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Resume Guide


  • Resumes should be only one page if you are an undergraduate or MBA student (unless you are in your late 20s or older and have had significant full-time work experience)

    • Font sizes should not be too small, because potential employers over 40 may not be able to read small print.  Use fonts of 10-12 points, except for your name at the top of the page.  You can use smaller fonts for blank lines to adjust your spacing.

    • Do not use unusual fonts or ink colors other than black.  The paper should be white.  Excess creativity in a Finance resume is a negative.  Calibri, Arial, and Times New Roman are commonly used resume fonts.

  • Don’t leave huge areas of empty space – however, having some white space helps make a resume readable.  Your resume should be aligned on both the right and left sides to achieve a balanced look.

  • Dates should be on the right hand side of the page and should align down the page.  For dates, you only need the month and year (March 2021, for example)

  • Margins should be approximately 3/4 inch on each side and ¾ inch or 1 inch on the top and bottom


  • Top Section

    • Your name should be in large bold letters at the top.  Use only your middle initial, unless you have a very common name (James Smith, for example).

    • Underneath your name should be the following information:  your e-mail address and cellphone number (landline number, if applicable) 

    • Include both your Blacksburg college address and your home address (parents’ home or where you go on breaks).  Separate the addresses into two blocks in the upper corners, with your name and e-mail address in the middle.  You should include your non-Blacksburg (parents’) address because your interviewer may be from your hometown, which could help you. 

      • If you are taking classes remotely from home, just include your home address, which can be centered under your name at the top of the page.

      • If you live full-time in Blacksburg, then just include the Blacksburg address.

    • The rest of your resume should be organized into the following categories:  “Education”, “Work Experience”, “Activities and Honors”, and “Skills and Other”.

  • Education

    • List university name and location first – people want to know where you are going to school.  The university’s name should be bolded.  For Virginia Tech, use either of the following:

      • Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA

      • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech), Blacksburg, VA

    • Put your expected graduation date on the right on the top line of this section.  Example: “Graduation expected in May 2025”.

    • List your majors and minors below the university’s name.  Beware that Pamplin finance students receive a B.S. degree in Business, with a ______ Major. If you are double majoring, say “Double Major in Finance and ______”.  If you are receiving a dual degree, say “Dual Degree in Finance and _______”.  Also list any options or certifications that you are pursuing within your major.

      • Here are some examples: 

        • B.S. In Business; Finance Major (Corporate Finance Option)

        • B.S. in Business; Major in Fintech and Big Data Analytics

        • B.S. in Business; Double Major in Finance (Corporate Finance Option) and Marketing

    • Next list your overall GPA, rounded to two decimal places with 4.00 as the denominator (or you can use only one decimal place with “4.0” as the denominator, but this usually implies that you have rounded up from a lower number).  Example:  GPA: 3.37/4.00

      • If it helps your case, you can also list your in-major GPA or your GPA for the most recent few semesters. Use the same number of decimal places.  Here are some examples:

        • Overall GPA: 3.37/4.00, In-Major GPA: 3.49/4.00

        • Overall GPA: 3.37/4.00, Most Recent Three Semesters’ GPA: 3.53/4.00

        • Make sure that you GPA matches your transcript (or the number in DARS) – employers check this data.

    • Other things to list in this section:         

      • Dean’s list – but only list if you made it in nearly every semester.  Examples:

      • Dean’s list every semester

      • Dean’s List for three out of last four semesters

      • If you (not your parents) are paying for the majority of your education costs.  Example:

        • Financing 80% of education with employment earnings, loans and scholarships

      • If you are in the Honors program or the Corps of Cadets

      • Study Abroad programs – list the foreign university (if appropriate), location, and major aspects of the program (type of coursework and credit hours, company visits, etc.).  Here are some examples:

        • Study abroad at Czech National University, Prague, Czech Republic                                Summer 2023

        • Completed 4 business courses and a Czech language course, visited 8 companies

        • Study Abroad in Peru                                                                                                              January 2023

        • Studied Spanish, visited historic sites, and met with 5 companies

      • SEED, BASIS, COINS, CREDIT, and PRISM – Put your SEED/BASIS/COINS/CREDIT/PRISM information toward the bottom of the Education section (not in the Experience section).  Use only standardized, approved language for this section (you can get it from the group)

      • Study abroad goes after SEED/BASIS/COINS/PRISM as part of Education, not Work Experience

      • If you attended community college or another university before Virginia Tech, then you should have a separate section for that school as part of the Education section. Include school name, location, dates attended and GPA at a minimum.  Use the same type of format you used for the Virginia Tech section.  Include a line that says something like “transferred to Virginia Tech after _____ semesters (or years)”

      • Here are a pair of examples:

  • New River Community College, Dublin, VA                                                                   2021-2023

A.S. in Business Administration


  • Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA                                                       2022-2023

Transferred to Virginia Tech after two semesters


  • Work Experience:

    • Most people should use one of the two the following formats:

Employer                                                                                                                                Location

Job Title                                                                                                                                      Dates

  • Bullet points explaining duties and achievements

Employer                                                                                                                                Location

Job Title                                                                                                                                      Dates

  • Bullet points explaining duties and achievements


    • Do not exaggerate what you did!

    • Every bullet point should begin with a verb.

    • List your most significant responsibilities and accomplishments.

      • Try to list accomplishments in economic or leadership terms (costs saved, revenues generated, number of people supervised, etc.).

    • Write the bullet points so that someone who is not an expert in the field can understand them.

      • Don’t use abbreviations, slang or acronyms.

    • You can list jobs from high school, no matter how menial.

      • Employers love a “rags to riches” story.

      • Employers like to see that you are not afraid of hard work.

      • If it is a simple job, then a single bullet point can suffice

    • However, your bullet point can emphasize key skills gained, such as customer service or the ability to work under tight deadlines.

      • The job with the most bullet points should be the one that you are trying to highlight to employers.

    • Military experience should also come under this section.

    • For the periods of employment, you can list them as “Summer 2019” or May 2019 – August 2019”.  You do not need the specific day dates.

    • You can list unpaid internships as well as paid internships and jobs.

    • If you have not had significant work or internship experience, but have worked on significant projects in school or as part of student groups, you can add an additional resume section titled “Projects” in addition to the “Work Experience” section of your resume.

    • Here is an example that illustrates a number of the previous points:

Roanoke National Bank, Roanoke, VA                                                                            Summer 2023

Credit Analysis Intern

  • Analyzed 25 loan applications totaling over $525 million for middle market companies

  • Built projection models and upside/downside scenarios for each company

  • Assisted senior credit officers with due diligence and documentation reviews

Josephine’s Coffee House, Secaucus, NJ

Barista and Cashier

  • Took orders for and prepared coffee drinks and food for over 100 customers per day

  • Manned the cash register, including closing the register at the end of the shift and helping to total up the daily receipts​​​


  • Activities

    • List all activities at Virginia Tech in which you spent a significant number of hours participating
    • Only add bullet points if you had a leadership role or accomplished something meaningful in an individual activity

    • Don’t use acronyms or abbreviations – people from outside Virginia Tech may have no idea what the abbreviation means

    • Describe what the activity or honor is if it is not obvious to someone who has never been to Virginia Tech

      • List all leadership positions

      • List intramural sports, except ones that could sound less serious, like dodgeball or Frisbee

      • It is OK to list religious organizations in which you have been active and had a leadership role

      • Here are some examples:

Marching Virginians

Trumpet Section Leader

  • Led a section of 32 trumpet players

  • Responsible for training new members and overseeing section rehearsal

Beta Iota Gamma Fraternity

Rush Chairman

  • Responsible for recruiting and training new members

  • Organized events attended by over 250 prospective members


Intramural Basketball and Softball

  • Member of team that won the university’s intramural softball championship


  • Honors

    • List all honors which you have received while at Virginia Tech

      • Spell out honor society names and what they are for (business, leadership, etc.)

      • Only use bullet points if you had an active leadership role in an honor society

      • Here is an example:

            Beta Gamma Sigma (business honor society)


  • Collected dues, paid bills, and maintained the organization’s budget


  • Skills and Other:

    • This is your chance to list other significant items that help tell your story, such as:

      • Citizenship or Green Card status

    • This is important if you have a foreign-sounding name

      • Language skills beyond English – be careful not to overstate your fluency

      • Software and programming/coding skills – list specific languages you can code in

      • Security clearances

    • Significant High School Achievements (sports team captain, All-state honors, valedictorian, student government officer, etc.)

      • Eagle Scout status (if applicable)


  • Interests and hobbies

    • Be careful – only list things that will help you in an interview and that you can back up

    • You goal is to give the interviewer something to talk to you about other than finance

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