

But that’s just a normal kid.

 

She just spent a few hours thinking about all the things she’s done that make her look like Rihanna at 18.

 

Skills to Put on a College Resume

 

Extra credit:

 

Don’t copy-paste resume skills from online lists.

 

The Dean will spot that from Serbia.

 

But for reference:

 

Skills to Put on a College Resume
Soft SkillsHard Skills
CommunicationTech Skills
Strong Work EthicComputer Skills
CollaborationMath
Time ManagementMS Office
Self-MotivatedPhysics
Fast LearnerScience
ListeningProgramming
Interpersonal SkillsHistory
Physically FitPublic Speaking
Problem SolvingSocial Media

Expert Hint: Don’t just list college resume activities. Add details and numbers. How many? How often? How much? What percent? Show the size of your accomplishment.

4. Turn Boring High School Education Into College Acceptance

 

Of course:

 

You need education section on a high school resume for college applications.

 

But—

 

There are two ways to do it.

 

Only one way gets you in.

 

These college resume samples show the difference:

 

Education on a High School Resume—Template 

Good Example

Education:

 

New West Charter School, Los Angeles, CA
2014–2018 

  • Maintained A+ average in all Physics, English, and History classes.
  • Commended by 4 teachers for expert communication skills.
  • Co-Captain, Varsity Track Team.
  • Combined SAT scores 1300 (700 Verbal, 650 Math).
Bad Example

Education

 

New West Charter School, Los Angeles, CA
2014–2019

  • Co-Captain of Track Team.
  • GPA 3.3
  • SAT Scores 1300

The first of those resume examples for students proves you’ll do the college proud.

Expert Hint: In a cover letter for high school students applying for college, show passion. That means talking up core achievements that prove your drive.

5. See What Else Goes on a Resume for College

 

What to put on a college resume?

 

Put anything that makes you stand out.

 

Here are some examples of what to put on resumes for college:

  • Class Rank if it’s impressive.
  • Jobs. Jobs show work ethic on college admission resumes.
  • Awards. Essay competitions, speaking, chess club, etc.
  • Volunteer Work. Red Cross, bake sales, crowdfunding.
  • Projects. Have you done public service or built a website? Projects show your dedication to a goal.
  • Social Media Followings. Have you built a following on Facebook, YouTube, or Twitter? That shows communication and persistence.
  • Passions. Have you done lots of paintings? Read a ton of books? Passions show you’ve got the drive to learn something that matters.
  • Sports. Don’t just list sports on a college resume. Add accomplishments like races won or records broken.
  • Positions. List captainships, Eagle Scout rank, or positions in church or 4-H groups. Those all energize high school resumes for college.
  • Hobbies. Are you good a fishing? Crafts? Hobbies prove you can work toward a goal.
  • Languages. Command of a foreign language looks great on college application resumes.

Expert Hint: Should you list junior high in a resume for college? Only to add impressive accomplishments that make the Dean sit straighter.

Key Points

 

For a college resume that gets you past the watchdogs:

  • Start with the college applicant resume template at the top. It’ll get attention.
  • Use the right college resume format. That way you’ll show you care enough to do things right.
  • List resume activities in your bullet points. Add details and numbers that show you’re not playing around.
  • Make your education section mean something. Show accomplishments in your high school student resume education section.

 

Got questions on how to write a high school resume that sparkles? Still not sure what goes on a resume for college? Leave a comment. We’ll be happy to reply.

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Tom Gerencer
Tom Gerencer
Career Writer at ResumeLab
Tom Gerencer is a career advice writer and a resume expert at ResumeLab. Tom has been featured on BBC News, NBC, The Economist, Business Insider, Fast Company, and dozens of other outlets. His insights, commentary, and articles reach over a million readers every month. With inside knowledge of key industry players and in-depth research, Tom helps job seekers with advice across all professions and career stages. Tom holds a degree in English from Colby College.

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