How to create a high school student resumé

How to create a high school student resumé
SEEK content teamupdated on 31 January, 2024

Leaving high school is an exciting milestone, whether you’re continuing your studies or headed into the workforce. As you start applying for jobs (or apprenticeships or university placements), you might have noticed the importance of a certain document: your resumé.

Even though you may not have any experience behind you, a resumé for a high school student is an essential tool. It provides a snapshot of your potential, showcasing your skills, experiences and interests. It’s a great way to paint a picture of who you are and what you can offer an employer. We'll take you through the steps of creating a resumé for school leavers and students that will leave a lasting first impression.

Purpose of a high school student resumé

Why does a high school student need a resumé? A resumé can help bridge the gap between your current school achievements and your future goals. Here are a few reasons why it’s worth spending time putting your resumé together.

Applying to university

University, or further education of some form, is the next step for many school graduates. Your resumé provides a great overview of your academic achievements, extracurricular activities, volunteer work, and any other relevant experiences. It’s a great way to showcase your strengths, interests and more, which may be vital if there’s strong competition for the degree or university you want to get into.

Applying to jobs

A resumé is essential when entering the workforce, whether you’re looking for part-time, summer or internship positions. It allows employers to gain a snapshot of your skills and suitability for the job. The resumé should highlight any relevant experience, such as volunteer work, school projects and leadership roles in clubs or sports teams.

Applying to scholarships

A resumé helps you stand out when applying for scholarships, offering an overview of your academic achievements, extracurricular activities, community service and any awards or accolades. Your resumé should emphasise any strengths or achievements that meet the scholarship's criteria.

Components of a high school student resumé

While you might not have extensive professional work experience behind you as a high school student, creating an effective resumé all comes down to what you include to put your best self forward. 

Profile summary

The profile summary is a brief introduction of who you are and what you offer. Its main purpose is to capture the reader's attention and make them want to learn more about you. Think of it as your personal ‘elevator pitch’, summarising your strengths and experiences that are relevant to the opportunity you’re applying for.

  • Brief introduction: mention your current educational status (e.g., “A recent high school graaduate...”).
  • Key qualifications: highlight any qualifications you have that make you a strong candidate. If you have any certificates, like a higher school certificate or a VCE, mention them here.
  • Relevant experiences or achievements: include any relevant experiences or achievements that align with the job or opportunity. This could be leadership roles in school clubs, participation in sports teams or volunteer work.
  • Personal traits: add a few personal traits that make you unique. These could be characteristics like being a quick learner or a creative thinker, or having good time management skills and a positive attitude.

Experience section

The experience section is where you can list your work history, including part-time jobs, internships, volunteer work and extracurricular activities. It’s an opportunity to provide some concrete examples of your skills and abilities in action. Here’s what to include:

  • Relevant duties and skills: for each experience listed, include a brief description of your duties and the skills you developed. Be specific about your responsibilities and try to quantify your achievements where possible (e.g., “Led a team of 5 in organising school charity events”).
  • Highlights and achievements: mention any significant achievements or highlights during your time in each role. This could include awards, recognitions, or successful projects you contributed to.

As a high school student, you may not have formal work experience. In this case, it's important to mention other types of experience that can demonstrate your skills:

  • Volunteer experiences: include any volunteer work you've done, such as community service, involvement in non-profit organisations, or participation in charity events. Describe the role you played and the skills you gained from these experiences.
  • Extracurricular experiences: this includes involvement in sports teams, clubs, student government and other school-related activities. Highlight any leadership roles or significant contributions you made in these activities.

Education details

The education section is an important part of a high school student’s resumé as it provides an indication of your commitment to learning, areas of academic interest and any notable achievements. It often forms the bulk of your qualifications, so it’s important to get right. Here’s what you should include:

  • Current school and location: start with the name of your high school and its location (city and state).
  • Estimated completion date: if you're still in high school, include your estimated graduation date. This gives the reader an idea of where you are in terms of education level.
  • Relevant courses: list any courses that are relevant to the job or opportunity you're applying for. For example, if you're applying for a tech internship, you might include computer science or mathematics courses.
  • Academic achievements: mention any academic honours, awards or recognition you’ve received. This includes impressive results in any school challenges or competitions. 

Key skills section

The key skills section is where you can showcase your abilities to paint a picture of your strengths beyond academic achievements and work experiences. It allows you to directly point out the skills you have that align with the opportunity you are applying for. Here are some high school resumé examples of what you can list:

  • Organisation: your ability to manage your space, your tasks and keep track of deadlines. 
  • Time management: the ability to efficiently manage your time, prioritise responsibilities and meet deadlines. 
  • Communication: both written and verbal communication skills are essential to include. If you can, mention specific communication skills, like writing reports or emails, giving presentations or contacting customers. 
  • Public speaking: if you have experience in public speaking, through presentations in class, participating in debate clubs, or MCing events, this is a valuable skill to list. 
  • Technical skills: depending on your interests and experiences, you might include skills like proficiency in software or coding languages, or other technical abilities relevant to your field of interest.
  • Teamwork: the ability to work well in a team, collaborate with others and contribute effectively to group projects.
  • Problem solving: your ability to identify problems, think critically and come up with effective solutions.

Common mistakes to avoid

When creating a resumé, especially as a high school student, it's easy to make little mistakes that can take away from your skills. Being aware of these can help you write a more professional resumé. Here are some key pitfalls to avoid:

  • Choosing a colourful, busy design: while it might be tempting to make your resumé stand out with colourful designs, it's important to keep it plain, so it’s easy to read. 
    Tip: stick to a clean, simple layout with a standard font. Use bolder, larger headings to create clear sections, and use bullet points to organise your information. 
  • Not using action verbs: using passive language can make your achievements seem less impressive.
    Tip: start your bullet points with strong action verbs like “managed,” “created,” “led,” or “organised”. This makes your experiences sound more dynamic and impactful.
  • Not proofreading: one of the most common mistakes is submitting a resumé with typos or grammatical errors.
    Tip: always proofread your resumé multiple times. It can also be helpful to have someone else review it, as they might catch errors you've overlooked.
  • Overloading with irrelevant information: it's important to keep your resumé concise and relevant.
    Tip: tailor your resumé to each application, focusing on experiences and skills that are most relevant to the opportunity. Keep it to one page, highlighting only the most significant points.
  • Failing to tailor the resumé: using a generic resumé for every application is a common mistake. 
    Tip: customise your resumé for each application. Review the job description or criteria and highlight the experiences and skills that align most closely with them.

Resumé template for high school students

Creating a resumé as a high school student with no work experience can be a bit daunting. However, with the right structure and content, you can still make your resumé eye-catching and memorable. The key is to showcase your skills, achievements and potential. 

Below is a high school student resumé with no work experience template that you can use as a starting point. Highlight your strengths in areas outside of work experience. Focus on what you have accomplished in school, through volunteer work and in extracurricular activities, to present a well-rounded picture of your capabilities. Include any hobbies you have that are relevant to your application.

[Your name in a large font]

Personal Information
[Phone number]
[Email address]
[Professional profile/Personal website] (optional)

Objective Statement
[Write a brief statement about your career or educational goals and what you hope to achieve in the position you're applying for.]

[Name of high school], [city, state]
Expected Graduation: [month, year]
Relevant Courses: [List any courses relevant to the job or field of interest]

Work Experience (if applicable)
[Job title], [employer name], [city, state]
[Dates of employment]

  • [Briefly describe your responsibilities and any achievements. Use action verbs and quantify results when possible.]

Volunteer Experience
[Role], [organisation name], [city, state]
[Dates of participation]

  • [Describe your role and contributions. Highlight any skills developed and achievements.]

Extracurricular Activities
[Activity name], [role/position], [school/organisation name]
[Dates of participation]

  • [Describe your involvement and any notable accomplishments.]


  • [Skill 1]: [Brief description or example of how you've demonstrated this skill]
  • [Skill 2]: [Brief description or example]
  • [Add additional skills as relevant]

Awards and Honours

  • [Award/Honour 1], [Year]
  • [Award/Honour 2], [Year]
  • [Add additional awards/honours as relevant]

Hobbies and Interests (optional)

  • [Hobby 1] [Mention any relevant skills]
  • [Hobby 2]  [Mention any relevant skills]

Available upon request.

H2: High school student resumé example

Creating a resumé as a high school student can be tricky if you’ve never had to write a resumé before. To help guide you, this example integrates the key components mentioned above, tailored to a high school student.

Jane Doe Resumé

Personal Information
Jane Doe
123 Maple Street, Hometown, State, 1234
Phone: (123) 456-7890
Email: [email protected]

Objective Statement
Motivated high school senior seeking a part-time position in retail, where I can apply my strong communication skills and dedication to customer service. Eager to learn and contribute to a collaborative team environment.

Hometown High School, Hometown, State
Expected graduation: June 2025
Relevant courses: Advanced mathematics, Economics

Work Experience
Volunteer, Hometown Community Library

June 2023 - Present

  • Assist in organising and cataloguing books.
  • Help set up and manage community events and reading programs
  • Strong organisational and customer service skills

Extracurricular Activities
Member, Hometown High School Debate Team
September 2023 - Present

  • Participate in debate competitions, honing public speaking and critical thinking skills.
  • Collaborate with team members to research topics and develop arguments.


  • Organisation: demonstrated through managing school projects and volunteer responsibilities.
  • Time management: balanced academic workload with extracurricular activities effectively.
  • Communication: strong written and verbal communication skills developed through debate team participation.
  • Public speaking: gained confidence and proficiency through regular debate competitions.

Awards and Honours

  • Winner, Regional High School Debate Competition, 2024

Available upon request.

Whether or not you have any professional experience behind you, creating a resumé as a high school student is a great way to showcase your strengths and abilities gained through education and other opportunities. Consider it an investment in your future that will grow and evolve as you gain more personal and professional experiences. 


How to create a resumé for a high school student with no work experience?

To create a resumé for a high school student with no work experience, focus on academic achievements, extracurricular activities, volunteer experiences, skills and any relevant school work. You can also highlight qualities relevant to the role. This can include things like leadership, teamwork and other soft skills.

What is an example of a high school student's objective for a resumé?

An example of a high school student's objective for a resumé could be: 

“Motivated high school student seeking a part-time position in retail, where I can apply my strong communication skills and develop my customer service skills. Eager to learn and contribute to a team environment”. 

This objective is clear, aligns with the job and highlights key personal strengths.

How do you put high school on your resumé if you haven't graduated yet?

If you haven't graduated high school yet, list your high school's name and location, followed by your expected graduation date. For example: “Example High School, Sydney, NSW. Expected graduation: June 2025”. 

Can I include my part-time job experience on a high school student resumé?

Yes, you can and should include casual and part-time job experience on a high school student resumé. It shows you have workplace experience, a proactive work ethic and time-management skills. List the job title, employer and dates of employment, and briefly describe your responsibilities and the skills you developed.

Should I include references on my high school student resumé?

Including references on a high school student resumé is optional. If you have limited space, you can simply state “References available upon request”. If you choose to include references, make sure they are people who can positively attest to your abilities and character, such as teachers or supervisors from volunteer work. And make sure you ask them first!

Can I include extracurricular activities on my high school student resumé?

Absolutely. Including extracurricular activities on your resumé is highly recommended. They can showcase skills such as leadership, teamwork and time management. Include activities like sports teams, special interest clubs and any other activities or groups outside of school.

More from this category: Resumes

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