5 ways to make your CV stand out to Universities

You may currently be in sixth form or college and planning on going to university to further your education. Getting the grades you need to go to university is just the basis, which you need to excel from. Universities across the country have tonnes of applicants applying for the same course, all of which have the basic grades needed to enter. What they are desperate to see is a desire to show your passion for the subject/course or a way of showing them the skills you have learnt away from the classroom. I have put together five amazing opportunities to show the qualities that universities are desperate to see.

1. NCS

Also known as The National Citizen Service, it’s an amazing opportunity available to students aged between 15-17.Its available throughout the year across many weeks so there’s no excuse to not take part. It’s a three-week experience where you meet a host of new people. The first week consists of outdoor activities that include rock-climbing, gorge walking, canoeing and much more. The second week is where your dream of moving away from home becomes a reality. You get an experience of university life by learning a skill whilst cooking, cleaning and generally surviving without your parents. The skills consist of music, enterprise, art, sport, photography and much more. It’s a great way to consolidate friendships, learn a skill you’ve always wanted to pursue as well as making contacts with people who can help further your career. In the final week you put into action a social action project, its objective to help your confidence at interacting with the general public as well as trying to make a difference to your local community.

Your probably thinking the catch is in the price, but at no more than £50 it clearly isn’t. Its funded by the government, each place is £2000 and it really is a chance missed if you don't take it.

This experience will showcase to universities your ability to meet new people, enhance your teamwork skills as well as initiative to take up the opportunity.

2. Gap Year

This is not simply a holiday. It’s a way for people to get an opinion on the world around them. It’s a great way to take a step back from your life and appreciate what you have. There are people far worse off and the volunteer projects set up means you can make a difference to someone else’s life. These projects can also help uncover your identity and your ambitions for the future.

One organization that offers gap years is Project Trust. They select 280-300 passionate individuals from the UK and Europe to take part. They organise teaching, sport and social care projects to make a big impact on communities around the world. When volunteers return their maturity has risen and the transferable skills gained are invaluable to a successful career. This organization really supports you through your journey, helping you with the £6,500 needed for you to go on this once in a lifetime trip. It sounds a lot but its been assured that you get a long period to help raise funds. The main USP about this project is that this experience is taken by you and one other person, unknown to you before the project. Through this year you become friends for life, after experiencing the greatest the world has to offer.


Man using laptop

3. A Job

After two of the most exciting opportunities students have, we have to consider more tedious low profile options. A one of them. A job to most students is the bane of their life. However, it’s a straightforward way to earn money that you need for the summer holidays when you go to all those festivals.
A job also shows transferrable skills needed at university. Jobs aren’t easy and the determination to stick at one can really impress the person reading your CV. A job tells more about a student than a set of grades do.

4. Outside School Activities

This is a very simple option that rewards you currently and when you go to apply for universities. By playing a sport that you enjoy your showing responsibility and teamwork.

If sport doesn’t appeal to you, join any other club be it music or writing it doesn’t matter. What’s also very special is volunteering in your local community. This helps to show universities your commitment and dedication to an activity that rewards others.

5.School projects/Enrichment

Easily the least exciting option. Most students are desperate to get away from school, but it’s such a rewarding experience, only made easier by helping other students cope with stresses you may have encountered. Schools offer a range of opportunities such as prefecting, mentoring, showing parents round in opening evenings and helping you with projects in your local area. All of these help when it comes to teachers writing your references. You don’t want a teacher to just have to write about your academic grades, because universities want to see more.

Then Twist, 17. A-Level student.

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