For some teenagers, life is all about having fun and enjoying it, while others are already polishing their professional skills and googling how to write a resume for teenagers. In both cases, the teenage years are a time of self-discovery and unforgettable summer jobs.
So, regardless of whether you are a teenager looking for a summer job, internship, or scholarship for further education, the fact is you’re gonna need to write your teen resume.
If you want to learn how to transform your part-time gigs, summer escapades, extracurricular activities, and hobbies into spectacular work experiences on your resume, you’re in the right place. This article will equip you with all you need to know to craft a standout resume for teenagers!
As far as recruiters and ATS systems are concerned, the chronological resume format is the most effective.
The most important sections of your resume for teenagers are skills, work experience, and education. Focus on demonstrating your maturity and competence by highlighting the skills most relevant to the job.
Pay attention to the format and layout of the resume. Sloppiness in this regard may portray you as irresponsible.
Harness the power of additional sections, especially your personal projects, hobbies, and interests. These can help you impress the prospective employers.
How to Format a Teenager Resume
As a teenager, it may be hard to get others to take you seriously, which is just one of the reasons why it is important to format your resume for teenagers properly. Using the correct resume format when communicating your career goals to employers can increase your chances of being hired and ensure that you are taken seriously.
On that note, here are three resume formats that are most commonly used:
Standard Resume Formats
The chronological resume format provides a chronological history of your work engagements, starting from the most recent ones, and lists the rest in descending order. The fact that it is ATS-proof makes it the safest choice.
The functional resume format focuses on your skills and abilities, which is great when you want to compensate for a lack of professional experience. However, this is not an ATS-friendly format, which could be a serious issue.
The combination (hybrid) resume format is very popular among experienced professionals. The main section is focused on skills, and each skill is supported by relevant work experience, all listed in reverse chronological order, like in the chronological format.
Teenager Resume Layout
The layout of your resume isn’t just about aesthetics; it’s a crucial aspect of its functionality. Given that recruiters often skim through resumes in mere seconds, your layout should be visually appealing and, ideally, fit on a single page.
Here’s how to do this:
Opt for bullet points: Concise lists are much easier to skim than lengthy paragraphs. This ensures the key information about you isn’t lost in a sea of text.
Choose a modern font: It is essential that the font is easily readable, so shoot for Times New Roman, Calibri, Ariel, or a similar font, and set the size to 10-12 pt.
Prioritize white space: Smart use of white space enhances readability and gives a clean, uncluttered look, so ensure your resume has at least one-inch margins and ample white space.
By following these guidelines, you’ll create a resume layout that not only looks polished but also maximizes the impact of your content, increasing your chances of making a memorable impression on employers.
Teenager Resume Sections
As a teenager, you likely won't have a lot of experience to put in a resume. But don’t let this mislead you; you still need to include all the standard resume sections. The basic resume sections encompass the following:
Resume objective or summary
Once you’ve incorporated these, you have the creative freedom to customize your resume for teenagers with additional sections, such as:
Accolades and certifications
Interests and hobbies
This should serve as a framework for structuring your resume for teenagers from the ground up. However, there’s no need to start entirely from scratch, as there are many excellent resume tools and templates that can significantly simplify and speed up the process.
So, instead of simply resorting to a generic MS Office Word template found online and adapting it, consider using our resume builder. It comes with pre-designed templates that allow you to input information and tailor the layout to your preferences effortlessly.
How to Add Contact Information to Your Teenager Resume
Your resume for teenagers should start with some basic details about you, including your name, job title or education degree (since it is likely you don’t have a job title yet), and contact information.
Regardless of the fact you might not have an official job title yet, including the desired job title may help you give off the impression of a mature, determined teenager, which is what you’re aiming for.
Here’s an example:
Lana Mooner English Language Tutor +935 987 2367 email@example.com Chicago linkedin.com/lanamooner66
In the example we provided, you can see that the candidate also used their LinkedIn profile and their location. This is not mandatory, so it is on you to estimate whether these details would be helpful or not regarding the job you’re aspiring for.
You should, however, be very careful with sharing your social media profiles, as you want to ensure you give off the impression of a serious young person, so TikTok and Instagram may not be relevant.
How to Write a Resume Objective for Teens
A resume objective is a three-to-four-sentence statement describing your skills, achievements, and career objectives. It is used when the candidate has little to no experience, while experienced professionals use a summary that highlights their key accomplishments.
You can think of a teen resume objective as a brief explanation of why you want this job in particular and what qualifications you bring to the table. For teenagers, crafting a resume objective is crucial, as it sets the tone for the rest of the document.
Teenager Resume Objective With No Experience
Take a look at an example of a well-written objective for a teenager resume:
Motivated senior high school student with a can-do attitude and a thirst for knowledge. In search of an entry-level position where I can learn about the business world, hone my interpersonal and communication abilities, and make a positive impact.
This candidate highlighted their enthusiasm, work ethic, and a clear intent to gain experience and contribute to the prospective employer’s goals. Now, let’s have a look at one not-so-well-written resume objective:
High school student with some work experience.
This resume objective lacks detail as it gives no information on the candidate’s aspirations and abilities. In general, it seems vague and doesn’t inspire trust.
Teenager Resume Objective With Working Experience
If you have some experience relevant to the position you’re applying for, make sure to mention it in your resume objective. Here’s a good example of how to do this:
Attentive and responsible high school senior with a year of part-time customer service experience. Seeking a position as a sales associate at [company name], where I can put my interpersonal skills, knowledge of customer service, and desire to help people to good use.
Now, let’s see how not to write a teenager resume objective with working experience:
High school senior with some work experience in need of a job.
In the first example, the candidate mentions their relevant experience and specific skills. In contrast, the second one provides no details about the applicant, giving the impression that they are not committed to the application process or have clear goals in mind.
Teenager Resume Work Experience
If you are a teen just starting out in the workforce, the "work experience section" on your resume is important despite your possible lack of professional experience.
Whether you are a teenager with no work experience or have a fair amount of it, thanks to internships, volunteer work, or other extracurricular activities, we will show you how to present your work experience in the best possible light.
Before getting into the specifics, here are some broad guidelines for writing a compelling "Work experience" section:
Make use of action verbs. When describing your previous work experiences, make use of action verbs so that your responsibilities and accomplishments can be communicated effectively. A few examples of these are the verbs "served," "assisted," "coordinated," and "managed."
Focus on achievements. Instead of just listing your activities, highlight the results you have achieved. Describe the impact you had and the value you added to a group or organization.
Quantify results. Include data and statistics to back up your claims of success whenever possible. Use phrases like "customer satisfaction increased by 15%" or "volunteered 100 hours" to demonstrate your success.
Be concise. Rather than going into lengthy detail, stick to the essentials. Do not use run-on sentences or a ton of detail.
Teenager Resume With No Working Experience
There are still ways to demonstrate your qualifications and readiness for employment, even if you are a teenager without any work experience. It is important to highlight the transferable skills you have acquired through extracurriculars like school projects, clubs, sports, and volunteer work. Here’s a good example:
Writer for School Newspapers (September 2020 - Present): Actively participated in preparing the content of monthly newspaper issues, researched relevant topics and wrote about them, conducted interviews, and proposed new topics, developing strong research, communication, creative writing, and critical thinking skills.
Volunteer, Local Library (Summer 2021): Created and organized writing workshops for kids, started a book club for teenagers, and assisted in organizing library events. Demonstrated responsibility and a commitment to community service.
Teenager With Some Working Experience
If you have acquired work experience through part-time jobs, internships, or other positions, make the most of it by highlighting your accomplishments and skills. Here’s a good example:
Retail Assistant, [Retail Store Name] (September 2022 - Present): Increased customer satisfaction by 20% by helping them make informed product choices. Successfully increased personal sales by 10% over the team average while keeping all sales data accurate.
Intern at [Advertising Agency Name] (Autumn 2021). Worked closely with a group of marketers to develop content for social media and oversee client accounts. I was recognized for the creative campaign ideas, which helped the company achieve a 15% growth in client engagement.
So, regardless of the amount of work experience you have as a teenager, you can create an impactful work experience section by following the above-mentioned guidelines.
Education Section of Teen Resume
Teenagers often do not have work experience, so the education section is very important, especially if you are still in high school or just graduated. This section gives important information about your academic background and can show how committed you are to learning and growing as a person.
You should make sure to include the following in the education section:
High School. State the name of your high school.
Years attended. State the years you attended or your expected graduation date.
GPA. Make sure to mention your GPA if it is impressive and speaks well to your academic prowess. If your GPA is below average, you may choose to leave it out.
Relevant courses. Include any training or education that relates to the position you are applying for or that demonstrates relevant skills. If you are applying for a position in the scientific field, for instance, it is a good idea to highlight any advanced coursework in the subject area.
Projects. Include any relevant coursework, extracurricular activities, and projects that you worked on while in school. Focus on the overall goals of the project, your specific contributions, and the final results.
Extracurricular activities. Highlight your involvement in relevant clubs, organizations, and extracurriculars, as well as those that showcase your leadership, teamwork, and other transferable skills, in your resume.
Here's an example of how to format a teen resume's "Education" section:
Education Chilton High School Graduation Year: June 2023 GPA: 3.9/4.0 Relevant Courses: Advanced Placement Creative Writing, Web Design, and Content Creation Noteworthy projects:
Led a team of writers for school newspapers, engaged in preparing and editing the newspaper's content and the school’s website content.
Created and implemented an environmental awareness campaign, resulting in a 10% campus waste reduction.
Content writer and editor, School Website and Newspapers (2022-2023): wrote and edited content for school website and newspapers.
Member, Student Government Association (2022-2023): Participated in school improvement projects.
Your involvement in extracurricular activities is just as relevant to potential employers as your academic achievements, so be sure to highlight both in the "Education" section of your resume. It gives a full picture of your strengths, weaknesses, and dedication to learning and development.
What Skills Can Teens Add to Their Resume?
Skills are crucial in teen resumes because they give the potential employer a picture of what the candidate could grow into. Therefore, include both the hard and soft skills that showcase your capabilities. Here’s a list of skills teenagers can have, along with tips on how to incorporate them into a resume:
Hard Skills for Teenagers
Hard skills refer to skills that are highly specific and teachable. Focus on highlighting those that are the most relevant to the position you’re applying for:
Social media analytics
Teenager Soft Skills
Soft skills refer to the personal qualities and attributes that you have and that you might not have acquired through any kind of formal learning. These are:
Other Sections of Teenager Resume
Mandatory sections are the core of your resume, but optional sections can be just as important. They can be your chance to stand out from other candidates. These sections should be placed at the end of your resume to ensure they don’t overshadow its most important sections, like work experiences and skills.
Volunteer activities not only show that you are dedicated to being an active member of the community but also provide an opportunity to highlight skills and experiences that are pertinent to the position for which you are applying. It shows that you care about making a difference in the world beyond the scope of your job.
Employers can learn a lot about your interests and passions from the personal projects you have worked on. They reveal how self-motivated you are, which is perhaps even more important.
Showing that you are committed to learning and keeping up to date in your chosen field by attending conferences and lectures is an excellent way to demonstrate that you are willing to grow personally and professionally. Plus, it portrays you as a future expert in the field.
Your involvement in a particular field and your desire to network with others who share your interests can both be highlighted by your membership in academic or professional associations.
Many employers require the knowledge of foreign languages or consider it a huge plus. Therefore, mentioning that you are fluent in more than one language can be beneficial, particularly when applying for jobs that require bilingual or multilingual abilities.
Hobbies & Interests
Sharing your hobbies and interests can be an unexpectedly effective method for capturing the interest of recruiters and prospective employers. This section allows you to portray yourself as more than just a piece of paper—it paints you as a motivated, passionate, and intriguing individual.
Should Teens Attach Cover Letters With Their Resumes?
Demonstrating genuine enthusiasm for the role and depicting yourself as a dedicated candidate can be effortlessly achieved by including a cover letter with your resume for teenagers. You can use concise paragraphs in your cover letter to showcase your skills and achievements, forge a personal connection with recruiters, and invite them to initiate further conversations with you.
It is also a good idea to create a cover letter that matches your resume in regards to style, format, and outline.
Tips for Creating a Teenager Resume
Here are some final tips that will help you craft an exceptional resume for teenagers:
Tips for Writing a Teenager Resume
Highlight skills through experience. It is important to highlight the transferable skills you have developed through your coursework, extracurriculars, and any volunteer or paid work you have done. Describe how you will be able to use these abilities in your target position.
Show that you’re organized. Make sure your resume is free of spelling errors, formatting mishaps, and similar mistakes.
Tailor your resume to the job description. Make sure your resume is tailored to each job you apply for by highlighting your relevant experience and skills that are in line with the needs listed. This shows that you are qualified for the position and will get the attention of hiring managers.
Teenager Resume Example
The journey of crafting your teenager resume might not seem as intimidating now, right?
Remember to focus on your skills, and don’t hesitate to infuse some of your unique personality into your resume. Being a teenager is never just about the facts but also about your individuality and what makes you stand out. So, let your resume shine brightly, and may your path be paved with exciting opportunities!