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Written by Susan ShorSusan Shor

High School Student resume example & writing guide

Looking for a job as a high school student? It can be overwhelming at first, but it’s definitely doable! Your best tool in the job hunt is an amazing resume that grabs attention and conveys your best qualities to managers. Check out our High School Student resume example & guide for specific advice!
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High School Student resume example & writing guide
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Congratulations! You've decided to take your first steps toward getting a job. Chances are this is your first high school student resume. You may not realize it, but you already have some accomplishments and achievements that will make your high school student resume shine. 

This high school student resume example and writing guide will show you how to capitalize on your experience, skills and knowledge even if you've never held a "real" job!

Resume guide for a high school student resume

Landing your first job can feel daunting, but Resume.io is here to help. Even if you're just starting out, our collection of 350+ resume examples and writing guides (like the one you are reading), along with professional resume templates, a resume builder tool and expert advice, can help you craft the perfect resume with ease.

This writing guide, along with the corresponding high school resume examples, will show you how to capitalize on your experience, skills, and knowledge even if you've never held a "real" job! These are the topics we'll cover.

  • How to write a high school student resume
  • Choosing the right resume format for a high school student
  • How to add your contact information
  • Using summaries
  • Listing education and relevant experience
  • Picking the right resume design/layout
  • What the entry-level market looks like, and what salary you can expect
High School Student Resume Example - In this high school  student guide
High School Student Resume Example - In this high school  student guide

Let’s get started! 

How to write a high school student resume

Lack of work experience need not stop you from creating an impressive high school student resume! Generally, it should be structured to include the following key sections: 

We’ll be taking a closer look at each of these resume components after covering some general considerations.

Expert tip

Optimize your high school student resume!

Employers receive hundreds of high school resumes for each open position. They don’t have time to look through them all, so they use ATS software to do the initial sorting. That's why most employers now use applicant tracking systems (ATS). 

This means you have to know how these algorithm-based systems work and how to get your high school resume past the digital filter. Employers program the software to screen for certain skills and attributes reflected in keywords and phrases. 

The ATS scans resumes on that basis, and then scores and ranks them. Your resume will only make the cut if it is in the top-ranking range. 

Choosing the right resume format for a high school student

Unless you already have some work experience, the most commonly used chronological format may not be suitable for structuring your high school student resume. 

It’s the most straightforward way for job candidates to organize their experience and qualifications below employer headings and dates, in order from most recent to earliest.

But for high school students or recent graduates with little or nothing to list in a traditional employment history section, other resume formats can be ideal. The format you choose should depend on the type of job and industry, and how best to present yourself as an ideal match. 

In cases where specialized knowledge and skills, and possibly extracurricular activities, are relevant to prospective employers, a functional resume may be your best bet. It offers greater flexibility to emphasize your most relevant strengths up front in a section labelled “Experience.” 

A hybrid, or combination, resume format offers even more versatility. You can integrate chronological and functional elements in the most applicable manner, and perhaps even put your education section higher up on the page to emphasize your school interests and accomplishments. 

Expert tip

Let us do the hard work for you! 

Check out the many resume templates in our resume builder and choose the format that best suits your situation. We have a wide variety available as resume examples.

Include your contact information

A distinctive resume header sets you apart from other candidates by ensuring your resume gets noticed for the right reasons. An eye-pleasing design will make it inviting to read, while also readily identifying who your resume belongs to and how you can be reached for an interview. Here's what yours needs to include: 

  • Full name & title. Simply include your first and last name, along with the role for which you are applying. Tailor this each time.
  • Professional email address. Employers won't think highly of an address like [email protected]. Your best bet is the golden standard format of first name (or initials) + last name: [email protected] or [email protected].
  • Phone number. Include a number where you can be reached. You can also include when you are available at the given number.
  • Location. You don't need to include your full address. However, you should highlight your location — i.e. your state and city.
  • LinkedIn. Ensure that your LinkedIn profile is active and highlights your expertise. If that is the case, you can include it on your high school student resume.

Don’t include:

Do

Mary Smith 

Barista 

[email protected]

0811 992 1182

New York, New York

Don't

Mary Smith

High School Student 

[email protected]

0811 992 1182

Apartment 22, Victoria Building, New York

In a relationship.

Make use of a summary

Describing yourself can be tough, but don't hold back. You have many of the qualities employers want. Here's where your personality can shine. 

The 2-3 sentence resume summary (also known as the profile or personal statement) is the first section, directly under your contact information. It allows you to exhibit a bit of personality while you explain the qualities that will make you a great employee. 

Here are some sample questions to ask yourself when writing your summary:

  • What makes me a good student, friend, teammate, family member?
  • Which of my skills or personal qualities have helped me in school? Am I organized, creative, responsible?
  • What activities, projects, and interests could I describe that translate into job skills?

You can find an adaptable high school student resume examples summary below:

No experience adaptable resume summary example

Resourceful and dedicated high school student with excellent analytical skills and a demonstrated commitment to learning. Strong organizational abilities with proven success managing multiple academic projects . Well-rounded and professional team player dedicated to continuing academic pursuits at a collegiate level.

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Some experience adaptable resume summary example

Driven and proactive high school student with top-notch time management and organizational skills. Previous experience working with CareKittens charity as a volunteer over two summers. Committed to supporting important causes, furthering education, and learning while on the job.

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Outline your work experience or extracurriculars

Before you give up on the work history section, don't forget that your high school experience includes a wealth of opportunities to draw from. 

Give yourself credit for jobs you've done for classes or community service points as a high school student. All positions of responsibility count! Maybe you have had a paying job. If so, that's great! Here are some examples to consider: 

  • Voluntary experience. Whether you have volunteered at a charity or helped out at an event, now is the time to shout about it. Focus on your transferable skills here.
  • Part-time jobs. Did you have a part-time job during high school? If so, you should include it as part of your work experience. You may have worked in a store, in a restaurant, or even babysat for the neighbors.
  • Teams and clubs. If you don't have any work experience but are part of a sports team or club, you should add this here. Being a team-player is considered to be a high-level skill, and so it's an easy way to wow the hiring manager.

Jobs or work experiences to consider listing

Any volunteer work or projects for social or community groups are a great addition to your high school student resume, whether in the past or continuing now. 

List each item in your experience section as any other job applicant would in the conventional employment history format —  in reverse chronological order. That means you start with the current or most recent listing and work backward to the earliest, by date.

Expert tip

Look for job referrals!

Ask friends who already have a job where you're interested in working for a referral. Some companies have referral programs that reward current employees when their referral is hired. Employers like referrals, because they eliminate some of the unknowns of hiring. Few people would recommend a person they did not think could do the job.

Here is an example of an experience listing suitable for a high school student resume.

Adaptable resume employment history example

Sales Associate at B&B Booksllers, New York 
September 2022 - Present 

  • Feed animals and made sure they had access to fresh water at all times.
  • Answer customer questions and reported issues in person or by phone.
  • Help customers select products that best fit the needs of their pet.
  • Keep the selling floor clean and maintained neat and orderly product displays.
  • Maintain accurate work logs.
  • Recognize for my reliability and zero absence work record.
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How to write a high school student resume with no experience

Let's say you have no direct work experience on your resume. One way to approach this conundrum is to focus on either voluntary experience or your extracurriculars. 

As a high school student, you may be putting a lot of time and effort into extracurricular activities that demonstrate your commitment to showing up and participating. These may be especially relevant if they illustrate an interest related to the job you are applying for. 

Creating a master list of your extracurricular activities is a worthwhile exercise in its own right. It can reinforce your choices of which skills and personal attributes to highlight in other resume sections. It may also clarify the type of job you want, and lead you to consider targeting your job search to a field that fits your extracurricular interests. 

Any master list — be it for skills, activities or jobs — can be useful for your own reference and convenience. It’s a visual tool that highlights what you are looking for at a glance, then makes it easy to cherry-pick the most appropriate resume samples for your current resume version.

If you are a go-getter who participates in multiple activities outside of school and work, perhaps associated with accomplishments, consider adding a separate resume section for extracurricular activities. 

These show your talents, determination, and time-management skills. This is another way to inject a little personality into your resume. 

Adaptable education example

Science Honor Society, Callaway High School, Jackson 
2019 - Present 

National Honors Society, Callaway High School, Jackson 
2019 - Present 
Participated in several volunteer activities, including:

  • Built a house for Habitat for Humanity
  • Collected supplies Stewpot Community Services
  • Organized food drive & fundraiser for Cascades Humane Society 
     

Volunteer, Cascades Humane Society Jackson 
Aug 2019 - Aug 2020 

  • Performed various administrative and clerical tasks as needed.
  • Served as a support for the entire office staff.
  • Monitored & observed animals for signs of illness & reported symptoms to superiors.
  • Created online pet profiles for potential adopters.
  • Collected and recorded adoption fees.
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High School Student Resume Example - Do and Don't
High School Student Resume Example - Do and Don't

Include the relevant key skills that make you a great employee

Employers willing to hire inexperienced workers are looking for signs of responsibility, initiative, and desire to learn. 

What you do need are soft skills, also known as interpersonal, social or people skills. Examples include communication — including listening, courtesy and ability to take direction — as well as dependability, punctuality and being well-organized. 

Of course, hard skills have a place on your resume too. these are pragmatic skills necessary or valuable for certain jobs, tools or programs or sciences. Examples for a high school student might include computer programming or child care expertise. 

With ATS likely to be scanning your high school student resume (unless you are applying to work for an individual or at a very small company, you need to know what keywords will help get your resume in the hands of hiring managers. 

Respondents to a Society for Human Resource Management survey ranked these as the most important skills for entry-level employees:

  • Dependability and reliability (think being at work on time or fulfilling promises) — a whopping 97% said these were a must!
  • Integrity — 87%.
  • Respect (towards clients and co-workers) — 84%.
  • Teamwork — 83%.

You probably have all of these skills to one degree or another. So, make sure you list them on your high school student resume. 

High School Student Resume Example - Important skills entry-level employees
High School Student Resume Example - Important skills entry-level employees

Check out a high school student resume skills sample below.

Adaptable resume skills section example
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Detail your education & relevant certifications

Think of it this way: your career right now is your experience as a high school student. It's probably more important than your employment history if you have any work experience at all, so treat the education section of your high school student resume as a higher priority. 

Expand on your high school "career" achievements and focuses, starting with a list of classes that are relevant to the job you seek. Looking to work with children? Highlight your early childhood education class. Here are some examples of relevant certificates: 

  • Adobe Certified Associate (ACA): If you undertook this certificate while in high school, you don't want to leave it out. It shows that you have digital media skills, which is a real asset if you are applying for jobs within the creative fields.
  • Certified Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS): Most hiring managers will expect you to be confident using Microsoft Office. However, if you happen to have this certificate, you can show that you are a cut above the rest.
  • Google IT Support Professional Certificate: Interested in a career in IT? You might find that having this Google-certified qualification gives you the gravitas you need.
  • Food Safety Certification: Hospitality roles are highly popular among high school students and graduates. If you want to show that you are serious about this role, you should let the hiring manager know that you have a Food Safety Certificate.
  • Language proficiency: Speaking a second language is always going to be a valuable skill. Let the hiring manager know if you can and provide details of your certificates.

Also, mention any accolades and honors, or even your grade point average (SAT/ACT/GPA Scores) if they shine. Should your scores be high, you can elevate your resume above the competition. You can also use the education section to describe projects you are proud of and how they reflect your skills.

Expert tip

Choose a structure that works for you!

Your resume sections do not have to be in the same order as they are listed in this high school student resume sample. Put the section you think is most important and impressive first and go from there. Just remember, the summary must remain at the top. 

Adaptable education example

High Honors, Callaway High School Jackson 
Aug 2019 - Present 

  • 3.92 GPA
  • Academic High Honor Roll 2015 - 2017
  • Presidential Award for Academic Excellence 2016
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Pick the right resume layout and design for a high school student resume

Are you itching to show off your artistic bent here? You may be tempted to try standing out from the crowd with a strikingly colorful high school student CV design. 

But unless you are applying for a graphic design job or other position in a creative field, it's in your best interest to keep the look of your resume simple, streamlined, and polished. Strive for a first impression that's as legible and inviting to read as it is eye-catching.

Simple doesn't rule out creative choices when it comes to the layout, design, and formatting of your high school student CV.

Why use a template?

Unless you've already developed a great eye for graphic design and the computer skills to match, a resume template may be your best bet to create an eye-pleasing resume without much difficulty.

Resume.io offers four categories of resume templates, any of them suitable for a high school student to personalize for a professional and beautiful result. Start by choosing one of these style categories before drilling down to select the right layout: simple, professional, modern or creative. 

One benefit of using a resume template is that you can avoid formatting errors that make your resume look sloppy or incomplete. Using the Resume.io builder tool makes every step of creating your resume a breeze. 

Expert tip

Don't lose your hard work! 

If you are cutting and pasting your resume into a computer program, first save it as a text file to eliminate odd formatting marks.

Personalization

As emphasized already, the rule of thumb for resume layout, design and formatting is: keep it clean and organized! Working with one of our templates and the builder tool takes away any guesswork. Yet, you still have room to make your high school student resume stylishly unique. 

Contrary to popular wisdom, Times New Roman is not the only professional-looking font that will serve you well. Try Garamond, Georgia, Helvetica, Cambria, or Calibri. 

If your resume template of choice uses a color, feel free to change it. But resist any urge to add more color. One small splash is all you need. And don't use a color other than black for your text. The rule of thumb for layouts is: keep it clean and organized!

Job market and outlook

Many high school students ask themselves, "How will I get a job without experience?" Guess what: Everybody who is now working started out in a first job without having any employment history. You have to start somewhere. A little time and research can be all it takes to find a job that adds to your skills list while putting some money in your pocket!

Prospective college student

Use This Resume

You have already made the decision to look for work. Now, with Resume.io's collection of tools at your fingertips, we'll walk you through everything you need in the first steps to success. It all starts with getting your foot in the door. 

Statistical insight

More than half of young people have jobs! 

Thinking of getting a first job? You're not alone. As of July 2023, 55% of people aged between 16 and 24 had jobs. Often enough, these roles are part-time and fit around the young person's studies. Look for a flexible option that suits your schedule.

Great first jobs

Being in demand means you have choices. Your first job probably won't be the job of your dreams, but you can target work that will lead you in the right direction for your future. This can apply in almost any type of work that high school students are typically hired to do.

About one-quarter of working teens have jobs in food preparation or service, according to BLS data. And there is plenty of room to be selective and forward-looking in this industry. Even if you end up at a fast food restaurant, you can choose which one it is. 

With a little research, you can pick a company that offers management training, flexible hours or other benefits that appeal to you. More than 10% of working high school students have jobs in these fields:

This does not mean you are restricted to these industries, but they are examples of areas you're likely to be qualified for. 

High school student resume, text only

High school student resume, text only

Profile

Resourceful and dedicated High School student with excellent analytical skills and a demonstrated commitment to providing great customer service. Strong organizational abilities with proven successes managing multiple academic projects and volunteering events. Well-rounded and professional team player dedicated to continuing academic pursuits at a collegiate level.


Employment history

Sales Associate at B&B Booksllers, New York 
September 2022 - Present 

  • Feed animals and made sure they had access to fresh water at all times.
  • Answer customer questions and reported issues in person or by phone.
  • Help customers select products that best fit the needs of their pet.
  • Keep the selling floor clean and maintained neat and orderly product displays.
  • Maintain accurate work logs.
  • Recognize for my reliability and zero absence work record.


Skills


Education

High Honors, Callaway High School Jackson 
Aug 2019 - Present 

  • 3.92 GPA
  • Academic High Honor Roll 2015 - 2017
  • Presidential Award for Academic Excellence 2016
Copied!

Key takeaways for a high school student resume

An effective high school student resume can make finding your first job much easier. So, what are you waiting for? Employers understand your lack of experience and instead are interested in the soft skills you are likely to have.Highlight these soft skills, along with any hard (practical) skills you have, in the summary section of your high school student resume.

It doesn't end there. You should also use keywords that automated screening software will likely scan and score for. Remember, education has been your “career” up until now, so leverage your school experience when writing this section of your resume.

Use our resume builder to browse simple resume samples, then personalize the template that speaks to you. Make sure your resume writing is error-free and looks amazing.

 

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