Big List


It’s commonly said that each time you apply for a job you should tailor a resume to specifically meet the requirements of that job. But who has time to writing a new resume every time they apply for a new job? The secret is in having a "blueprint resume," a sort of master resume where you keep all the raw material from which to draw and hone situation-specific details. This assignment is the first step toward creating a blueprint resume—I call it the Big List.

Make a Big List by filling in whatever you can from the following categories. Don’t worry about formatting at this point; just get the raw materials down.


For every school you’ve ever attended, list the following things:

  • name
  • location
  • years attended
  • degree or diploma earned
  • GPA
  • any special distinctions (honors, dean’s list, etc.)


For every job you’ve ever had, list the following things:

  • your job title
  • the business’s name
  • location (city and state)
  • supervisor’s name and contact info
  • starting and ending date
  • description of duties
  • any awards, commendations, achievements, etc. If you have concrete numbers for anything (widgets sold, funds raised, goals met), make a note of it.


For each of the following, be sure to include the dates and locations and any other pertinent information.

  • List every extracurricular activity you’ve ever been a part of. Think: clubs, sports, trips, bands, competitions, etc.
  • List every community service activity you’ve been involved in.
  • List any volunteer work or internships you’ve done, including the same information you included for your work experience above.
  • List every scholarship, award, or honor you’ve ever received, from the 2nd grade spelling bee on up. Call your mom and have her drag out that box where she keeps all your blue ribbons.
  • List any leadership experiences you’ve had, either in school, church, scouts, sorority, or something else.
  • List any trips you’ve been on: study abroad, mission trips, senior trips, band trips, even road trips.
  • List any performances or exhibitions you’ve been a part of: dance recitals, band concerts (school or rock’n’roll), art shows, etc.
  • List any big projects you’ve done: recording a CD, making a movie, painting a mural, designing a website, building a tree house, etc.


List any hard skills you have and to what extent you have them:

  • Languages spoken
  • Computer programs you’re proficient in
  • Knitting, fixing cars, drawing, drafting, micro-brewing, CPR certification, etc.


List everything you've ever published, if any—no publication too small.

Good Reasons

This last part is perhaps the most important. I want you think up every reason you can why you would be a good employee. Perhaps you work well with others; perhaps you are really smart. Whatever it is, put some thought into it and be creative, and then get it all out onto a piece of paper so you won’t forget. It might help to do it as a freewriting exercise (set yourself a time limit and then just start writing), or you might do well to imagine you’re in a job interview. Or you might even dink around on the internet googling “job interview advice” or “great job skills” and see what comes up.

Turn It In

This assignment should be uploaded to Canvas by classtime on the day listed on the schedule.