UM Career Center Resume and Cover Letter Tips for PhD Students

A new resource for PhDs from UM’s Career Center includes worksheets that can help identify transferable skills and construct narratives that make the skills developed during a doctorate legible to employers. The packet also provides “brief introductions that explain various application materials, reflection tools that can help … articulate your experience, examples of application materials, and, core competencies from the National Association of Colleges & Employers (NACE) and the Rackham Graduate School.”

Resumes and Cover Letters for PhD Students

This resource for creating cover letters and resumes developed by Harvard’s Faculty of Arts & Sciences Office of Career Services includes answers to FAQs about preparing resumes and cover letters, a useful word bank for describing various career experiences, nine examples of resumes tailored to particular interests or career trajectories, and sample cover letters.

Converting a Curriculum Vitae to a Resume

This resource from the UC Davis Internship and Career Center provides a helpful breakdown of the different purposes served by resumes and CVs. It gives tips for structuring your resume’s content based on how employers use the information on resumes, as well as practical advice on formatting. It even links to examples that show side-by-side comparisons of these documents for the same individual.

Intro to Resumes for CV-Minded Academics

Crafting a resume when you are used to the academic CV format can be challenging. This article from the Gradhacker blog on Inside Higher Ed gives concrete suggestions for how to organize the information on your resume, how to mobilize keywords from job descriptions, and includes links to sample resumes.

Beyond Academia

Hosted by a group of graduate students at Berkeley, Beyond Academia provides “news and information to go beyond the ivory tower.” Articles discuss a variety of topics of interest to PhD professionalization, including interviews with PhD-holders working in a variety of careers, as well as resources for developing your resume and professional profile.

Translating Your Skills Into a Strong Resume

The Modern Language Association has prepared two helpful resources to help PhDs think about articulating the diverse skill sets they learn during their doctoral training. Learning to describe these academic skills in workplace language takes practice, and these documents are designed to help you translate your skills in language you can use to build a strong resume.

10 Things Smart PhDs Do NOT Put On Their Industry Resumes

This is a helpful list of dos and don’ts to use when making the transition from an academic CV to a professional resume. The author discusses some early mistakes he made when first applying to non-academic jobs, and offers a few simple ways to avoid common mistakes academics make during this process.  

Handbook for a Non-Academic Job Search

University of California Irvine has a handbook with advice on non-academic career exploration, cover letters, and sample resumes from PhDs in various disciplines. The handbook—a downloadable PDF—contains worksheets that help students articulate their goals and skills and move towards finding a career that best suits their interests and strengths.