I am on the academic job market in America in the social sciences. I am applying to R1/R2s, with a few liberal arts colleges sprinkled in.

I’ve heard from a few people that mentioning undergrad experiences are a big no-no in both the CV and application cover letter. Specifically, I’ve heard that mentioning undergrad experiences makes it look like you have not done enough in grad school and need to pad your resume/cover letter AND that search committees don’t actually care about what happened to you in undergrad.

My undergrad degree was from a top school in my field (higher ranked than my graduate school) and I wanted to briefly mention what inspired me to enter this field. Is this a waste of space? Or worse, will I look amateurish?

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