Create a Dynamic Resume for College

Summer is almost here, but that should not mean that it is time for a high school student to rest. Rather, it should mean the student should work on activities that have been low on their priority list during the busy school year. One of these items should be to create or edit their high school resume. Here are some suggestions on what a student should have on their resume.


If your student has not already done so, they should get involved. Every school has a plethora of sports, clubs and activities. If students are unsure about a club’s activities, they should seek out the sponsor or attend a meeting. Remember, students are not obligated to attend the next meeting. Colleges seek students who actively participate in a variety of activities. Joining a school activity can help students expand their circle of friends, establish a college resume and perhaps even find their passion.

Leadership Positions

Colleges do not want to see a plethora of activities on a student’s resume, but rather a few in which they are deeply and passionately involved. Perhaps a student can show off their leadership qualities by becoming the captain of their athletic team. This does not mean they have to be the best player on the team, but the hardest working player or the motivator. Perhaps they can work hard in an attempt to become first chair in their section in band, or take on roles of their club/student council with their eyes on the club presidency. Colleges want dynamic students on their campus who can succeed when being challenged.

Rigorous Coursework

Over the years I have had conversations with numerous college admissions representatives (or the same people that read your student’s college application). One of most important factors colleges use to evaluate an applicant’s admissions are their high school transcripts. Each representative examines the high school transcripts to assess how much a student has challenged themselves. They especially look for Honors or Advanced Placement level coursework. Admissions representatives understand that these elite courses are not for every student, nor do they want to see poor marks on the transcripts. The suggestion was given for a high school student to enroll in the hardest courses that will challenge themselves, while experiencing success.


“If my high school student does not get involved at school, they will NEVER get into college!” It is true colleges want students involved, but perhaps school activities are not of interest to the student. Yet, students still need to be involved in something other than the ‘Couch Potato Club.’ Perhaps they can seek employment in a field of potential college major/career interest. This will provide invaluable experience in the field, while being exposed to everyday tasks. If a job is not available at a particular company, perhaps there are summer internship opportunities or even a job shadow program. This will also help a student to build communication skills and high school resume, while exposing them to the concept of networking with potential employers.

Do you have other ideas on what a high school student can do to create a dynamic college resume? Leave a comment and let us know. Need help with your high school student in the college selection or application process, Contact Us.

Thomas Jaworski is the lead consultant of Quest College Consulting. He is an Independent College Counselor with over ten years experience in the college admission process as an Certified Illinois Teacher (Type 09) and Counselor (Type 73) while also a member of IECA and NACAC. For more information, you can visit his website at or email him at Follow him on Twitter @Tom_QuestCC or on Facebook at

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