“The difference between your resume and cover letter is that your resume should provide the reader with a better understanding of who you are. Your cover letter should connect the dots for the reader and show how your previous experiences apply to the job for which you are applying.” – Temple University, Career Center
Writing an Effective Cover Letter
- First Paragraph
- Why are you writing the letter? State your interest in the position and how you found the job.
- State the 2-3 job responsibilities or qualities you chose from the job description that distinguish your candidacy and meet the needs of the employer.
- Be specific – avoid general statements.
- Second Paragraph
- Provide evidence that supports the 2-3 job responsibilities you listed above.
- Explain your experiences and how they relate to the responsibilities of the position you are applying for.
- Connect your experiences to the qualifications of the position you are applying for.
- Final Paragraph
- Let the reader know you would like to discuss your qualifications in more detail through an interview. Provide your contact information again so it is accessible.
- Refer to your resume and other requested materials.
- Thank the reader for his/her time and consideration.
Notes about the Cover Letter
- A separate cover letter must be written for each position.
- Keep the cover letter to one page.
- DO YOUR RESEARCH – Read the job description.
- From the job description, select 2-3 key responsibilities or qualifications that you possess.
Sample Cover Letter