Menu Menu

Question – Should I mention school achievements on my CV?

Wondering whether it’s worth mentioning your extra-curricular activities on job applications? Our career coach has some advice that could help.

Question: Should I actually mention school achievements like Swimming Team Captain on my CV, or does it make me seem childish? Saanvi, New Delhi

School Swimming Team Captain is a great achievement and could have a place on a CV, depending on where you are in life.

If you’ve only recently left school, you won’t have much work experience to draw upon. Extra-curricular activities give you the opportunity to demonstrate transferable skills that employers (or other educational institutions) look for.

In this case, being Swimming Team Captain could demonstrate leadership, dedication, and organisation.

The best way to get this across – as with anything on a CV – is to provide the evidence for these skills.

So don’t just put ‘Swimming Team Captain’, add some detail about how many teammates you led, how often you trained, or what organising you had to do. Include data points and outcomes, so the reader can understand the scope of your work and your impact.

However, the further on in life you are, the less important school achievements are for recruiters. Recruiters place a lot of emphasis on your work experience, and on your most recent activities.

So by the time you are leaving university, or have spent 2-3 years in the workplace, I would expect your school achievements to have been taken off the CV, and replaced with fresh activities and additional work experience.

Deleting things from our CVs can feel painful! Often they are very significant achievements for us personally.

Remember that your CV isn’t for you though – it’s for recruiters, and should be tailored to what’s important for them.