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Unformatted text preview: Writing a Cover Letter It should answer the question Why should I hire you? It should grab the employer's attention and point out why you, above all other applicants, should be contacted for a personal interview. YOUR ADDRESS (Do not put your name here) TODAY'S DATE Dr. EMPLOYER'S NAME (If you don't have one, find one!) TITLE COMPANY'S NAME ADDRESS DEAR Dr. EMPLOYER: FIRST PARAGRAPH: This is the "why I'm writing to you" paragraph which immediately tells the employer the position you want to be considered for. This is short usually 23 sentences. Points to cover: Why you are writing and which position you are applying for. How you heard about the position is irrelevant unless it is a mutual contact or recruiting program. Do not write, "I learned of this opportunity through the Career Services Office." Show from your research why you are interested in this position or organization. The goal is to make a connection do this Briefly and Specifically or leave it out; broadly sweeping statements will not work. SECOND PARAGRAPH: This is the "why I'm qualified" paragraph. Highlight some of your most relevant experiences and qualities as they relate to the position for which you are applying. Choose 23 points you want to make about Specific experiences/accomplishments or about general qualities you have exhibited, and provide Specific examples to support those points. This paragraph will change according to the job/employer for which you are applying. This is usually the longest paragraph of the letter. You may break this paragraph into two if it looks too lengthy or if your points work best in separate paragraphs. Points to ponder: The first sentence should be a hardhitting opener. It is a quick introduction, which is accomplishment oriented and directed at the skills and qualifications needed for the position The body of the paragraph should provide evidence to back up what you've just claimed. Cite specific jobs/internships/activities/projects and accomplishments associated with those experiences. Use your resume to come up with some specifics, but NEVER reiterate passages from your resume word for word. Discuss relevant facts to the job. Strong examples are important! The final sentence should reiterate your interest in the position. It's a good idea to mention the position title and company name to bring the reader back to the specific job in question. FINAL PARAGRAPH: This is a short 24 sentences paragraph. You should refer to the enclosed resume, request an interview and let the reader know what will happen next (Contact them within specific period of time unless it is a recruiting program). It is vital that you thank the reader for his/her time and consideration. Sincerely, Your Signature
Your Name Tips to Make Your Letter Professional Research the company and the specifics about the position so you can tailor your letter to the needs of the organization. Avoid using too many sentences that start with "I" or writing in the passive voice (ex. "This experience enabled me to..." or "Through my internship, I was responsible for..."); instead, make yourself the subject of each sentence and use active descriptions (ex., "In this internship, I demonstrated sound judgment and problemsolving skills on a daily basis."). Do not use contractions (I'd, didn't, it's). Spelling, grammar, or punctuation mistakes are out of the question! Cover letters are a reflection of your writing skills, so make each cover letter an example of your best work. Be sure to sign your letters. (Black ink is suggested) Keep your letter short and simple. This is not the time to tell your whole life's story. Use good quality paper that matches your resume paper and envelopes. Department of Chemistry Indiana University 800 E. Kirkwood Ave. Bloomington, Indiana 47405 Dr. Felicity Stark PharmaCare 1604 E. 17th Ave. Denver , Colorado 801281621 March 1, 2011 Dear Dr. Stark: With a background in chemistry and an interest in medical devices and sales, I looking forward to new challenges and bringing my chemical expertise to pharmaceutical sales at PharmaCare. I learned about the Pharmaceutical Sales Representative position in your Denver office while at the Health Fair on our campus where I met a representative from PharmaCare, Dr. Dan Winslet. I have a strong desire change careers to the medical health field in addition to changing locales and move west. I believe my qualifications and past experience in chemistry, industry, government and academia will be a strong asset to your company. Briefly, my relevant qualifications include: More than two years of industrial experience in pharmaceutical industry control department where I consistently met or exceeded division goals. One year of experience as a statecertified asbestos inspector with Occupational Health & Safety Administration of Michigan (MIOSHA) for Michigan State schools. Six years of experience working as a pharmacy technician on medical mission trips to third world countries and at the community clinic, Volunteers in Medicine (VIM). Veterinary assistant to routine surgeries on large cats at Exotic Feline Rescue Center; experienced in surgical procedures. A Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry, English and History, from Kalamazoo College; Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry , with minor in organic, from Wayne State University; two years postdoctoral experience, University of Iowa and University of Chicago, Polymer Chemistry. Additional experiences are listed within the enclosed resume. In an effort to discuss this matter further, I will be calling your office with the next week to see if we might set up a time to meet or talk by phone. If you have any questions, I can be reached at (812)8553972 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for your consideration. I look forward to hearing from you. Sincerely, Cathrine Reck
Enclosures: CV Your Street Address Your City, state, zip Person's Name Company Name Company Address City, State, Zip Date Dear (Mr./ Ms./ Dr. Person's Name): Several items mentioned in your advertisement for a Research Assistant in the (name of publication) on (date) suggest you may be searching for someone with my background. In fact, I was excited to see how closely my qualifications matched your requirements: Your Requirements Background in Biochemistry Lab experience Ability to write reports Basic statistical knowledge My Qualifications Graduated with a BS in Biochemistry, minor in Spanish Two years of research experience in organic synthesis lab, resulting in one publication Copious lab courses with writing experience in science format Course work in Elementary Statistics My Chemistry coursework has focused in Organic Chemistry as highlighted by my Senior Thesis and publication in J. Org. Chem. in my resume. This academic background has also prepared me for independent laboratory research. This B.S. curriculum has allowed me to take multiple Biology and Chemistry classes which have enabled me to improve my problemsolving as well as my analytical abilities. As a result of my rewarding research since 2008 and my academic coursework, I am confident that I could make a strong contribution to your division at Eli Lilly. Thank you for your consideration of my credentials. I will contact your office in the next ten days to see if you require any additional information regarding my qualifications. Sincerely, Your Signature
Your Name Enclosures: resume Date Your Street Address Your City, state, zip Person's Name Company Name Company Address City, State, Zip Date Dear (Mr./ Ms./ Dr. Person's Name): Please accept my resume for the research technician position at Baxter, or any other position that would be suitable for me. I am confident that my background and skills in research techniques will prove to be an effective match for your qualifications. In May 2011, I will graduate with a B.S. in Biochemistry and a minor in Biology and through my coursework I have had a great deal of laboratory experience. In the lab, I have performed a wide variety of chemical synthesis, utilized a large array of spectroscopic equipment and most recently I have used atomic absorption to analyze heavy metals in water samples. In a new service learning course, I have conducted outdoor water testing to assess water quality for the city of Bloomington. While working for Dr. Williams, I successfully applied my research skills and worked closely with the graduate students to learn as much chemistry beyond my undergraduate degree as possible. I supported my research by assisting in writing publications and contributing towards two graduate student's theses, recording and analyzing massive amounts of data. These experiences have provided me the opportunity to work closely with a team of researchers, and helped me to understand the importance of good lab practices. My research experiences have been positive ones due in part to my strong interpersonal skills. I work well in teams, am reliable and organized, and enthusiastic to learn. I am not discouraged by challenging situations, and I am sure that I will carry over the same enthusiasm and skill in doing research in your company. Thank you for your consideration. I look forward to hearing from you shortly. Sincerely, Your Signature Your Typed Name Enclosures: resume ...
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- Spring '11