Write to the Point!

A Neighborhood Studios Program at the Mark Twain House

Apprentices Get Tips on Writing a Resume, Searching for Work

DOL Gordon Gross

Gordon Gross of the state Department of Labor addresses Neighborhood Studio apprentices about resume writing and searching for a job.

By June Tran

Writing apprentice

Mark Twain Studios

Cramped into a small classroom in the back of the Hartford Public Library children’s section, about two dozen teenagers got a lesson on landing a job.

In Neighborhood Studios, Mondays are set aside for career skills. In front of the youth stood Gordon Gross, a career development specialist with the state Department of Labor, coming to lecture them on the mechanics of resume writing.

Gross began by emphasizing the importance of a resume in the process of getting a job. A job, however, was not the primary purpose of a resume, he told them.

As Gross explained, a resume’s main purpose is to illicit a job interview.

After passing out a 10-year-old guidebook, Gross listed some tips for writing a good and effective resume:

1.      Always include details listed in the job ad on the resume.

2.   Make use of verb tenses to indicate the status of each job.

3.      Looks matter: make your resume easy to read and attractive.

4.      Write in fragments, not in complete sentences.

5.      Have at least three professional references.

According to Gross, it’s paramount for each student to write a resume that can endure a quick and competitive selection course.

Essentially, a resume can only confer numbers and a vague picture of the candidate.  And Gross said some employers might even use machines to comb through the applications.

In a nation that is recovering from an economic recession, getting a job is still hard for those with little work experience or education.

This is a blow for teenagers who are applying for a job, especially if it’s their first one.

To improve their chances and help make up for lack of experience, Gross recommended that youth get involved in volunteer work or join an association.

Being in an association is a great way to practice networking, he said.

Networking, Gross said, is fundamental to pursuing a specific field or career in the future. One way to do this is to “schmooze,” Gross said.

Schmoozing is not ass kissing, he said, but to building a relationship with someone within an organization or company where you might want to work.

Because most jobs are not posted, but listed internally, networking would be a great way to get information about careers without facing the huge competition of the job market.

Although these career tips are short and to the point, Gross encouraged the students to visit the State Department of Labor at 3580 Main St., Hartford if future concerns arise.

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