There is no denying that older job seekers face some unique challenges in the job market, and writing a resume education section is one of them. Some job search issues include the fact that older workers may have outdated resumes with education experience from 20 or 30 years prior and a lack of experience or training on the newest technologies in the working world. Career experts recommend that older job seekers start by updating their resumes, highlighting recent accomplishments and customizing resumes to directly address a company’s needs. Be sure to foresee and address the education and technology questions that potential employers might have.
What to Include in an Older Job Seeker Resume Education Section
Rather than highlight your years of experience, relate recent accomplishments and relevant education to the main responsibilities of the job. Older job seekers benefit by presenting themselves as lifelong learners who are willing to update their knowledge with newer training and certifications.
Omitting education dates when writing a resume education section may be a good idea. Emphasize recent training or certifications instead as a way to show how you have kept employment skills updated and relevant. A bulleted list of training classes, seminars, certifications and workshops will demonstrate fresh knowledge and skills that keep up with current business needs and practices.
How to Format an Older Job Seeker Resume Education Section
To most effectively present education information for an older job seeker when writing a resume education section, put the school name and location with the type of degree and major underneath.
For older workers who have degrees that are 20 or 30 years old, de-emphasizing education and dates of education can be beneficial. While a common way to present education in a resume is near the top for recent graduates, including month and year of achievement, when writing a resume education section for an older job seeker, leave out the dates of old degrees. Write this section further down your resume because employers will likely want to see your professional work experience first.
List your college degree, but highlight more recent training, education refreshers, workshops and on-the-job training that has more relevance. Include these experiences right above your main education as a bullet list so that the employer will see this information first.
Example of a Great an Older Job Seeker Resume Education Section
Here is one example of great older job seeker resume education section that emphasizes recent training over a college degree:
Microsoft Excel – Advanced Spreadsheet Calculations, Jan 2014
Microsoft Project – Beginner Certification, June 2014
Collaborative Teamwork – August 2014
Arizona State University – Phoenix, AZ
Bachelor of Science in Business Management, minor in Marketing
Here’s another example of an older job seeker placing training in a more prominent position on a resume:
Marketing Certificate – DePaul University, Chicago, IL – 2013
Digital Sales Certification – IAB, online – 2014
Illinois State University – Normal, IL
Bachelor of Arts in English
Education qualifications are important to include in any resume, but this section has to be handled differently for the older job seeker to get the most benefit. When writing a resume education section, the dates of formal education achievement such as college graduation are less important than training, knowledge and certifications that are relevant to the job and the employer.
You may want to browse LiveCareer for more ideas and resources for writing different sections of an ideal resume for an older job seeker.