A cover letter is an important part of your communication with an employer in your process of searching for a job or an internship.
While the resume provides an overview of your background, the cover letter gives you the opportunity to highlight those aspects of your background that are most relevant to the position you are seeking.
A good cover letter would encourage the employer to learn more about you by reading your resume and meeting with you for an interview. It would also present the employer with a sample of your writing skills.
- To introduce yourself to prospective employers, indicate your interest in the company and the position, share your qualifications, and state how you might benefit their business.
- To demonstrate the real you to the reader by demonstrating personality, characteristics, and strengths.
- To set your resume apart from the competition.
- It is vital in case you are sending your resume to a cold contact (i.e. an unfamiliar employer that has no advertised job openings).
- Some employers ask for it as part of the application.
You just cannot afford to settle for a less than perfect presentation of your credentials. This section not only outlines the basic format you should follow when writing cover letters but also shows you how to put the finishing touches on a top-notch product.
Address your cover letter to the hiring manager. If the name is not available, then try to research online or call to gather that information
Reflect genuine interest in the position you are applying for
Casually address the employer
Be honest and use actual examples to demonstrate your skills and experiences. Risk being perceived as sloppy. It shows that you are either lacking attention to detail or careless
Make connections between your experience and the position
Speak negatively of your employment situation or your life in general
Focus on what you can do for the prospective employer than about what the company can do for you
Use a generic cover letter
Verify the accuracy of any company information that you mention in your letter
Repeat what is in your resume (your cover letter should complement the resume)
Close your cover letter with a call to action (what you will do next/how you will follow up)
Proofread before sending your letter to avoid errors
Always keep a copy of all business correspondence for future reference
In response to a specific announcement, where a cover letter is requested as part of the application documents. If written well, it increases the chance for an interview appointment.
To potential employers along with the résumé to hunt for possible vacancies. Addressed to the head of the department, in which you are seeking employment.
Thank You Letter
After an opportunity or information interview to express appreciation for time taken and remind the interviewer of your qualifications and reiterate intent in the sought after position. To be sent preferably after 24 hours of the interview to all interviewers.
To inquire about your status if the employer does not respond within the agreed time. It is recommended to include a copy of the résumé as a reminder. The date and location of the interview should be indicated.
To express your appreciation for being selected for the position and confirm your understanding of the job offer and when you will report to work.
Once you accept a job offer, notifying all other employers to whom you have previously applied, requesting to withdraw your employment application.
When rejecting a job offer, in which you tactfully and promptly express your appreciation for the employer’s interest in hiring you for the position, explaining that you have decided not to accept the offer after thoughtful consideration.
In case you are required to decide on a job offer by a specific date that you cannot meet, in which you request to postpone your response date to the employer. Make sure to indicate the timeframe within which you will respond to the employer.
To resign from your current position. The letter is written in a positive tone and submitted to your supervisor giving sufficient notice as stated in your employment contract. A resignation letter is your official notice that formally indicates the date of termination of your employment with the company.
To a professional contact requesting an information interview appointment, not for generating a job interview.
Application to Graduate School
When applying to graduate school, address to the desired university expressing your interest in a specific graduate program. Highlight your strongest qualifications and areas of interest and clarify the program’s contribution towards your career goal.
Meet a Career Advisor
Our career advisors are available to meet with you individually. However, it is up to you to make majordecisions, act on your decisions and make your career plan a reality. Confidentiality of personal information, assessment outcomes, and credentials is guaranteed. You can make use of this service as early as your freshman year.
You can schedule an advising appointment on your CareerWEB account | Counseling Appointment Section.
Attend a Workshop
The Career Center offers Cover Letter Workshop. For details about the workshops, refer to CareerWEB | Events Section.