I struggled with poor grades early in college and moved home after two years. I took a year off before completing my Associate's at community college in 1.5 years, and then transferred to a state school for the remaining two years and completed my Bachelor's.

I didn't get a degree from Ohio State, and I still ended up completing 3.5 years of school after that, so I question if this should be on my resume. However, it was a great life experience and I did take some unique and exciting courses there, so it didn't leave me entirely empty.

Here are the basics of education on my current resume:

University of Massachusetts: 2011 - 2013
- Degree: Bachelor of Businses

Holyoke Community College: 2010 - 2011
- Degree: Associate of Business

Ohio State University: 2006 - 2008

Here is how I currently show my educational history:

enter image description here

If this doesn't belong here, please close or move it--I'm not sure where else I should ask a question like this.

Edit: updated with a screenshot of the educational history that is actually on my resume. I want to clarify that the words and content in the striked out lines above is not verbatim what is in my resume.

  • 6
    Shouldn't it be The Ohio State University? :P Feb 9, 2017 at 14:50
  • 2
    @AndrewBrooke I did think about it, but figured I ought to minimize any pretentious tone
    – Trevor D
    Feb 9, 2017 at 14:54
  • 2
    I would also make sure you spell "Business" correctly both times.. ;)
    – user812786
    Feb 9, 2017 at 14:58
  • 2
    If you leave it on your resume, remove the "- Degree: none" line. That's unnecessarily negative. Just omit it.
    – nvoigt
    Feb 9, 2017 at 14:59
  • @JoeStrazzere Correct, these are not the actual degrees. I threw this on to highlight the point I am trying to make about the schools from which I have a degree or not. I also have "business" spelled correctly on my actual resume. Post has been updated to reflect what is actually on my resume.
    – Trevor D
    Feb 9, 2017 at 21:07

2 Answers 2


Should I keep my first try at college on my resume?


There is no requirement to include all of your schooling on your resume. Since your Ohio State years don't add to your appeal as an employee (and may actually be viewed negatively), you should omit them.

The fact that you attained degrees after your other education is all that a potential employer will care about.

If somehow you are asked about completing your Associates in only 1.5 years, you may need to open up about your prior courses, since you don't want to lie about it. But I doubt that will happen.

  • 1
    I also have incomplete education at an old uni and don't put it on the CV, it's however an interesting talking point if the topic is brought up during an interview. So don't be afraid to talk about it, but don't feel obligated to include it on your CV if you're running out of space
    – Draken
    Feb 9, 2017 at 15:54

If you have a work history and that puts a hole in your work history then include it.

If you used credits from Ohio State University towards either of the other degrees than you should include it.

  • 4
    I agree with the first point, but I think the second can be left to OP's discretion. I would leave it out if you only used the OSU classes for gen-eds or electives, but leave if you felt it contributed significantly towards your degree (e.g. you anticipate talking about "in my class at Ohio State..." in an interview).
    – user812786
    Feb 9, 2017 at 16:55
  • @whrrgarbl What if the ask for transcripts and the transcript shows carry credits you did not list?
    – paparazzo
    Feb 9, 2017 at 16:57
  • My college listed them in the transcript as transfer credits from XX. I don't think it's very common for jobs to ask for transcripts, anyways. I earned college credits from two colleges during high school, and even grad schools only asked for the transcript from my alma mater. If they do ask, OP could just mention they took some classes there before the degree.
    – user812786
    Feb 9, 2017 at 17:37
  • @whrrgarbl I believe my words were "What if"
    – paparazzo
    Feb 9, 2017 at 17:43
  • 1
    Yes, my first and last sentences address that.
    – user812786
    Feb 9, 2017 at 18:04

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .