blank notepad for annotations with application portfolio backgroundCrafting an effective cover letter

The cover letter you include with your resume is incredibly important—it’s your opportunity to make a strong case for yourself and demonstrate your super powers! Your cover letter is where you make your pitch—summarize the skills and experience that make you perfect for the job, and express your passion for the field and interest in the company.

Consider these guidelines as you start crafting your cover letter:

Customize your cover letter
Make sure you customize your cover letter for the position you’re applying for. If the name of the hiring manager has been provided to you or is in the job posting, address the letter or email to that person to add a more personal touch.

Introduce yourself
Provide a one-paragraph introduction that includes the following information:
• A brief introduction to you (i.e. your major, current job, etc.)
• The specific position you are interested in
• Why you are qualified for this position

Provide evidence that shows you’re a great fit
Craft one to three paragraphs in the body section that emphasizes:
• Why you are interested in the position
• How your academic background and experiences make you a qualified candidate for the position
• Specific, relevant achievements or qualifications

Try not to repeat the same information the reader will find in your resume. And, be sure to refer the reader to the enclosed or attached resume or application, which should summarize your qualifications, training and experience.

Show some passion!
• Indicate your desire for a personal interview.
• Repeat your phone number and email in the letter.
• Close your letter with a statement or question that will encourage a response. For example, you might say that you will be in the city where the organization is located on a certain date and would like to set up an interview. And, don’t forget to thank the reader for taking time to consider you for the position.