A common question in our resume workshops is how to address a gap in employment, particularly for parents re-entering the workforce. The good news is that by attending Amarillo College, you have already started the process to update your resume. By listing recent or ongoing education, you are demonstrating that your skills are up to date, including new trends and technology in your field. Here are some other suggestions for updating your resume with an employment gap:
- Use a functional format. A functional resume format organizes your experience according to skill clusters (for example, administrative skills, customer service skills) rather than chronologically according to job. A functional format may have the following order:
- Summary Statement – one to two sentence synopsis of who you are as a candidate and what you bring to the table
- Education – Amarillo College, anticipated graduation date, degree and major
- Skill clusters
- Chronological listing of experience
- Address the gap briefly in your resume in your cover letter. Use a title such as “full time homemaker” or “stay at home parent” as opposed to dressed up versions such as “family CEO” or “domestic engineer.” If you go into more detail, focus on transferable skills such as budget management and stay away from cutesy terms like “mom taxi”
- Incorporate volunteer work and community involvement. These experiences demonstrate ongoing professional development and transferable skills such as organization and leadership. They are also great ways to network within our community and build relationships with potential employers or important contacts.
- Seek out internships. These experiences will complement your education and provide hands-on experience in your field of study. Even if an internship doesn’t develop into a full-time job (although some do!), you will gain professional references who can speak to your skills and performance.
We are happy to help you develop your resume – attend a resume workshop, submit your resume on College Central for an email resume review, or stop by the Career Center for an in-person resume review! Good luck in your job search!