One of the most underrated sections of the resume is the Activities section. This section is simply for stating activities you were involved in, or clubs and organizations you were part of. Many people believe this section is not necessary on the resume because it might not include any activities that are “relevant” to the person’s objective. In this post I will explain to you how an activities section can spice up your resume, what it means to employers, and different ways to format it.
As I said before, many people believe that the activities section is unnecessary. This is understandable. What does being on an intramural hockey team have to do with being a computer science major? But this does not mean you should leave out all of your the extracurricular activities and organizations. If you are struggling to fill up your resume, an activities section would be perfect for you. You can include everything from a fraternity you were involved in, to being in the coloring club – you can include them all!
Even employers like seeing an activities section. Multiple employers have told us they are more likely to hire someone who was active in organizations and involved with the school or surrounding community. Having activities and student organizations on your resume shows that outside of class you were staying active. This is especially true for students in athletics. Athletes have to donate so much of their time to their sport, even in the off season. After going to class all day athletes are required to go to practice, weight train, go to team meetings, and more. Being a student athlete takes up so much time and effort, so students who are involved in athletics should try to showcase this as much as possible. This shows where the student spent their time when they were not in class.
There are multiple ways to write your activities section, it just depends on the activities you have and how detailed you want to be in your explanation. If you are involved in many different organizations and groups, the easiest thing to do would be to simply list them. First, write the name of your position (even if it’s “member”) in bold. Then write the name of the organization you were involved in, followed by the month and year of when you started and the month and year of when you were finished (if you are still currently involved with the group, write “present”). Remember to put the activities in reverse chronological order, the newest organizations will be at the top.
If you have fewer activities you may want to go more into depth about these experiences. You would start off by listing it the same way as we did before (position, organization name, dates), and you would use bullet points to explain the activity and what you did in the organization. This is useful for activities where you are a position holder or executive member. Using this method you can describe all of the skills you used while in this organization.
The Activities section can be a very useful and informative section. it shows employers what you did in your free time and how involved you were in your school and the community. So try and be as active as you can in your school and join as many clubs and organizations as you can. UMD has hundreds, and there are clubs for almost everything. It is a great resume builder and a great place to meet people and grow your network.
Once you graduate, the activities section on your resume will most likely morph to “Professional Organizations” and/or “Community Involvement.” The idea of getting involved in different activities extends throughout your career development. As a new professional, you’ll benefit from getting involved in professional organizations locally and at the state and national levels.
Of Possible Interest:
- Why Should I Get Involved On-Campus?
- Greek Life at UMD
- Getting Involved in a Student Organization
- The Importance of Doing More: Before, During, & After College