5 Student Work Experiences That Will Make You Stand Out From The Crowd

Posted by GradConnection

Want to know what employers and recruiters look for in a resume?

It’s a two-step process. You need to have relevant experience and then showcase it. Do it right and you’ll be interviewing in no time. Do it wrong and your precious resume could end up in the recycling bin.

Learn how to build an impressive resume with these 5 fun work experience ideas and resume tips.

Student Jobs

Whether it’s retail, babysitting or hospitality, there are so many choices when it comes to the best part-time jobs for students. What makes a good work experience for one person, might be another's worst nightmare. Try to find something that plays to your strengths and that you’ll actually enjoy.

If working and studying at the same time seems like too much for you to manage, you can always look for short-contract or seasonal work during the holidays.

Skills gained from student jobs

Look for opportunities to develop these skills and add them to your resume:

  • Working under pressure
  • Responsibility
  • Teamwork
  • Initiative
  • Communication

What employers look for in a resume

The skills gained from babysitting may not at first seem to correlate with those of your chosen career. Don’t make the person reading your resume do the work. It’s up to you to find the most relevant points and convey them across clearly.

Clubs & Associations

Looking for a fun work experience idea? Try combining work and play. If you have a hobby that takes up a lot of spare time, see if you can use it to your best advantage when entering the workforce.

If you play soccer at a local club, for example, see if you can also do some refereeing or coaching.

Skills gained from sports clubs and other associations

Look for opportunities to develop these skills and add them to your resume:

  • Project management
  • Team management
  • People skills
  • Strategy
  • Book-keeping/Budgeting
  • Communication

What employers look for in a resume

The more you are involved in your club of choice the better it will look on your resume. Apply for leadership positions when they become available and highlight your achievements.


One of the top work experience tips for students is to look for a summer internship before you graduate. It’s probably going to be the most relevant example on your resume because you’ll actually be working in the career of your choice. It’s also a great opportunity to build your network.

Skills gained from an internship

Look for opportunities to develop these skills and add them to your resume:

  • Initiative
  • Collaboration
  • Adaptability
  • Problem-solving
  • Commercial awareness

What employers look for in a resume

Your internship is something hiring managers and recruiters will look for in a resume. Make sure to put it near the top so it won’t be overlooked.

The internship market is competitive. Sign up for your free GradConnection account today to receive personalised alerts with the latest opportunities.

Freelance work

The great advantage of freelance work is that you can do it anytime. This makes it one of the best jobs for busy uni students. Not only does freelancing highlight your skillset to recruiters and employers, but it also shows good business acumen.

Skills gained from freelancing

Look for opportunities to develop these skills and add them to your resume:

  • Time management
  • Stakeholder management
  • Pricing
  • Sales and branding

What employers look for in a resume

Ask your clients if they will be your references. This is one of the hardest sections to fill when you’re entering the job market for the first time. Your clients can testify to your skills and the quality of work you produce.


Despite not getting paid to volunteer, it can be equally valuable to a hiring manager or recruiter. Look for opportunities that require similar skills to your chosen career path.

For example, if you want to get started in marketing see if you can write blogs and raise awareness for a charity.

Skills gained from volunteering

Look for opportunities to develop these skills and add them to your resume:

  • Teamwork
  • Leadership
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Time management
  • Prioritisation

What employers look for in a resume

Make sure the skills gained from your volunteer work are relevant to the job you’re applying for. Highlight the impact you made on the organisation. Be specific and include statistics where possible.

Time to get started

With so many fun work experience and summer job ideas, the world is your oyster. Use these tips to carefully plan your next move and create a winning resume.

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