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I've done a ton of digging but have been unable to find a solution to this problem.

Specifically, I am creating a resume using the AltaCV class and multi column packages together. The goal is align two sections of the resume side by side if they are small sections such as skills, and hobbies. This is to make sure that I use all my available real estate.

Anyways, here is some example code for two sections that I want to make work side by side

\begin{fullwidth}
\cvsection{Software \& Programming}

\begin{multicols}{2}
    {
    \begin{itemize}[label={}]
        \item \textit{\large{Programming}}
            \begin{itemize}
                \item MATLAB (1 year), Python (0.5 years), \LaTeX~(0.5 years)
            \end{itemize}
        \item
        \item \textit{\large{Software}}
            \begin{itemize}
                \item AutoCAD (3 years), NX10 (0.5 year), Excel (0.5 years)
            \end{itemize}
    \end{itemize}
    }
    {
    \cvsection{Hobbies \& Interests}
    \begin{itemize}
        \item Drawing \textit{2017-Current}
        \item Poetry \& writing \textit{2016-Current}
        \item Machine Learning \textit{Sep 2018 - Current}
        \item Custom PC building  \textit{2012-Current}
    \end{itemize}
    }
\end{multicols}
\end{fullwidth}

What it ends up looking like

As you can tell the two sides are not aligned as I wish they were. In other sections I make this work by carefully balancing both sides of the columns so that they align but this is very annoying and I feel defeats the original purpose of using Latex to begin with.

Are there any ways to create two enviornments or blocks of text and code and then put them side by side as though they were figures?

1

Using codes from your example, maybe you can try this

\begin{fullwidth}
\begin{multicols}{2}
    \cvsection{Software \& Programming}
    \begin{itemize}[label={}]
        \item \textit{\large{Programming}}
            \begin{itemize}
                \item MATLAB (1 year), Python (0.5 years), \LaTeX~(0.5 years)
            \end{itemize}
        \item
        \item \textit{\large{Software}}
            \begin{itemize}
                \item AutoCAD (3 years), NX10 (0.5 year), Excel (0.5 years)
            \end{itemize}
    \end{itemize}
    \columnbreak
    \cvsection{Hobbies \& Interests}
    \begin{itemize}
        \item Drawing \textit{2017-Current}
        \item Poetry \& writing \textit{2016-Current}
        \item Machine Learning \textit{Sep 2018 - Current}
        \item Custom PC building  \textit{2012-Current}
    \end{itemize}
\end{multicols}
\end{fullwidth}

What have changed:

  1. Move both \cvsection inside multicols environment.
  2. Delete extra curly braces around itemize environment.
  3. Use \columnbreak to manually breaking columns.

Are there any ways to create two enviornments or blocks of text and code and then put them side by side as though they were figures?

Yes, you can use, for example, minipage environment to get a side-by-side effect. In the following example, the vertical space above and below the minipage is manually controlled.

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{lipsum}
\begin{document}

full width text above the side-by-side part
\smallskip 

\noindent
\begin{minipage}[t]{0.48\linewidth}
\lipsum[1]
\end{minipage}%
\hfill
\begin{minipage}[t]{0.48\linewidth}
\lipsum[2]
\end{minipage}

\smallskip 
full width text below the side-by-side part

\end{document}

side-by-side effect with minipage


By the way, providing a MWE (minimum working example) is a better behavior than just providing snips of codes.

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