The Purpose of a Cover Letter:

  • Goes hand and hand with a resume.
  • A wonderful resume might never be read if the cover letter doesn't have the reader wanting more.
  • Consider the cover letter as a first impression.
  • The cover letter does not repeat the resume; instead, it provides additional information and highlights your strengths.
  • Show that you have done your research by typing the specific position and organization in which you are applying.


  • Use standard paper 8 1/2 x 11, the same paper as your resume, with matching envelope and letterhead.
  • Stick to one page.
  • Check and re-check spelling, grammar, and typographical errors.
  • Address your letter to a specific person with title.
  • Tailor your letter to the specific position you are applying for.

Paragraph 1:

  • State the reason for the letter.
  • Name the specific position you are applying for.
  • Indicate how you learned of the opening.
  • State why you are interested in the position and organization.

Paragraph 2 and Possibly 3:

  • Indicate and briefly illustrate your academic background and other experience.
  • Mention relevant skills you have through volunteer position, internships, part-time jobs, etc.
  • Explain what you can bring to the company.

Final Paragraph:

  • Explain your interest in discussing the position further.
  • Repeat your contact information, telephone number, e-mail, address.
  • Offer to produce additional information if desired.
  • Don't forget to sign the letter.