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It’s a Balancing Act – 4 Tips to Develop Your Resume While Working.

gettingajobWith college prices rising, high school students are feeling the pressure to find a balance between working a part-time job to save money and building a resume to help them attain scholarship dollars. As great as that sounds, it is really possible to do both?

Yes, it is possible! Here are a few strategies current high school students are using to maximize their options.


  1. Clear one day a week from work for school activities or volunteer work.

    Most employers are willing to work around your schedule if they understand why it’s important to you. When you are in the job interview, let the manager know that you need every Tuesday (or whatever day) off for a certain activity or volunteer work. Let him or her know that you are happy to work any other day of the week, but volunteer work (or extra curricular activity) is important to you and you need it for college and scholarship applications.

  2. Use free time at school to tutor students in your school or read to younger students in your school district.

    Many high schools have a peer-tutoring program. Find out who is in charge of it at your school and offer your services in the subjects in which you excel. If there isn’t a tutoring program, let teachers or guidance counselors know that you’re available on a volunteer basis to tutor. If you’re more interested in helping younger children, perhaps you could make arrangements to volunteer at your local elementary school. Younger students love to be read to and get homework help from the “big kids”.

  3. Maximize your summer vacation.

    Many students pick up additional hours at their jobs over the summer and some even pick up a second job. However, the summer is a great time to build your scholarship resume through volunteer work and job shadowing. Set aside so many hours a week to devote to volunteering. Even just one or two hours will make a difference and will show commitment to college admissions officers and scholarship committees.

  4. If you must work long hours, look for jobs in your chosen career field.

    If you’re interested in being a pharmacist, become a pharmacy technician. If you’re interested in teaching, look for work at an after school program or in a tutoring center. Make sure to mention in your scholarship application that due to financial need, a part-time job was necessary, but you gained valuable experience in your field while working.

Although it may take some careful planning and some discipline, finding the time to  balance your school work, part-time job and outside activities can pay off in the long run.

Written by

Kelly Short is a 20-year advocate of public education and has been happily teaching journalism and photography to high school student journalists. She, also, advised numerous award winning student publications during her career.


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One Response

  1. Lauren says:

    Wonderful tips for students who are looking to develop their resume! Looking for jobs in your career field can definitely help with experience and tutoring students at your school can be very helpful as well. Thanks for sharing!

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