For the past several semesters, I have contemplated adding a résumé assignment to my first-year writing course. Though I’ve occasionally required students to write résumés, it’s not an assignment that I’ve used in recent years, and I’ve never required my students to post their résumés to the blogs that they maintain for the course. But at the end of the fall semester, as I began my planning for the spring, I returned to the idea. Requiring students to create a résumé would give them the incentive to produce a document that they might not be motivated to begin on their own–at least not now, in their freshmen year. So I contacted Katie Wohlman, Director of Lenoir-Rhyne’s Alex Lee Career and Professional Development Center, to ask if she and/or members of her staff would be willing to conduct résumé workshops in my English 131 classes. Katie responded enthusiastically to my request, and last Monday she and Rita Purvis, LR’s Career and Community Relations Coordinator, conducted workshops (Rita in the 8 a.m. class and Katie in the 11 a.m. class) to offer the students guidelines for compiling their first résumés.
Though some would argue that such a workshop would prove more beneficial to students later in their college careers, beginning the résumé-writing process sooner gives students the advantage of having a résumé in progress. rather than finding themselves facing a blank page if they encounter–as some of them undoubtedly will–a job or internship opportunity with an application deadline that’s only a few days, or perhaps even only a few hours, away.
As a follow-up to the workshop, my students will post their résumés to their blogs for Monday’s class. Many thanks to Katie Wohlman and Rita Purvis and to students Faith Faller and Leah Dagenhardt for creating cards to express our thanks to Katie and Rita.