How to spin volunteer work?

BlackCrow's picture
Rank: Monkey | 62

Long time lurker first time poster on this great website!

As I am preparing for SA 2013 recruiting, I am building my S&T CV but I am having trouble spinning a volunteer experience that is utterly unrelated to finance. I taught English as a foreign language to immigrants some of whom had disabilities. I don't know how I could frame it best so I am coming to you for your expert advice.

Thanks in advance.

Comments (29)

Sep 9, 2012

Isnt it enough to say that you care? All traders aren't heartless bastards

PS - The extracurriculars won't get more than a passing glance. Just say "volunteer language teacher for disabled immigrants"

Sep 9, 2012
<span class=keyword_link><a href=/company/goldman-sachs rel=nofollow><abbr title=Goldman Sachs&#10;>GS</abbr></a></span>:

Isnt it enough to say that you care? All traders aren't heartless bastards

PS - The extracurriculars won't get more than a passing glance. Just say "volunteer language teacher for disabled immigrants"

+1

I am much more interesting in your volunteer work and other quirky things in your resume then your 4.0 GPA
"Um so let's talk about that 4.0 GPA and the leadership finance club you have here on your resume"
Or "How was it to teach to disabled immigrants? What type of program was it? Who is sponsoring it? How did you become involve in that? WHere do you get the funding? Etc...."
You get the gist...

Sep 9, 2012

Put it as one of your last experiences - at the bottom of your "work & relevant experience" section. Include maybe 2 bullet points, one explaining what the thing's about and the other your accomplishments.

I think it's good that you're including a volunteer (a non-finance) experience. It makes you not look like one of those "I-wanted-to-be-on-wall-street-since-freshman-year" people.

Sep 9, 2012

Most people know volunteer work on resume is something between creative fiction and complete lies, so don't overdo it

The Auto Show

Sep 9, 2012

Volunteering shows you don't just sit around and think like a robot. No spin should be necessary; giving back speaks for itself.

Metal. Music. Life. www.headofmetal.com

Sep 9, 2012

Thanks! I'll put it in my resume with two bullet points explaining what kind of work I did.

Sep 9, 2012

Might suggest you can feel empathy. Probably best you didn't.

Sep 9, 2012
When_the_Pawn:

Might suggest you can feel empathy. Probably best you didn't.

Love this. Good traders don't have emotions, just money.

Sep 9, 2012
When_the_Pawn:

Might suggest you can feel empathy. Probably best you didn't.

This.

Sep 9, 2012
When_the_Pawn:

Might suggest you can feel empathy. Probably best you didn't.

agreed

Sep 9, 2012

I have some volunteer work on my resume. When I was interviewing for jobs, some people were subtly skeptical about me, and my interest in finance, because of it, and even seemed a bit defensive. Others really liked it and my experiences volunteering were an topic in the conversation. So it can go either way.

Sep 9, 2012

A single line if you have room

heister:

Look at all these wannabe richies hating on an expensive salad.

https://arthuxtable.com/

    • 1
Sep 9, 2012

Not gonna make much difference.

"I do not think that there is any other quality so essential to success of any kind as the quality of perseverance. It overcomes almost everything, even nature."

Sep 9, 2012

I'm not sure it'll help you get to interview, but from my experience it's always discussed quite a lot at interview (competencies, CV walk throughs, etc).

Sep 9, 2012

I'd agree with the above. It's hard to see how that alone would be the difference between interview or none. I've got a friend in IB who spent time teaching in rural villages in Africa and it was something the interviewers were impressed by. It can certainly serve as an interesting discussion point during your interview. Perhaps weave into your story and they may ask about it.

Sep 9, 2012

I think it would help get you the interview if you are already qualified without it and they are deciding between two qualified candidates and one has this experience. It definitely won't make up for a lack of relevant experience/qualifications.

Sep 9, 2012

If you haven't done this yet and are considering something like this during a summer, keep in mind relevant experience/an internship will be infinitely more beneficial (career-wise; perhaps this will be better for you as a person/your life haha).

Sep 9, 2012

sounds like an interesting experience for a freshmen summer.. Obviously this wouldn't hold true anymore starting sophomore summer

Sep 9, 2012

Let us know about your "epiphany" when you come back.

Sep 9, 2012

Be careful going to Kenya...don't go to that mall if you're not a muslim.

Sep 9, 2012

I would think it can only work in your favor- it shows you actually accomplished something over winter break while most other college students slept in until noon. And I'd guess the experience would offer at least decent networking opportunities, but then again I'm not the best person to answer that question.

Either way, if you really enjoy that type of work, don't let how it would look on your resume affect your decision.

Sep 9, 2012

hi friend, i think i can hlp you... if you like free work why don`t you just to that instead????? why do you want to work at a investment banking if its not what you want to do???? i work in a financial services before and it really suck so i think that you should do what you like and not what you think is most popular or make the most money.... anyways, this is my advice and i hope that you find it helpful!!

Sep 9, 2012

Would be looked upon very favourably.
BBs like to think they are hiring people with well rounded balanced personalities. Plus, you'll have something interesting to talk about during your interviews. One of my interviewers at a BB spent a good five minutes going through the volunteering experience on my CV.

Sep 9, 2012
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Sep 9, 2012