Step 2: Create Your CV

Student Years 2-4: Prepare Your Curriculum Vitae (CV)

It’s never too soon to get started on your curriculum vitae (CV), and it should be continually updated as you progress through school. Don’t overreach. Appreciate that your CV is not a substitute, but rather a complement to you as an individual. Everyone’s CV starts out fairly “bare bones,” and then grows as you grow in your career. It should, however, highlight distinct aspects of your training and experience that may differentiate you from other students. 

Areas to focus on when writing your CV:

  • Where did you do your undergraduate work and what did you study?
  • Are you coming straight from undergraduate school or do you have relevant previous work experience?
  • What is your involvement in organizations? This will emphasize personal interests and initiative.
  • Have you been involved in any research projects?
  • While your CV should be kept as professional as possible, it is acceptable to personalize portions of it with your interests and hobbies.

You should also begin to accumulate letters of recommendation and a reference list. This is something that you will need throughout your career, so start out by keeping everything as organized as possible. Be sure to ask faculty members for permission before you include them on any reference list, and ask for letters of recommendation as early in the process as possible.

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