# vspace has no effect in parcolumns

I have following template for my resume wherein I am trying to get rid of the space between two education fields (space between two university entries, this causes my resume to go to second page). The code that I use is as belows:

\documentclass[a4paper,20pt]{article}

\usepackage[total={6.5in,8.75in}, top=1.2in, left=0.9in]{geometry}
\usepackage{fancyhdr}
\usepackage{hyperref}
\usepackage{parcolumns}

\pagestyle{fancy}
% Remove page numbers
\fancyfoot{}

\fontsize{20.74pt}{24pt}\selectfont{}%
Name\\%
\fontsize{8pt}{9.6pt}\selectfont{}%
Address, Phone Number, etc.; %
}

\begin{document}
\begin{parcolumns}[nofirstindent, colwidths={1=.15\linewidth}]{2}
\colchunk[1]{%
EDUCATION\\*
\\*
\\*
\\*
}
\colchunk[2]{%
\textbf{University of XXX, XXX}\hfill 2011 - 2013 (Expected)\\*
Master of Science, Computer Science, 4.0/4.0\\*
\\*
\textbf{University of YYY, YYY}\hfill 2005 - 2009\\*
Bachelor of Technology, Computer Science, 10.0/10.0
}
\end{parcolumns}
\end{document}


which produces following pdf:

I tried putting in \vspace{<some-num>mm} between two university entries so as to reduce the gap, but \vspace has no effect.

Can somebody help me with this?

Thanks!

-
Just something that confuses me: If you're using parcolumns, why pad out the left side with \\*'s? The package is designed to handle that automatically. –  rdhs Apr 7 '12 at 4:33
@rdhs: parcolumns vertically centers the left column w.r.t right one where as I want the left column to top aligned. I am not sure why by default parcolumns does not top align the left column instead of center aligning it. That seems to be the reasonable default logic. –  abhinavkulkarni Apr 9 '12 at 6:13

There are better ways of obtaining your output. However, I assume you already have a setup in place, and changing it now might be a moot point. As such, consider using \\*[<len>] to have a fixed length <len> vertical skip between entries:

\documentclass[a4paper]{article}

\usepackage[total={6.5in,8.75in}, top=1.2in, left=0.9in]{geometry}% http://ctan.org/pkg/geometry
\usepackage{fancyhdr}% http://ctan.org/pkg/fancyhdr
\usepackage{hyperref}% http://ctan.org/pkg/hyperref
\usepackage{parcolumns}% http://ctan.org/pkg/parcolumns

\pagestyle{fancy}
% Remove page numbers
\fancyfoot{}

\fontsize{20.74pt}{24pt}\selectfont{}%
Name\\%
\fontsize{8pt}{9.6pt}\selectfont{}%
Address, Phone Number, etc.; %
}

\begin{document}
\begin{parcolumns}[nofirstindent, colwidths={1=.15\linewidth}]{2}
\colchunk[1]{%
EDUCATION\\*
\\*[.5\baselineskip]
\\*
}
\colchunk[2]{%
\textbf{University of XXX, XXX}\hfill 2011 - 2013 (Expected)\\*
Master of Science, Computer Science, 4.0/4.0\\*[.5\baselineskip]
\textbf{University of YYY, YYY}\hfill 2005 - 2009\\*
Bachelor of Technology, Computer Science, 10.0/10.0
}
\end{parcolumns}
\end{document}


In the above example, the skip between items is given by .5\baselineskip (half a line skip). Modify this to suit your preference.

-
Hi Werner, thanks for the answer. Can you please explain why your answer is better than the one suggested by S. Murugan. I guess both of the approaches are doing more or less the same thing, right? Is it a matter of better programming practice or something? –  abhinavkulkarni Apr 7 '12 at 3:32
@abhinavkulkarni: Since \\  already allows for a length-specification, it seems obvious to use it rather than inserting an negative \vspace. –  Werner Apr 7 '12 at 6:22

Check this:

\documentclass[a4paper,20pt]{article}

\usepackage[total={6.5in,8.75in}, top=1.2in, left=0.9in]{geometry}
\usepackage{fancyhdr}
\usepackage{hyperref}
\usepackage{parcolumns}

\pagestyle{fancy}
% Remove page numbers
\fancyfoot{}

\fontsize{20.74pt}{24pt}\selectfont{}%
Name\\%
\fontsize{8pt}{9.6pt}\selectfont{}%
Address, Phone Number, etc.; %
}

\begin{document}
\begin{parcolumns}[nofirstindent, colwidths={1=.15\linewidth}]{2}
\colchunk[1]{%
EDUCATION\vspace*{6pt}\\*
\\*
\\*
}
\colchunk[2]{%
\textbf{University of XXX, XXX}\hfill 2011 - 2013 (Expected)\\*
Master of Science, Computer Science, 4.0/4.0\vspace*{-6pt}\\*
\\*
\textbf{University of YYY, YYY}\hfill 2005 - 2009\\*
Bachelor of Technology, Computer Science, 10.0/10.0
}
\end{parcolumns}
\end{document}

-
Thanks. Can you explain why this happens? Why does /vspace{10pt} not work while /vspace*{-6pt} works? –  abhinavkulkarni Apr 7 '12 at 2:14