Latin honors or cum laude is a fantastic academic achievement that you should list on your resume if you apply for your first job straight out of college. Whether you have a Magna or Summa cum laude, this distinction can put your resume at the top of the pile at any company you apply to. But where do you put it on your resume, and can you use this honor on your resume forever?
What are Latin Honors?
Latin Honors are a form of distinction given to students who have excelled academically in their college courses and set them above the rest in terms of grade-point averages. The distinction, also referred to as a cum laude, is bestowed upon the student at their graduation ceremony and can take the form of a Magna or Summa cum laude.
Magna cum laude refers to a great distinction, while Summa cum laude is the highest distinction one can earn. Students who have graduated with either one of the cum laude distinctions are seen as motivated and hard-working students and are more likely to get call-backs for further job interviews.
Should you list your Latin Honors on your resume?
If you have recently graduated and joined the job market for the first time, you should most definitely list your Latin honor on your resume. There are, unfortunately, limits as to how long you can list it on your resume without it becoming outdated and essentially useless.
Depending on the number of jobs you have had, and the years of work experience under your belt, you can safely list your honors distinction for at least the first five of your career or working life. Any longer than this date range is unnecessary and will have little to no influence on landing a job you have applied for. Employers and interviewers focus more on your experience in a field rather than your field of study.
While your academic record is useful in confirming that you have the correct qualifications, they are little more than a confirmation.
Top Tips for the Best Resume
Applying for your first job in the “real world” can be stressful and daunting. With companies filtering through hundreds of resumes daily from eager applicants hungry for work, you need to put together a resume to make you stand out from the crowd and guarantee you a call-back for an interview.
Your resume is possibly the most important document you will create in your life and is essentially a snapshot of your achievements, abilities, and qualifications.
Here are our top tips for creating the best resume possible:
#1: Keep it short and simple
Keep your resume as short as possible. Employers often skim-read resumes, looking only at the important information. Help them focus on your best achievements and qualifications rather than trivial information that has no bearing on your career. You can also use bullet points, numbering, and highlighting for certain skills.
#2: Adapt your resume
If you are eagerly applying for a more creative position at a design agency, you can use your skills to show off your design talents. Add creative flair to your resume with customized buttons, for example, without making it too childish. If the position is in a more “serious” work environment, such as a large corporation, adopt a business-like attitude and convey this with your resume.
#3: Always include: “Why I am the best for this position.”
This is a great little summary you can add to your resume. Keep your resume short and sweet or to the point, highlighting important achievements and qualifications to make you stand out. Let them know that you are eager to work for them, and possibly include a section about how your achievements can make a difference to the company.
#4: Be specific with dates, achievements, etc.
Suppose your previous role saw you raising profit margins by 40%. State exactly that. While it is easy to talk about how your work influenced the success of a company or project, draw attention to the achievement by being specific about what the success was and when you achieved it.
#5: Use keywords
Most companies use a database to keep track of the resumes they receive when they post a job advert online or in print media. You can use many resources to point out the keywords that these databases use to filter resumes. You can find these online and use them to get your resume seen.
#6: Proofread, Proofread, Proofread!
When applying for a job, extreme attention to detail, like language use, is important. A simple spelling or grammatical error can land your resume a spot in the trash can. Read your resume, then read it again. Ask a friend, family member, or student adviser to proofread it for you, as this is a perfect opportunity to identify errors you might have missed.
While we have highlighted the most important factors to consider when putting together your resume, there are, of course, others that come to play. These include photographs (which are a big no-no in the business world) or listing your birthdate.
Companies are no longer allowed to discriminate or choose an employee based on their specific age group, gender, ethnic group, religious beliefs, and sexual orientation. You can safely leave this information off your resume as it should have no bearing on your overall ability to perform your tasks and complete the job at hand.
A Magna or Summa cum laude achievement is something to be proud of and should be displayed on your resume when applying for jobs fresh out of college or university. This can help set you above the rest of your fellow job seekers as you enter the real world of work, salaries, bills, and more.
Most employers view your Latin honor as an excellent example of solid work ethic and motivation and will more likely than not land you a call-back for an interview. Follow the rest of our top resume tips to create the best resume possible.