When you’re applying for a job that requires more work experience than you have, putting the right extracurricular activities in your CV can get you an interview.

You should list extracurricular activities in CVs if:

  • they’re related to the jobs you’re targeting
  • you still have space on your CV after adding your relevant experience and skills

So if you need to put extracurricular activities on your CV, the next step is deciding which ones to add. To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of good extracurricular activities for your CV, along with the skills that they show your potential employers and examples of how to write about them in your CV.

7 good extracurricular activities for CVs

Extracurricular activities that show employers you’d be a great hire include:

  1. student union positions
  2. sports
  3. performing arts
  4. overseas travelling
  5. volunteering
  6. clubs and societies
  7. job-relevant hobbies

1. Student union positions

Did you hold a student union position during your uni days? Great! Being in student leadership lets you practise and develop skills that transfer to all types of work, including the following:

Skills shown by student union extracurricular activities in CVs

  • Leadership
  • Collaboration
  • Delegation
  • Responsibility
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Organisation

Example of student union extracurricular activities in a CV

  • Student union secretary: Allocated funds for various events and helped grow the budget from £5,000 to £10,000 through various fundraising events

2. Sports

Playing sports on a university team — or even casually as part of a student-organised group — is a good extracurricular activity to highlight when you write your CV. Athletics mirrors professional roles in many ways, requiring skills like those listed below:

Skills emphasised by sports extracurricular activities in CVs

  • Teamwork
  • Physical fitness
  • Strategising
  • Competitiveness
  • Coachability
  • Discipline

Example of sports extracurricular activities in a CV

  • Basketball club president: Organised and participated in 3 yearly tournaments, leading my 5-on-5 team from last-place finishers to two-time university champion through regular practices

3. Performing arts

Whether you studied theatre or played sappy love songs at open mics around your university town, you can include performing arts as an extracurricular activity on your CV to show employers that you’re creative and comfortable in front of a crowd.

Skills shown by performing arts extracurricular activities in CVs

  • Public speaking
  • Open-mindedness
  • Flexibility
  • Self-motivation
  • Positive reaction to criticism
  • Fast learner

Example of performing arts extracurricular activities in a CV

  • Comedian: Performed in 3 weekly open mics and improv shows, and punched up short film scripts for friends in the film department

4. Overseas travelling

Taking a gap year or spending your summers exploring foreign countries is fun, and it also tells employers a lot about what type of employee you’d be.

Skills highlighted by travelling extracurricular activities in CVs

  • Time management
  • Resourcefulness
  • Cultural awareness
  • Foreign languages
  • Scheduling
  • Independence

Example of travelling extracurricular activities in a CV

  • Travelling: Spent summers in the United States and Mexico, making a solid network of friends and adapting to each country’s working culture as a part-time customer service worker

5. Volunteering

You didn’t receive a paycheque for any voluntary work you did during school. However, the experience you earned is extremely valuable, as it could help you land a job that starts you down a rewarding career path.

Extracurricular voluntary activities like working at an animal shelter or fundraising for a politician demonstrate skills like these on your CV:

Skills shown by volunteering extracurricular activities in CVs

  • Work ethic
  • Empathy
  • Social consciousness
  • Community organising
  • Passion
  • Responsibility

Example of voluntary extracurricular activities in a CV

  • Volunteering: Saved the organisation £3,000 by convincing local taxi companies to donate drivers to deliver meals to families in need

6. Clubs and societies

Joining university clubs and societies is a good way to show employers that you’re proactive in your approach to life and work. Also, you may encounter a recruiter or manager who’s in an association with you, which increases your chances of forming a connection and getting hired.

Skills shown by club and society extracurricular activities in CVs

  • People skills
  • Self-motivation
  • Social interaction
  • Curiosity
  • Networking
  • Ambition

Example of club and society extracurricular activities in a CV

  • World Cinema Society: Participated in monthly film critiques which led to co-authoring 3 articles published in renowned art journals

7. Job-relevant hobbies

Any interest that you pursue during your studies can be a valuable addition to your CV — even if it wasn’t part of an organised activity. Employers want to see that you have a well-rounded life, because people who are happy outside of work make the best employees.

Skills shown by hobby-related extracurricular activities in CVs

  • Self-starter
  • Determination
  • Varied interests
  • Problem solving
  • Self-management
  • Eagerness to learn

Example of hobby-related extracurricular activities in a CV

  • Pub quizzing: Studied to compete in pub quizzes, placing in the top two in 15 competitions, and eventually wrote and hosted my own monthly quiz night

How to add extracurricular activities in your CV

The way you describe your extracurriculars — and where you put them — on your CV depends on your specific situation. Here’s everything you need to know about how to put extracurricular activities on your CV:

1. Decide where to put them

If your extracurricular activities are a main feature on your CV (i.e., they’re standing in for traditional work experience), summarise the skills you used during those activities in your personal statement.

Also, make an extracurricular activities section below your personal statement and education sections to fully describe them with role titles and dates in headers, and bulleted lists of your responsibilities and accomplishments.

If your extracurricular activities are supplemental to your relevant work experience, list those activities briefly in your education section.

Here are examples that show how to highlight your extracurriculars in these three CV sections:

Extracurricular activities in a CV personal statement

Trend-tracking recent graduate with a Bachelor’s in Marketing and experience running successful social media campaigns for student organisations. Turned a £500 investment in targeted YouTube ads into £4,000 via increased membership dues. Excited to apply similar techniques as a Social Media Specialist at Aztecorp.

Extracurricular activities in a dedicated CV section

Relevant Extracurricular Activities

Senior Resident, University of York, January 2022—June 2023

  • Provided guidance and support to a diverse group of 50 residents, promoting their overall well-being and academic success
  • Conducted weekly room inspections, ensuring compliance with housing regulations and fostering cleanliness and comfort within the halls of residence
  • Facilitated conflict resolution among residents, reducing reportable incidents from 56 the previous semester to 12

Extracurricular activities in an education section

University of York (2020–2023)
BSc (Hons) Mathematics, upper second class honours (2:1)

Relevant Modules
Multivariable Calculus and Matrices, Statistical Inference and Linear Models, Mathematical Finance in Discrete Time

Extracurricular Activities

  • Maths society president: Increased membership by 115% over 3 semesters as president
  • Running: Competed in 2 marathons, finishing in the top 20% in both

2. Include examples and numbers where possible

When you add extracurricular activities in your CV, don’t just list them. Instead, add valuable information that shows employers how your extracurriculars prove you’d perform well in their open role. Such information includes:

  • specific examples of your responsibilities and achievements
  • hard numbers that show employers the scale of your accomplishments

Here are two examples of extracurriculars listed on a CV. The first example uses examples and data that help the employer see what the applicant is capable of doing for them. The second example is just a list of activities that doesn’t give the employer any useful information about the applicant:

Descriptive extracurricular activities with hard numbers

  • Volunteering: Raised £3,500 during a fundraising campaign for CARE International
  • Drama club: Collaborated with other club members to write and perform 3 plays
  • Writing poetry: Published 4 poems in various university publications

Lacklustre extracurricular activities without description

Extracurricular activities: Volunteering, drama club, writing poetry

Extracurricular activities in CV template

To make putting extracurricular activities in your CV especially easy, we made this CV template with slots for your extracurriculars throughout:

Extracurricular activities in a CV template that features subtle grey highlights under headers and a cluster of triangles in various shades of gray in the bottom-right corner.

Download Free CV Template (MS Word)

Extracurricular activities in CV template (copy & paste)

Your Name
Position Title

Phone: 07123 456 789 Address: 38 Queens Road, London, NW14 9EG Email: your.name@gmail.com LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/your-name

Personal Statement

Driven [student / recent graduate] with a degree in [area of study] and [job-relevant skills] honed through [extracurricular activity]. Achieved [mention a relevant extracurricular achievement here] as a [extracurricular role]. Excited to put my talents to work to help achieve [Company’s Name]’s goals and take on more responsibility as soon as possible.

Education

University, Location | Start Date – End Date

Degree Name (mention your degree classification for an honours degree)
Key modules: List your key or job-relevant modules here

Secondary School, Location | Start Date – End Date

A-Levels: List any A-Levels you achieved while in secondary school or college
GCSEs: Include all GCSEs you achieved A*–C (or 9–4) in, particularly English, Maths, and IT

Extracurricular Activities

Extracurricular Activity/Role Title
University/Organisation Name / Location / Start Date – End Date (or Present)

  • Include a bulleted list of your extracurricular duties and accomplishments
  • Add hard numbers to your bullet points to better illustrate your extracurricular activities

Extracurricular Activity/Role Title
University/Organisation Name / Location / Start Date – End Date (or Present)

  • List relevant accomplishments from another extracurricular activity
  • If you no longer participate in this activity, use past tense verbs to describe your experience

Key Skills

  • List your relevant skills and certifications
  • Include a mix of technical skills and soft skills
  • Be specific (for instance, state the names of software and tools you can use)

Hobbies & Interests

  • List some of your relevant or interesting hobbies (but don’t repeat any you listed in your extracurricular activities section)
  • For example, mention your love of baking or solving crossword puzzles here

Answers to 3 FAQs related to CV extracurricular activities

To eliminate all doubts you may have about putting extracurricular activities in your CV, here are answers to three common questions about doing so:

1. Do hobbies count as extracurricular activities on a CV?

Yes, hobbies count as extracurricular activities on a CV. But only include hobbies that are related to the job you’re applying for.

And if you list hobbies in an extracurricular activities section, don’t repeat them in a hobbies and interests section. If you need to fill space on your CV, just write a sentence or two describing each activity.

2. Do employers care about hobbies on a CV?

Yes, employers care about hobbies on a CV. What you do in your free time gives employers a clearer picture of what type of person you are and how you’d fit into their work environment.

Also, if you can show that you pursue interests related to the type of work you do, employers will be impressed by your dedication.

3. How do you write about sports achievements on a CV?

The best way to write about your sports achievements on your CV is to focus on information related to the job you want.

For example, if the job advert you’re responding to notes that the employer is seeking someone who values teamwork, write about how you worked with your teammates to achieve a common goal, rather than emphasising your personal statistics.

Here are some good examples of how to write about sports achievements on your CV:

Elected football team captain thanks to off-the-field teambuilding efforts that improved our morale and led to a first-place finish
Stepped up after our star player was injured, leading the team to victory in a national cricket tournament with a batting average of 50.8 runs per match

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