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Resume and Interview Tips for LGBTQ Students

Should LGBTQ activities be featured on a resume?

Option 1:

Include these activities, and proudly demonstrate the skills that you have developed as a result. If you’re pursuing opportunities with organizations where your sexual orientation is a non-issue, then the strengths and skills developed through these organizations will be seen as workplace assets and the activity in which you developed them will also be a non-issue.

Option II:

Focus more on the accomplishments and skills developed through participation in the activity, as opposed to the activity itself. The strengths and skills developed will still be seen as workplace assets. This approach would allow you to demonstrate leadership experience and transferable skills such as communication, organizational, critical thinking and problem solving abilities. In this approach, it could be appropriate to substitute an organization name for Diversity Club or Anti-Discrimination Club.

Option III:

Omit any reference to LGBTQ organizations or activities. Some recruiters, gay or straight, will recommend using this approach. It is important to consider the relevance of the activity to the position for which you are applying, and whether or not you are writing information that you are prepared to discuss during the interview. Remember the purpose of the resume is to get you the interview, and you will need to be comfortable and prepared to elaborate on all achievements and skills in detail, as listed on your resume.

As you can see, there is no right or wrong way to handle LGBTQ activities on a resume. The answer depends on both the audience for the resume as well as your willingness to share and discuss your participation in LGBTQ groups and activities.


Do I have to list my legal name on my resume if it indicates my gender rather than my preferred name?

The process of identifying how comfortable you feel about disclosing your sexual orientation and gender identity to a potential employer will help determine how you approach this portion of your resume.

You can list any name you choose on your resume. Many students list preferred names or nicknames rather than legal names. Some students will abbreviate their legal first name to one letter, then list their preferred name and last name, i.e. J. Marissa Jones. However, you are required to provide your legal name when completing a formal job application as this serves as a legal document.

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