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1 Presented by Clark University Career Services
Cover Letters Presented by Clark University Career Services

2 What is a Cover Letter? An effective cover letter:
inspires an employer to read your resume. illustrates your knowledge of the organization. emphasizes how your experience meets the employer’s needs. demonstrates communication skills, attention to detail, and enthusiasm. does NOT restate your resume, but provides examples of your skills and qualifications for the position.

3 Cover Letter Basics Research the organization.
You will be able to write an effective cover letter after researching the organization and determine why you want to work there. Write a targeted letter to each organization address it directly to the appropriate person using his/her title. If no name is given, call the organization to acquire the name of the Director of Human Resources or the Hiring Manager. Use action-oriented words similar to those in your resume to emphasize accomplishments. include key words and specific skills the employer listed in the position description. Avoid starting sentences with “I” or “My” as this can be misinterpreted as self-centeredness.

4 Format Your Street Address City, State Zip Code Date of Writing
Specific Name (Mr. John Doe) Specific Title (Director, Human Resources) Company/Organization Street Address Dear Mr. or Ms. ________: (never use “To Whom it May Concern"; "Sir or Madam”)

5 Opening Paragraph Specifically state which position you are applying for. “Please consider me as a candidate for the Assistant Editor position advertised in the April 14th edition of The Boston Globe.” Mention how you learned of the organization and include any contacts within the organization. “Through Clark University Career Services’ office, I learned of this position. I can offer The Boston Globe: strong communication, time management, and problem solving skills as well as experience editing weekly publications.”

6 Middle Paragraph(s) Explain why it is reasonable that you are pursuing the opportunity by relating pertinent information about your background. Two paragraphs may be used if you have enough relevant experience to highlight. “Currently I am completing my B.A. in English at Clark University. My academic coursework includes a concentration in Women's Studies as well as several creative writing courses. As my resumé indicates, I have completed internships in both publishing and journalism. I am confident that I possess the interpersonal, organizational, and technical skills required of this position.” “As a full-time student I effectively balanced my coursework, a part-time work-study job, and the duties of a Resident Assistant. I have the proven ability to juggle multiple tasks, manage my time, and maintain enthusiasm for any project I take on.”

7 Closing Paragraph Respectfully request an opportunity to discuss your qualifications further. “I welcome the opportunity to meet with you to discuss how my qualifications will contribute to the Assistant Editor position.” Indicate when you will be available and how you can be reached. “Please contact me at …” Thank the employer for their time and consideration. “Thank you for considering me for this position.”

8 Cover Letters in 60 Seconds

9 For Additional Help… Consult with the Clark University Career Services Staff. To set up an appointment, contact us at: (508)

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