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Resumes & Cover Letters

So how do you get yourself noticed by employers? It all starts with a persuasive cover letter and a targeted resume that promotes your relevant skills and qualifications. Let the University Career Center & The President’s Promise help you create a resume and cover letter that will effectively communicate you are the best applicant for the position!

What is a Resume or Curriculum Vitae (CV)?

  • Intends to be a brief & targeted highlight of professional accomplishments 
  • Emphasizes transferable skills and related experiences 
  • Used primarily for positions in federal, industry, non-profit, and public sector 
  • Traditionally, 1 page for entry-level & early career professionals - limit to 2 pages
  • Intends to be a full comprehensive record of your education & career history 
  • Emphasizes academic and research-related accomplishments, such as publications, presentations, fellowships, and grants 
  • Used primarily for positions in academic, medical, and scientific jobs
  • Multiple pages in length (dependent on experiences) 
  • ​​For the majority of applications within the U.S., you will be asked to submit a resume. Outside of the U.S., the terms ‘resume’ and ‘CV’ are sometimes used interchangeably.
  • Present differently from industry resumes. In brief, federal resumes are typically 3 to 5 pages in length and will highlight each of your skills, abilities, accomplishments in your role. For more information about developing a federal resume, see the Writing Your Federal Resume article within Go Government Career Guides.

Resume Samples and Best Practices

Whether you are just starting a resume or you are looking to enhance your current draft, the following sample resumes and best practices can help 

Resume Basics Online Module

Looking for a little more help? Take a look at our 20-minute Resume Basics module. Click on the logo below to walk through the basics of building a great resume. 

UMD Careers Resume Basics Logo


Cover Letter Resources

What’s the best way to get your cover letter noticed? Learn more about writing cover letters, including formatting and what to include in the various paragraphs by visiting our Cover Letter Resources page here.

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