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Career Highlights Examples for Freshmen — Definitive Guide

Career Highlights Examples for Freshmen — Definitive Guide

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There is often a section at the top of a resume called “career highlights”. This is a section where you should list the best achievements or highlights of your career.

As a freshman, you may not have many points you feel are worth mentioning in this section, so should you even include it?


Should a Freshman Put Career Highlights on a Resume?

It is not necessary for a freshman to include career highlights because most of them have not yet had careers. A “summary” section is more fitting and should be written around one’s goals for the future. You may also choose to not include this section if you have other experience to write about.

The career highlights section can be called “summary”, “career summary”, or “career profile”.

While they all accomplish the same thing and often hold the same information, freshman typically choose to call it a summary section instead of highlights.

A summary section would allow a freshman to focus on telling their career goals, as well as including some information about their current line of study.

A freshman writing a resume is often applying for a job within the university or a part-time job, so it is alright to focus on information about current studies. 

If the job you are seeking is not related to your current studies, then it is not necessary to include a career highlights section.

This section is usually reserved for highly experienced professionals, so if you have other work or volunteering experience, it is best to save space for those instead. 

If you do not have any experience and are having trouble thinking of things to include on your resume, however, then including some type of summary or goals at the forefront of your resume is a great idea!

This can be done in a number of different ways and formats, so let’s look at a few!


Career Highlights Examples for Freshmen

Career highlights or a summary on a freshman’s resume should include information about current studies, any sort of research they have done, internships they have participated in, or their goals in the field. You may also include information about your availability due to classes.

Career highlights should be reserved for those who are applying within the field that they are applying to.

If a student is in the biology field and are applying for a biology research or TA position, then it is acceptable to name this section either “career highlights”, “career summary” or “summary”. 

Include the type of research or studies you have done, include relevant classes you may have taken on the subject, and any other relevant information that makes you stand out as an applicant.

You can list these in paragraph format or use bullet points

When formatted as a paragraph, this will look like the following:


Career Summary

Currently a first-year student studying biology at Stanford University with a focus on molecular biology. Taking classes on molecular biology, biology of cancer, and technical writing. Seeking a job within science research in order to gain experience in the field. 


It is recommended to keep the summary section to 3-4 sentences max to avoid taking up too much space. Paragraphs on a resume can easily make it too cluttered, so keep it brief enough that it can be read quickly.

To format this section as bullet points instead, it will look like the following:


Career Highlights

  • Taking courses in molecular biology
  • Researching academic databases
  • Compiling essays using data
  • Completing experiments
  • Recording variables in Excel format
  • Knowledge of lab safety protocol


Because the student is still in school and likely just started these highlights as they are a freshman, we will write it in the present continuous tense.

As with listing a current internship on a resume, once these highlights are in the past, you should change them to the past tense. 

Let’s look at another example which describes a freshman on the education career path seeking a job or internship in the education field:


Career Summary

Currently a first-year student seeking a bachelor’s degree in childhood education. Taking courses in the basics of math, English, science, and history to have a well-rounded repertoire of knowledge. Currently a volunteer tutor in the student career center on weekends.


This summary section puts it very plainly that the applicant is a student, but it shows a degree of earnestness and honesty that an employer may appreciate.

An employer in the same field as your goals will be likely be very supportive of an up-and-coming student.  

Let’s look at how we can reformat an education-based career summary paragraph and turn it into bullet points:


Career Highlights

  • Taking courses in education methodology
  • Studying math, science, English, and history
  • Essay and speech writing
  • Volunteer student tutor on weekends
  • Experienced in grammar, vocabulary, and syntax
  • Knowledge of lesson plan creation


Should you include career highlights for jobs outside of your field?

For jobs outside of the desired fields, freshmen should not include career highlights that focus on their studied area (such as biology or education).

This is because most of this information is irrelevant to an employer who is, for instance, offering a part-time job at the bakery. 

In a case such as an irrelevant part-time job, students should focus on writing a brief summary that includes their school availability, their goals with the desired job, and perhaps why they are seeking this particular job. 

This section may also be called the “goals” section, however, this is becoming an outdated term as of late, and “summary” is more common. Let’s use a bakery job as an example, and see how this may be formatted:



A full-time student at Stanford University studying Veterinary Medicine seeking a part-time job to supplement school studies. Available on weekends any time, and weekday evenings. Experienced in baking cakes and muffins from scratch, and am motivated to learn more!


It’s a good idea to include a summary like this for a job you aren’t necessarily experienced in because it shows that you are motivated and determined while being upfront that you aren’t available full-time.

This saves both you and the employer time if they are only looking for full-time workers.