Leave these 10 things off your resume

Salary.com offered tips on 10 things to leave off your resume and cover letter:


  1. An outlandish, overconfident or “out there” objective statement. It’s great to appear ambitious, but don’t write that your goal is to steal your potential employer’s job.
  2. Irrelevant job experience. If you’re applying for a position as a copy writer, experience cashiering at a grocery store will most likely not help you land the job.
  3. Irrelevant achievements and awards. If you’ve won a public relations award, it may be appropriate to include it in your cover letter. But if the achievement doesn’t directly relate to the job you’re applying for, leave it out.
  4. Physical characteristics. Please do not send in your head shot or details like your weight, height or hair color.
  5. Irrelevant hobbies. If a hobby of yours is blogging, including that information may be a great way to show you’re interested in your field. However, writing that you love quilting or are on the top of the Rock Band leader boards will look strange if you’re applying for a communications position at an insurance company.
  6. Private details. Leave off information about your family and personal life.
  7. Bad grammar and big words. Industry speak is OK, but don’t constantly consult the thesaurus to try and make yourself look more intelligent by using big words.
  8. Unprofessional contact information. An e-mail address that reflects your name is best. Let your friends, not colleagues and potential employers, contact you at backstreetboyz4eva@yahoo.com.
  9. Sensitive personal information. While your social security number may be necessary on a formal job application, do not include it on your resume or cover letter.
  10. Attention-getting tactics: Elle Woods’ actions made it clear that pink, scented  resume paper is not professional.

The bottom line is that you need to stay on target and on message while writing your cover letter and resume. If you’re wondering if a specific piece of information should be included in your resume, e-mail the Journalism Department’s Placement Officer.

Read the full article here.

Ashley L. Akin’s Resume


The Universityof Tennessee - May 2005
Bachelor of Arts in English

GPA: 3.9 in major/ 3.75 overall
Honors: magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, University Honors Scholar

The University of Memphis
Master of Arts in Journalism/Public Relations
(in progress)- May 2011 (projected)
Honors: Phi Kappa Phi, Kappa Tau Alpha

Work Experience

The University of Memphis, Journalism Department, Memphis, TN
Graduate Assistant
August 2009 to present

  • Execute The Smallest User energy saving campaign by researching tactics, interacting with the community, and building and managing the website and all social media (Facebook page, Twitter feed, blog)
  • Manage the placement office for the department by finding and posting jobs and internships to the web weekly, helping students and alumni create professional resumes, and creating all web-related content for the office (website, Facebook, Twitter)
  • Assist Dr. Rick Fischer in grading papers, orchestrating class functions, and performing departmental tasks

M. Lee Smith Publishers LLC, Nashville, TN          
Tennessee Legislation Service      

Legislative Analyst

January 2007 – July 2009

  • Covered committee meetings, floor sessions, and press conferences to gather pertinent information for immediate publication while aiding in the supervision and training of TLS interns
  • Verified and input current status of all legislative action for the live TLS website and TLS reports using STAR software
  • Summarized bills and amendments to emphasize modifications made to current Tennessee law for TLS customers
  • Developed contacts with the Tennessee General Assembly staff and legislators to enhance customer service and guarantee accurate reporting
  • Trained customers and implemented improvements of TLS  from user feedback
  • Gathered facts and quotes for The Tennessee Journal weekly paper
  • Created both daily and weekly legislative agendas for distribution

Database Publishing Assistant
January 2007 – July 2009 (June – December of each year)

  • Independently researched, produced and distributed Calendar Alert to 150+ customers per week, which provided agendas for hundreds of upcoming government and association meetings
  • Typeset, formatted and edited sections of annual publications the Tennessee Attorneys Directory and Tennessee Government Officials Directory, each of which has a distribution of 1200+
  • Researched, compiled and input data for each directory using Adobe Framemaker
  • Managed alterations made to searchable databases to ensure accuracy and ease of use for customers
  • Revised and modernized website by adding information and creating new features for customer use

Snappy Auctions, Corporate Location, Nashville, TN
Assistant Manager
March 2006 – November 2006   

  • Composed professional and accurate item descriptions as well as continuously managed e-mail communication
  • Assessed value of items and marketed them to eBay audience for maximum sale prices
  • Photographed, packed, and shipped items while managing any disputes which arose
  • Single-handedly managed the corporate location after only three months of employment for one month during corporate restructuring

Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau, Memphis, TN
Media Relations Intern
May 2004 – August 2004

  • Wrote and edited press releases and assembled media kits
  • Coordinated events and planned activities for visiting journalists
  • Assisted in the organization and execution of The 50th Anniversary of Rock ‘n Roll at Sun Studios on July 5th, 2004

Skills, Accomplishments & Activities

  • Proficient in social media including Facebook, Twitter, blog software (WordPress, Blogger), Digg, Delicious, Flickr, LinkedIn, Posterous, Google Analytics
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint), STAR, and Adobe Systems (Framemaker, Photoshop CS4, Dreamweaver CS4); Type 70+ words per minute
  • Offered permanent employment with M. Lee Smith Publishers after completion of six month temporary position for exemplary work (new position created)
  • Hired to annual freelance position writing weekly legislative rundown of happenings on the Hill for lobbyists’ and associations’ newsletters during session months
  • Hired for freelance editing position for Thompson Dunavant, PLC law firm inMemphis
  • Contribute to the Memphis Farmers Market blog as a volunteer blogger

Contact Ashley here.