Let Software Do the Work

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Youโ€™re reading an excerpt of Admitted by Soundarya Balasubramani. Written by an Ivy League graduate from India, this is the proven guide for students worldwide looking to pursue undergraduate or graduate study abroad in the U.S., Canada, or Europe. Purchase for instant access to the guide and other exclusive resourcesโ€”including sample SOPs, sample resumes, scholarship lists, and a private community with other readers.

Now, if youโ€™re wondering, is there not a tool that does part of the work for me?

The answer is a resounding yes!

Although we recommend crafting the resume yourself to get experience with LaTeX, you can use a tool that will simply take the input and spit out an ATS-friendly, good-looking resume. One such tool is ResumePuppy.* It was founded by Saiman Shetty,* an Einstein Visa recipient and a veteran product manager from Tesla and Lyft, and Anish Hegde,* another product expert from Yahoo and Signeasy. ResumePuppy is similar to Overleaf in its functionality, but has a more user-friendly interface.

Instead of letting you edit a LaTeX template, it lets you input content into pre-set fields under various sections of a resume. As of now, there is only one standard ATS-friendly template you can use for building your resume, but they are growing rapidly and have plans to add more features soon.

Glad you asked! We highly recommend following the design principles stated below:

  • Do not go below font size 10.5. Ensure that your name is bigger than your headings, which are bigger than your paragraphs (ideally, follow the format 24 / 12.5 / 10.5 and bold your headings).

  • Use one of the more well-known fonts such as Helvetica, Ariel, or Georgia (sans serif fonts are more suited for a digital resume, whereas serif fonts like Times New Roman are better for paper resumes).

  • Add strategic lines to partition your resume well. Itโ€™s recommended to add one below your name/contact details, one between various sections, and one to split the two columns (for a two-column resume).

  • Strictly adhere to margins to ensure it looks neat. The recommended size is between 0.5โ€“1 inches.

  • Stay away from using colors if you can. Sometimes, things should remain black and white.

We donโ€™t particularly recommend adding a summary at the top as it can seem redundant. However, if you have a catchy two-liner that youโ€™re itching to include, we wonโ€™t stop you.

Hopefully that gives you enough guidance to craft your resume. If you want to look at the complete resume that we were building in this chapter, head over to the Resources folder and go to the Sample Resumes sub-folder. Along with the two-column resume, there are other formats available.

You can also read more comprehensive articles on this topic** if you are looking for more inspiration. Now, put all this into practice and build your one-page marketing tool.

Student Testimonials

A resume is the first document that showcases your designing and organizing abilities. I created my resume in Photoshop. I believe using non-traditional software like Photoshop to create a resume showcases uniqueness in thought process and can be useful, especially if youโ€™re looking to work in the domain of design.

I found many pros to using Photoshop:

a) you can create a color palette that brings out the kind of person you are (for example, blue equates to calmness)

b) you can create guidelines and highlight the content you want on the page

c) you can create layers such that edits can be made to parts of the resume without impacting the rest of the content.

Overall, there are many commands that can be useful in showcasing your experiences and skills.

โ€”Vishal Kothari, The University of Texas at Arlington

I read a few sample resumes oriented towards graduate studies online. I stuck to using only two bullet points under each of my experiences, mentioned the courses that seemed directly relevant to the program, and kept the length to a single page. I also focused on the sentence structures for each bullet point so that every word counted.

What really helped was sitting with a friend of mine who was also applying for his masterโ€™s degree and editing our resumes together. Having more than one person review it goes a long way.

โ€”Om Vaghasia, Columbia University

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