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Since I am an academic, who happens to be a costumedesigner, I make a point of listing my education first. The choice of which categories youput first in your resume, can and should be a clue to the reader about where your ownpriorities in your work lie.

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I am fortunate in having a rather weird and memorablesubject for my dissertation. It helps you to stick in peoples minds. Try when working onyour resume to remember the thing or things you've done that might cause you to be mildlymemorable in a stack of very similar documents. Not all Ph.D.'s list the title of theirdissertation in a resume. Because I know mine sounds memorable, I do.

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This is a perfect example of something that could beomitted over time. Since I have a BA, MA, and Ph.D., it hardly matters that I also had twoyears of junior college. However, I haven't dumped it because it is a well known juniorcollege with lots of famous graduates, and very many of my West Coast colleagues eitherwent there or know someone who did. My high school, whose only famous student was a 16year old ax murderess, is long since gone from my resume.

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Please note how much information is packed into asmall orderly section. One of the main keys to resumes, is to convey as much informationas possible, in as easy to digest a manner possible. Also, the order of this section againshows the reader which areas I am most proud of. Teaching costume history and design comesfar before work on the Faculty Senate and as department chair, another way I try to tellthe reader who I am, and what my priorities are.

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I try to be as accurate in describing my position inany work situation as possible. Heavily inflated resumes usually "smell funny"to the reader, a super-accurate looking one builds confidence in the credentials set outin them.

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. However, there are times when it helps to fudge. Thereal name for this course was Appreciation of Great World Drama, which sounded so verypretentious and silly, I "shortened" it.

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Although this play has nothing seemingly in it toconnect it to costume design, it sits in my resume to tell folks I'm capable of working inother areas of theatre.

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However, I do not shorten the titles of my articles.The reason for this is simple, by giving them their full length, they are much moreexplanatory of my specialized interests and knowledge.

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This is also not a costume related piece of writing.I leave it in, along with several other references to my traveling talents, to hopefullyattract an employer who wants a professor to start a travel study program for theirdepartment.

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Papers are much easier to find time to do thanarticles. If you are having trouble demonstrating your areas of interest, and only havedesign credits (which usually don't say what your interests are,) volunteering to lectureon topics of interest at theatre conferences is a pretty painless way to give your resumesome personality. Besides which, to get conference folks to come, you need the sort ofcatchy titles that look intriguing in print.

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Areas like this help to tell people I'm able to runmy own costume shop. The dates also tell that I "worked from the bottom up"through the craft areas, so I know them thoroughly.

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Explanations of what you did need not be lengthy.Every reader may not understand every abbreviated description, but most will if you stickto the main point.

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A memorable or unusual job can stick on your resumefor years. It aids in interview conversation, because people are always curious about it.It also aids in being remembered in a stack of resumes. I recall reading close to fiftyresumes for a choreographer position once, and the two I still remember were respectivelya Mouseketeer and a Royal Ballet dancer years before I was born. Neither was stupid enoughto "drop" these long ago credits, although their work accomplished since hadlong ago made their old work irrelevant.

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This Page is part of The Costumer's Manifesto, originally founded by Tara Maginnis, Ph.D. from 1996-2014, now flying free as a wiki for all to edit and contribute. Site maintained, hosted, and wikified by Andrew Kahn. Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License; additional terms may apply. See Terms of Use for details. You may print out any of these pages for non-profit educational use such as school papers, teacher handouts, or wall displays. You may link to any page in this site.