The Manpower Career Coach Blog is pleased to present a mini-series of blog posts highlighting the experiences and advice from a workplace newbie. These posts will provide value to all job seekers, regardless of your career history.

Work experience always looks impressive on a resume. It conveys that if an employer were to hire you, you’d have some clue of what the world of work is like. That’s why acquiring internships these days are such a phenomenon. It’s one of the best ways for student to get legitimate, work experience. But what do you do if your work experience is basically nonexistent? Here are a few ideas:

  1. Volunteer. Volunteer. Volunteer: Organizing an event, either for your school or your community, requires all sort of business skills and interactions. It not only gives you needed experience, but also shows you’ve got initiative and leadership, something all bosses like to see.
  2. List relevant courses: At the very top of your resume, in between your academic credentials and work experience, list academic classes you’ve taken that pertain to the job you’re trying to secure. For example, my sophomore year, I took an IT Management class, and excel was drilled into my brain – I will highlight that detail on my resume if I’m trying for an IT-based job.
  3. Letters of Recommendation: This isn’t technically part of your resume, but it’s always nice for employers to hear from someone other than yourself how awesome you are. This holds true for LinkedIn Recommendations as well.
  4. Club Involvement/Leadership Positions: Being a club member doesn’t equate to working part time for the advertising agency in your town, but, depending on the club, it’s a way to highlight your skill set, enthusiasm and work ethic. For example: You’re in the Spanish Club – make sure you include it on your resume! Everyone wants to hire someone who can speak more than just English these days).