Since we had so much fun writing Michael Scott’s resume, we decided to up our pop-culture, fictional resume-writing game to include a character from another beloved TV sitcom: Friends.
Initially, we envisioned a sarcasm-peppered resume for our favorite funny man, Chandler Bing (excuse me, Miss Chanandler Bong), but we couldn’t quite figure out what a “transpondster” does, or if that’s even a word. As such, we pivoted (ha!) our attention to paleontologist–extraordinaire, Ross Geller, PhD.
Not only did Ross provide us with some entertaining content, but his career trajectory also presented us with an opportunity to showcase a curriculum vitae, or CV, the document of choice in most academic settings. We also had the chance to loop in an ACTUAL Holiday Armadillo, er, paleontologist who has some real-world thoughts on this very fictional character but more on that later!
For the most part, the first two pages of an academic CV closely resemble a traditional resume. As you’ll note from Dr. Geller’s CV, we begin with his name and contact information, followed by a header. Similar to a resume, the first third of the first page of the CV should include branding elements that visually frame the content that will follow. In this case, the header tells a hiring manager that Ross is a Professor of Paleontology, and we specify that even further by adding a subheader: Research, Higher Education Instructor, Museum Curator. These key words show our readers that Ross’s robust paleontology background enables him to excel in laboratory, instructional, and cultural settings. We couldn’t resist including Ross’s “I can’t get enough dinosaurs!” declaration as a branding statement of sorts since it hilariously sums up his career philosophy in just a few words.
Next, we have Ross’s professional profile. Just like a resume, a modern-day CV should include this section as it provides readers a high-level view of the applicant’s skills, accomplishments, and expertise. Of course, we had to call out Ross’s incredible ability to pivot (pi-VOT!) and collaborate worldwide (the one where he brought Julie home from China). The core competencies include content knowledge and technical skills that we hope Ross has mastered as a PhD-level paleontologist.
One aspect of a CV that differs slightly from a resume is the placement of the Education section. On a CV, we may place the Education section above Experience, since academic credentials and areas of specialty require high visibility. Ross loves telling everyone about his pedigreed degrees, so know he would want to feature his Ivy League education.
Next, we have highlighted the Teaching & Research Experience section to showcase Ross’s esteemed teaching career (debatable) at NYU. By splitting his faculty role into both Teaching and Research subsections, Ross has the flexibility to reorder them in order of importance, depending on the specific position he pursues next. Our tongue-in-cheek references to Ross’s, ahem, “fraternization” with students and colleagues as well as his keynote speech in Barbados (remember Monica’s humidity-challenged hair?) blend with typical professorial activities that we hope Ross found time to complete in between visits to Central Perk.
Quotes from lectures, presentations, or publications can help to drive home points of interest on a CV, such as Ross’s pronouncement that he conceptualized Jurassic Park long before it hit the big screen.
Our second page begins by highlighting Ross’s tenure with the New York Museum of Prehistoric History, including an eloquent description of the “MY SANDWICH!” incident. We hope he can expand on this point and explain lessons learned in an interview! On a real CV, we would include a full list of Ross’s publications, presentations, conferences, and speaking engagements, which could amount to several pages of text. Check out the link at the bottom of the second page for a detailed list of additional career accomplishments. Since CVs often include research interests and community engagement activities, we included some of our favorite Ross quotes that reflect his varied interests. From practicing Unagi to caring for his pet monkey Marcel, Ross has an extensive range of hobbies that may create common ground with a hiring manager during his job search – maybe he can find someone else who was adventurous enough to try wearing leather pants in the 90s (*writer sheepishly raises her hand).
Despite the many eccentricities of Ross Geller, we actually found a real paleontologist, Dr. Adam Pritchard, who had some kind words to say about him in this article. We reached out to Dr. Pritchard who confirmed his initial assessment and gave us permission to use one of his quotes on Ross’s CV. Unfortunately, Dr. Charlie Wheeler was unavailable for comment (perhaps she was on a break). Integrating short recommendations and quotes into resumes and CVs gives readers insight into the applicants’ impact on the organization’s overall goals and objectives, and we think Ross’s recommendations add to his credibility.
If you like the CV that we have created from Dr. Geller’s slightly sketchy employment record, imagine what we could do with your real-life accomplishments. Whether you need a CV, a resume, or a consultation to determine the next step of your career, we’ll be there for you (sorry, couldn’t resist)!