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How To Write A College Student Cover Letter (With Examples)

  • Cover Letter Examples
  • Best Cover Letters
  • Cover Letter For Internship
  • General Cover Letter Templates
  • Career Change Cover Letter
  • Promotion Cover Letter
  • College Student Cover Letter
  • Entry Level Cover Letter
  • Legal Cover Letter
  • Creative Cover Letter
  • Cover Letter For Government Job
  • Cover Letter With No Experience
  • Short Cover Letter Examples
  • How To Send An Email Cover Letter
  • How To Write A Cover Letter For A Job With No Experience In That Field

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Writing a cover letter can be difficult, especially if you’re a college student who may not have written one in the past. An excellent cover letter can help convince a hiring manager that you are the best person for the job. This is why you should know how to write a college student cover letter.

If you’re a college student who needs to write the best cover letter, stick around. In this article, we’ll go over how to write a college cover letter, provide some student cover letter examples, and give you some tips to keep in mind when writing your letter.

Key Takeaways

Your cover letter should include an achievement-driven introduction, your key skills and qualifications, and a call to action.

Research the company you’re applying to so you can tailor your cover letter to them and follow any guidelines they lay out.

Include your academic achievements, extracurricular activities, honors, and soft skills in your cover letter.

How to Write a College Student Cover Letter

How to write a cover letter as a college student

What to include in your cover letter, cover letter examples for college students, 7 tips for writing your college student cover letter, how to write a college student cover letter faq.

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When writing a cover letter as a college student, you should start by greeting the recipient of the letter by name and give an achievement-driven introduction. The formatting for both a resume and a cover letter is quite similar. Here is an overview of how to lay out your letter:

Add your contact information in a header. At the top of your letter, you want to list out your contact information . This should include your name, phone number, and email address. Including your home address is also an option.

Maria Smith 215-888-5252 [email protected] 16 West Street New York, NY , 10001 9/1/2020

Add the company’s contact information. Up next you should add the contact details for the company . You should put the hiring manager’s name, company address, and phone number. Typically, this information can be found within the job posting or by doing some digging on the website.

Tim Cook Apple, Inc. One Apple Park Way Cupertino, CA 95014

Include a greeting. Your salutation should be tailored to the hiring manager, i.e. “Dear Mr. Smith”. You want to avoid saying phrases such as “To whom it may concern” which are not as personal. If you cannot find the correct hiring manager to address the letter to , it is also acceptable to use “Dear Hiring Manager” as your greeting.

Dear Mr. Cook ,

Give an achievement-driven introduction. The introduction to your cover letter should be a way for the recruiter to get to know you right away. Discuss how your education has made you a strong candidate and what you have learned. Lead with a special accomplishment that relates to the position that you are applying for. This gives the hiring manager an immediate sense of who you are and is a great segue into the next component of your letter.

My name is Maria Smith and I’m pleased to submit my application for Marketing Research Intern at Apple, Inc. I was thrilled to read this job description on Indeed and feel as though my education and skills are a perfect fit for this exciting team.

Cover key skills and why you fit the job. With your introduction setting the tone, the next section of your letter should dive deeper into your relevant qualifications. As a college student this is where you can describe experiences or organizations that you were involved in that helped you to acquire certain skills. These experiences and transferable skills should align with some of the key duties that were outlined in the description of the job. Show your passion and why you want the role.

This area of your cover letter should speak directly to why you want to work for the organization. You should express enthusiasm and a knowledge of the company. A tip is to research any notable accomplishments of the company, such as philanthropic work that you would also be interested in. Let the employer know that your personal values and goals align with those of the company.

As a senior at Penn State University in the Marketing department planning to graduate in May with a 3.6 GPA, I have accumulated a broad range of skills in market research and spent over 150 hours compiling reports of various findings on different subjects. I recently conducted a significant focus group for the university, where we gathered feedback regarding the perception and satisfaction of campus life.

Provide a call-to-action (CTA). One of the first rules of advertising is to always have a call to action, and when marketing yourself to a prospective employer the same rule applies. Be direct in that you know you are a good fit and that you would like to move forward. You can request a follow-up to further discuss your credentials and learn more about the role. This will be the conclusion paragraph of your letter, tying everything mentioned earlier together.

As an individual who fights for inclusion and diversity, I can say that not only do your values align with my own personal ones, but I feel as though I could make a significant difference through the value of research on this team if given the opportunity. Enclosed, please find my resume with further details about my education and previous experience. Thank you for the opportunity to apply for this exciting new position and I look forward to hearing from you soon. Please reach me by email at [email protected] or via phone at 215-888-5252.

Give your best regards and add your name. End your cover letter with a farewell statement such as “Best regards” or “Sincerely” followed by your first and last name underneath.

Best regards, Maria Smith

When writing your cover letter as a college student, you should include your academic achievements, any extracurricular activities, or your high GPA. Here is a more detailed list of the things to include in your cover letter:

Academic achievements. If your senior project earned the award for the best in your graduating class, say so. If you worked on a project that was successfully implemented in the real world, talk about that too.

Extracurricular activities. Talking about the clubs you were a part of (or led), the volunteer work you did, or the other activities you participated in can help give hiring managers a better idea of all that you bring to the table.

Honors or high GPA. If you graduated with honors or with a GPA higher than 3.5, mention that in your cover letter. While grades certainly aren’t everything when it comes to getting a job, if you have good ones, they’re worth mentioning.

Soft skills. Being a college student requires many of the same skills that being an employee does, especially when it comes to soft skills like communication, time management, and problem-solving. Highlight these in your cover letter by giving examples of how you’ve used them.

Student cover letter example

John Brown 123 Brook Ln. Towne, MD 123-456-7890 [email protected] 08/24/2020 Ashley Smith Senior Analyst 456 Technology Way Landon, MD Dear Ms. Smith, As a senior sports management student at Roothers State College, I was excited to see your posting for equipment interns. Within my degree program, I have been able to gain experience working with athletes across football, basketball, and baseball. I have been one of only four students to successfully complete rotations in all three sports in four semesters. I have maintained a 3.8 cumulative GPA throughout my academic career, while also being active in several campus recreational leagues. I have found that participating in sports gives operations staff a unique perspective when it comes to working with athletes. This has also helped me to interact with diverse groups of people and maintain a working knowledge of each sport. I know how to organize, coordinate, and assist with all aspects of equipment management due to my experience. It has been a dream to work for a professional sports team, but the Maryland Tigers is a franchise that I truly believe in. I have watched as the organization supports young players and always gives back to the local community. Being that I have also volunteered with Little League teams, I know that the core values of the organization align with my own. I am confident that I would make an ideal candidate for the equipment intern role. Whether assisting coaches with drills or maintaining inventory, I can be an asset to the team. I look forward to learning more about the internship and discussing my qualifications in detail. I have provided my contact details for your convenience. Best regards, John Brown

Email cover letter example

Subject Line: Social Media Manager Application — Sam Smith Dear Mr. Williams, My name is Sam Smith and I believe I would be an excellent for your Social Media Manager position. As a recent Yune University graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in social media management and a member of the Media Communications Society, I am an expert across several major platforms. During my time as a board chairman, I successfully increased engagement by 86% on Facebook during my final campaign to increase enrollment. During my four years at Yune University, I maintained a 3.9 GPA while holding leadership positions across several campus organizations. Being involved in multiple groups taught me how to not only lead but also how to communicate effectively. During the time period that I managed the Instagram and LinkedIn accounts for the university’s English department, I led a team of six other students. I know that at Social Ink, collaboration, creativity, and social awareness are highly valued. Last year, the company ran a Pets Go Social campaign that raised more than $75,000 for dog shelters. This reminds me of an initiative I led across Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube that resulted in an increase of 250 followers and 25 pets getting adopted within 48 hours. I am passionate about getting involved in the community, and Social Ink would give me the opportunity to use my social media skills for that purpose. I believe that my academic history as well as my experience running successful social media campaigns would make me an ideal candidate. I would like to further discuss my resume and overall qualifications in more detail. Please reach out at your earliest convenience regarding the Social Media Manager position with Social Ink. Sincerely, Sam Smith

College student cover letter template

[Your Name] [Your Address] [City, State, ZIP Code] [Your Email Address] [Your Phone Number] [Date] [Employer’s Name] [Company Name] [Company Address] [City, State, ZIP Code] Dear [Employer’s Name] I am writing to express my interest in the [job title] at [company name] as advertised on [job posting] and to share my enthusiasm for joining your team. As a highly motivated and adaptable college student studying [your major] at [University name], I am eager to contribute my skills and learn from the amazing opportunities your organization offers. Throughout my academic journey, I have developed a solid foundation in [relevant skills or qualifications] which I believe make me a great fit for this role. During my time at [University name], I developed abilities in [mention a few key skills relevant to the position]. I am particularly drawn to [company name] because of its impressive track record and for the diverse group of professionals who share my passion for [industry or field]. Your company’s emphasis on [company’s focus] and its commitment to innovation make it an ideal environment for a proactive learner like me. Enclosed is my resume which provides more details about my academic achievements and relevant experiences. I welcome the opportunity to discuss in more detail how my background aligns with your needs. Please feel free to reach out to me at [your phone number] or [your email address] to schedule an interview or discuss my application further. Thank you for considering my application Sincerely, [Your name]

Before writing your letter, do your research on the prospective employer and find out their name and contact information. You should also follow any guidelines the company may have for their cover letters. Here are some more tips to keep in mind when writing your letter:

Do your research. Before you begin writing your cover letter, start researching the prospective employer. This goes beyond knowing when the company was first founded or the name of the current CEO. Find out what the work culture is like, what initiatives the organization has spearheaded, and what some of the current goals are. LinkedIn is one of the best resources for digging deeper when it comes to doing your homework on a company.

Follow the guidelines . Sometimes we can get wrapped up in the overall picture and overlook the small details. When it comes to applying for a job , you want to ensure that you are following the instructions exactly as they are given. If the internship or job posting asks for the cover letter to be saved in a certain format for email or be addressed to a specific person, make sure to follow the guidelines.

Provide up-to-date contact details. Make sure that you give the hiring manager your current contact information. This is a more common issue when the same cover letter template is reused, but this also is another reason why tailoring your letter is important. Clearly articulate to the hiring manager that they can reach you at any of the provided contact methods.

Confirm the recipient’s contact information. We already covered including the hiring manager’s contact information at the top of your letter but want to reiterate that you should verify these details. You should also confirm the email address when submitting electronically. If you send your resume and cover letter to the wrong recipient, you will miss out on the opportunity. You can always find the proper contact information within the job listing.

Add a subject line. This is a tip specifically for emailing your college cover letter. Every proper email needs a subject line that informs the intended recipient of what the message will be regarding. For your subject line, keep it simple with the position or internship that you are applying for, and your name.

Perfect your cover letter. Look at your cover letter and make sure that you have covered all of the basic structural elements . Did you start with a strong introduction to who you are? Did you highlight your education and how it has prepared you for the position? Will the reader be able to see your passion for their organization? Ask yourself if the hiring manager can get a definite sense of why you would be the best fit for the job.

It is always a good idea to reread your cover letter several times and have at least one other person look it over. Many students and alumni will have access to career service professionals or counselors who can assist with feedback. If not, having a trusted friend or family member with a strong sense of detail is also an excellent option.

Remember to show gratitude. It’s important to show your gratitude at the end of your letter. It shows that you are professional and appreciative of the hiring manager’s time.

Do college students need a cover letter?

Yes, college students should write a cover letter because it can be just as important as your resume. Your cover letter should address the recipient and show off your academic achievements. It’s also a great way to introduce yourself to potential employers.

What is a college student’s cover letter?

A college student’s cover letter is a cover letter that accompanies your resume when you apply for positions. This is similar to a regular cover letter, but you will include any academic achievements, GPA, or extracurriculars you are involved in that would be relevant to the job.

Harvard Extension School – Resume and Cover Letters

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Caitlin Mazur is a freelance writer at Zippia. Caitlin is passionate about helping Zippia’s readers land the jobs of their dreams by offering content that discusses job-seeking advice based on experience and extensive research. Caitlin holds a degree in English from Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, PA.

Matt Warzel a President of a resume writing firm (MJW Careers, LLC) with 15+ years of recruitment, outplacement, career coaching and resume writing experience. Matt is also a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW) and Certified Internet Recruiter (CIR) with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (Marketing Focus) from John Carroll University.

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Cover Letter Examples for Students and Recent Graduates

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What to Include in Your Cover Letter

College graduate cover letter example, student / recent graduate cover letter templates, student and recent graduate cover letter samples, how to write a cover letter, cover letter format and presentation tips.

If you're a student or a new grad, you may not have much experience in the workforce. This can make building a resume and writing a cover letter challenging. After all, if you haven't worked previously, what information can you include in these two documents?

Fortunately, on-the-job experience is not the only thing that shows your abilities. Here's guidance on what to include in your resume and cover letter, along with cover letter examples and cover letter templates are designed especially for high school students, as well as for college students and recent graduates seeking employment.

Academic Achievements and Extracurricular Activities

You can mention volunteer work, academic achievements, participation in clubs or activities (particularly those in which you held leadership roles), and internships. Your academic background is also an asset. Include details that are relevant to the position you want (use the job description as your guide to the qualities and training the employer seeks).

GPA and Honors

If you are an honors student with a GPA higher than 3.5, it is a good idea to mention this on a cover letter as well, along with any honors societies you have been inducted into.

Skills and Abilities

Other things you can mention are soft skills—interpersonal “people” skills like creative thinking, communication, teamwork, or time management that will help you to adapt easily to the people and clients or customers you will be working with.

Your goal in this cover letter is to show how you would be an asset to the company, describing the skills you bring that would allow you to perform well in the position.

Below, you'll find a list of student cover letters, listed by position and level of experience, to help you develop your own cover letter. 

Watch Now: 7 Tips for Finding Your First Job

You can use this sample as a model to write a college graduate cover letter. Download the template (compatible with Google Docs and Word Online), or read the text version below.

College Graduate Cover Letter Example (Text Version)

Lucy Applicant 123 Main Street Anytown, CA 12345

555-555-5555 lucy.applicant@email.com

October 18, 2021

Eric Lee Media Director Kansai Collaborative Arts 123 Business Rd. Business City, NY 54321

Dear Mr. Lee:

I am writing to you to express interest in the graphic design position as advertised on Indeed.com. As a recent graduate with experience in 3-D animation software and the Adobe suite of software, I believe I am a strong candidate for a position at Kansai Collaborative Arts.

 During my time at the University of Northern State, I was awarded the top prize in the student design competition for my version of an app that would allow students to learn Japanese characters on their own time.

In addition to graduating with a 3.75 GPA, I spent a semester at a university in Japan, and I have strong conversational skills in the Japanese language. I believe this would be an asset, as I know your studio does a lot of collaborations with major design studios in Japan.

 Although I am a recent college graduate, my maturity, artistic skills, ability to work with others, and knowledge of the Japanese language and culture will make me an asset to your studio.

 I have enclosed my resume and will email you within the next week to see if we can arrange a time to speak further. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Signature  (hard copy letter)

Before you can begin writing your cover letter, it's important to know the guidelines governing these letters. Unlike a casual email to a friend, there are set standards for how to greet recipients, organize the letter's content, and much more. That's where templates can help: they allow you to know what information to put where, and they help you format your letter correctly. Review the templates below: 

  • Cover Letter Format
  • Cover Letter Template
  • Email Cover Letter Template
  • Email Cover Letter Sample
  • Cover Letter Sample: General
  • Cover Letter Sample: Block Format
  • Microsoft Word Cover Letter Templates

These lists of cover letters include both general examples that will help you format your letter, as well as sample cover letters used to apply for specific positions, such as roles as a nanny or a marketing assistant.

Do not copy these sample letters—instead, use them as a guide to help you know what kind of information to include, and how to format your letter. 

Entry-Level Cover Letters

Have a look at these samples to see how best to present your experience when applying for an entry-level job.

  • Entry Level Inquiry Letter
  • Cover Letter Sample: Entry-Level

Student Cover Letters

As a student, the information you should emphasize in your cover letter will vary depending upon your level of education. Here are examples of effective cover letters created for students at the high school, college, and graduate levels.

  • Recent College Graduate Sample #1
  • Recent College Graduate Sample #2
  • Response to Job Posting
  • College Senior
  • Graduate Student
  • Networking Letter

Job-Specific Cover Letters

These cover letter samples target specific career fields. They demonstrate how to incorporate industry-specific keywords into your narrative.

  • Email Cover Letter - Psychology Job
  • Internship Cover Letter
  • Finance Internship Program
  • Entry Level Marketing

Cover Letters for Summer and Part-Time Jobs

Being able to write an enthusiastic and informative cover letter will set you apart from your competition when you apply for summer or part-time jobs while you’re still in school.

Make sure you send your cover letter and resume as soon as possible after a job is announced—these opportunities are snatched up quickly.

These samples can be modified to both summer and part-time work.

  • Part-Time Job
  • Summer Assistant Job
  • Email Summer Job
  • Summer Job #1
  • Summer Job #2
  • Summer Job Email Message
  • Camp Counselor
  • Email Editorial Assistant
  • Sales Associate
  • Summer Camp

This guide to writing a cover letter will walk you through everything you need to know to write a cover letter, including what to include in the letter, how to write it, and the proper cover letter format. Plus, find out about how to write a targeted cover letter and browse through additional cover letter samples and examples.

Here are cover letter tips and techniques for writing top-notch cover letters to send with your resume, including information about cover letter format and presentation, choosing a type of cover letter, writing custom cover letters, and cover letter examples and templates.

  • Marketing Cover Letter Example and Writing Tips
  • Student Resume Examples, Templates, and Writing Tips
  • Teaching Assistant Cover Letter Samples
  • Retail Cover Letter Examples and Writing Tips
  • Admissions Counselor Cover Letter and Resume Examples
  • Speech Pathologist Resume and Cover Letter Examples
  • Consulting Cover Letter Samples and Writing Tips
  • Academic Recommendation Letter Examples and Writing Tips
  • Social Worker Cover Letter and Resume Sample
  • Resume and Cover Letter Examples Listed By Job
  • Tutor Resume and Cover Letter Examples
  • Academic Advisor Cover Letter Sample and Writing Tips
  • Entry-Level Finance Cover Letter and Resume Samples
  • Software Developer Cover Letter and Resume Example
  • Receptionist Cover Letter Examples and Writing Tips
  • Cover Letter Examples for Sales and Marketing Jobs

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Cover Letter Tips for College Students and Recent Grads

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  • A succinct, engaging cover letter is key to getting noticed by hiring managers and recruiters.
  • Do ample research on the company so you can tailor your cover letter to the job.
  • A good cover letter has an engaging opening and highlights relevant skills and experiences.
  • Don't forget to proofread your cover letter and have someone else look it over.

Landing a job as a recent college graduate can be challenging, especially if you have little to no work experience. Fortunately, you can make up for a sparse resume with a strong cover letter. A well-crafted cover letter expands on the facts included in your resume , expresses a professional narrative, and demonstrates your ability to communicate effectively.

Aside from adding a personal touch, a good cover letter speaks directly to the requirements of the position you're applying for and succinctly sums up your personality, drive, skills, and accomplishments. Targeting keywords in the job description will also help your application get picked up by automatic application scanners and tracking systems.

In this guide, we show you how to write a cover letter, step by step. We'll look at formatting and go over what to include in a cover letter so that you immediately grab hiring managers' attention.

Research the Company Before Writing a Cover Letter

Research is one of the most important steps when applying for jobs. If you haven't researched the company you're applying for, how do you even know you want the job? Moreover, how could you possibly convince an employer you want a job if you know nothing about the company?

Learning more about an employer helps you tailor your cover letter to the company.

Learning more about an employer helps you tailor your cover letter to the company's mission, culture, and operations.

Start by analyzing the job description, paying close attention to the required and preferred skills. If skills are listed as required, ensure you point out each of these in your resume and cover letter, ideally using the same keywords from the job posting.

To research a potential employer, consult the company's website, industry publications, and social media. LinkedIn is a particularly useful tool for reading about companies' missions and hiring practices. You can also look for articles that mention the employer for details on past and current projects.

How to Format a Cover Letter

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Choose a Professional Font and Font Size

Effective formatting visually organizes the content of your cover letter and reduces clutter that gets in the way of reader comprehension.

Pick the same standard font for both your cover letter and your resume. Options include Arial, Calibri, Courier New, Times New Roman, and Verdana. Depending on the font, text sizes between 10 and 12 pts should guarantee readability.

Use Appropriate Margins

Use 1-inch margins on all sides of your cover letter and ensure that the text is left-aligned. Some employers may want to print out your cover letter and add notes in the margins. Additionally, leaving extra space can improve the readability of a professional cover letter and help you avoid cramming in too much information.

How long should a cover letter be? Usually just one page. If your cover letter spills onto a second page, try removing unnecessary details. If you're still struggling to fit everything on one page, reduce your margins to around 0.75 inches. The key is to make sure your cover letter gets straight to the point.

Include a Heading With Contact Information

A traditional cover letter heading appears in the top-left corner and includes your contact information (i.e., your name, address, phone number, and email) in a single-spaced block of text, followed by the date and the company's contact information.

Alternatively, you may include your name in large lettering at the top and put your contact information on a single line beneath it (typically separating the different elements with colons, vertical lines, or some other symbol). This style is particularly useful for saving space.

Aim for Short Paragraphs

Keep your cover letter to 3-4 paragraphs, and keep paragraphs to 3-5 sentences. To illustrate your skills and respond to any application prompts, each paragraph should make specific points to convince hiring managers you're well suited for the job.

It's equally important, however, to keep these paragraphs concise and straightforward. Never send a cover letter with one or two huge blocks of text, as this immediately shows the employer you lack the ability to communicate effectively.

How to Write a Cover Letter: 7 Essential Tips

1. address your letter to a specific person.

The job search can feel anonymous, especially if you submit an online application, but it's crucial you make a good first impression by addressing your cover letter to the specific recruiter or hiring manager. After all, they're real people who will appreciate the time you took to find out who they are.

If the company website and your online searches fail to reveal a hiring professional's name and title, contact the employer directly and politely ask for the information. If you still can't find the hiring manager's name, you can begin your cover letter with "Dear Hiring Manager" or even the name of the team or department (e.g., "Dear Sales Department").

2. Craft an Engaging Opening

Hiring managers typically spend just a few seconds scanning a cover letter before deciding whether or not they want a closer look. This means you'll need to grab their attention within the first two sentences.

Try to insert keywords from the job posting wherever possible — and mention an accomplishment.

Let them know which position you're applying for while expressing excitement about the opportunity to use your skills for the benefit of the employer. Try to insert keywords from the job posting wherever possible.

You should also mention an accomplishment. Strive for quantifiable or demonstrable details relevant to the job in question. If your work experience is slim, think beyond paid work and draw from academic projects, internships, and volunteer experiences.

For example, a graphic design student who's won several art awards might write something like "I'm an award-winning graphic designer looking to enhance my portfolio and join a team that values both creative expression and user experience."

3. Go Beyond Your Resume

A good cover letter adds to the information included in your resume, not just repeats it. Use the letter to elaborate on important experiences, skills, and responsibilities, particularly any that led to notable successes. Explain how your college studies, extracurriculars, and any professional or volunteer experiences have helped you gain the qualifications listed in the job description.

It's fine to mention your major, especially if it directly relates to the job, but don't turn your cover letter into a monotonous overview of your academic history. If you have a high GPA , it's probably worth putting on your resume but not in your cover letter.

4. Highlight Relevant Experiences

The bulk of your cover letter should emphasize your professional readiness. Highlight the skills employers care about by showing how your work and college experiences have made you an effective leader, communicator, and/or team player.

Make sure to highlight the skills employers care about.

For example, if you're applying for an entry-level software engineer position, you could mention specific projects you completed in school or during a summer internship. Note any challenges you faced, how you worked either by yourself or with others to overcome them, and the positive results that came about from your efforts.

Or say you're applying to become a communication associate at a nonprofit. In that case, you might describe a time when you had to respond to an urgent situation with an effective communication strategy.

If you're struggling to contextualize your skills due to a lack of professional experience, consider other life situations or activities in which these skills were necessary.

5. Showcase Your Skills

Writing a college student cover letter can seem daunting because you may not fully satisfy the list of requirements. A lack of work experience, however, doesn't mean a lack of qualifications. One way to identify your qualifications is to match your transferable skills to those valued by the employer.

In its career readiness report , the National Association of Colleges and Employers identifies eight transferable skills employers look for in candidates. One competency is leadership, defined as the way in which a worker motivates a team and leverages the collective strength to achieve a common goal.

If you've got a knack for leadership, you can illustrate it in the context of a group project, athletic competition, or summer internship. Remember to always connect your skills back to the employer's needs.

6. Use Action Verbs

Employers want to know you can produce desirable results. Action verbs not only make your cover letter more engaging, but they also show you understand how to communicate in a direct, confident manner. Be sure to insert action verbs when describing your skills and any previous work experience.

For example, you might write phrases like "increased high-intent traffic," "coordinated a successful newsletter campaign," or "boosted sales in the first quarter." You can also use action verbs to integrate keywords into your cover letter without these terms sounding out of place.

Indeed maintains a list of nearly 200 action verbs you can use to get ideas.

7. Close Strong

The final paragraph of a college student or recent graduate cover letter needs to seal the deal and get you an interview. The excited tone of your letter should also convey confidence as you delve into the specific aspects of the job and company you find attractive. Detail the broad goals you wish to achieve in this position and how you plan to bring value to the employer.

Finally, express gratitude for the opportunity to apply and thank the hiring team for their time and consideration. You can also write that you'd be glad to discuss your qualifications more in person or over the phone.

Finalizing Your College Student Cover Letter

Carefully edit and proofread.

When hiring managers sift through piles and piles of applications, a single spelling or grammatical error can destroy your chances of securing an interview. Once you finish the first draft of your cover letter, take a 24-hour break before going back to edit and proofread. Never rely solely on spellcheck to spot all typos.

Printing out your cover letter and reading it aloud can help you catch mistakes and inconsistencies more easily. As you read your cover letter, check that all contact information is correct and that your paragraphs are concise and cohesive.

Ask Someone to Look It Over

After an initial edit, recruit the assistance of a family member, peer, teacher, mentor, or advisor. By this point, you've spent a substantial amount of time with your letter, which may blind you to some obvious and not-so-obvious errors. By asking for feedback, you'll gain valuable insight into the clarity and cogency of your cover letter.

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Cover Letter Writing Guide 2023: Examples and Tips

Learn about the importance of a cover letter, discover three CV cover letter examples for jobs including management and middle management, as well as for students, graduates, and beginners.

[Featured Image] A hiring manager reviews a CV and cover letter during a video interview.

A well-structured cover letter, when combined with your CV, is key to finding the position you desire. A cover letter illustrates your expertise and qualifications for the job you seek. A cover letter offers the chance to describe specific situations, highlight important talents, and share professional goals that may not be addressed on your CV. 

Before you start drafting your CV cover letter, review some sample cover letters to discover effective techniques and important tips for creating a personal statement for your job application. This article explores three cover letter examples organised by genre and industry sectors to inspire you. 

Management cover letter example

[Receiver’s Address]


I am a seasoned corporate executive with a strong reputation for accelerating corporate growth and reorganising global businesses. In the role of senior manager, I shall contribute my drive and will to succeed to your company. I have primary areas of experience that I will contribute to your company, which are as follows:

I have a deep dedication to [the respective industry/sector] , having served in many roles and competencies.

My effective [the respective industry/sector] knowledge as well as the capacity to develop, comprehend, and resolve [the respective industry/sector] processes is bound to boost business market share gains, ultimately leading to financial prosperity.

I have an independent spirit, agility, and expertise that will help you build important connections to succeed in business. 

My experience of over three decades of smart, critical thinking activities has delivered productivity and profitability.

My [name of degrees] and community outreach management responsibilities with several non-profit organisations have further enhanced my abilities and flexibility to satisfy the work criteria. Since I have done this over the years, I'd like to share with you the high-quality service and value I can offer to your organisation.

 Thank you for taking the time to read this. I can be contacted on [contact details]

With warm regards,

[Closing Signature]

Middle management cover letter example

I'm writing to express my interest in the position of [position name] at [company name] . I'm certain that my level of knowledge fits well with the obligations described in your job description since I have over six years of experience operating the [specified niche] .

I've proven myself to be quite an efficient manager and a good leader in my work as [name of previous job position and the company name] . As I single-handedly taught and trained the whole [team name] staff in prep work for [name a commendable task carried out by you] , my worth became clear to the proprietors. Throughout the following years, my team regularly exceeded monthly [specified niche] targets.

Your company, I feel, would greatly benefit my expertise in the key segments:

High level of customer service criteria 

A passion for quality

A high level of dedication as well as leadership abilities

Delivering results under pressure

I believe my skills will contribute to [business name] ongoing growth. My experience in this field has equipped me for this opportunity, and I genuinely hope that I will be able to contribute to your team.

It would be an honour to speak with you about the [job position] in further depth. I'd be delighted to visit whenever it is most suited for you. 

I appreciate the time, and eagerly await your response.

CV cover letter sample for beginners, students, and graduates

I'm writing this letter to express my interest in [company name] ’s internship programme. I learnt about your organisation via my institution's student placement centre, and after browsing your website, I've become interested in your outstanding work in [ industry name] .

I'm now majoring in [subject area] and minoring in [subject area] at [institution name] , where I'll graduate [graduation date] . In addition to my  [subject area] and [subject area] experience, I specialise in [interest/subject area] . The opportunity to do my internship with [business name] will expand my knowledge and experience to progress in my profession while applying everything I've studied to support your business objectives.

I aim to work with an organisation like [business name] after college to get hands-on experience, [professional goal] , and eventually [professional goal] . With the correct opportunity and professional experience with well-known clients, I believe I can achieve my goals. I previously interned at [business name], where I worked on important projects for their major customers. I had the chance to study [name of technical skills/tools learned] during the same internship. I also learnt [example of initiative and outcome] . Given that you are seeking to expand your [team name] , I feel my understanding of [subject area] may be of value to you.

If you have any questions that you would like me to address, please contact me on [contact details].

Looking forward to hearing from you,

3 tips for writing a great cover letter

The cover letter templates above go beyond the information in a CV, assisting the recruiting supervisor and potential employers in quickly recognising the applicant’s value as an employee. Let’s explore the key ways this is achieved.

Be straightforward and succinct. They express most about what a cover letter ought to state in the first paragraphs, such as their expertise level and status, as well as how they got the position.

Be specific about experience and impact. The applicant outlines key expectations from the position description and shows their relevant skills and previous experience with similar tasks. They also share an example about just how they have driven impact in their present job. Your cover letter should include applicable situations that illustrate your potential to accomplish the responsibilities mentioned in the job description whether you are a fresh graduate asking for an apprenticeship or early in your career looking for your next role.

Include a clear call to action. In each example, the applicant signed off by reiterating their interest in the company and role, sharing their availability and willingness to connect, and providing their contact details such as a phone number or email address.

Get started writing your cover letter

Your cover letter is an opportunity to distinguish yourself. Consider a period when you delivered impact with a major project or implemented a new strategy to spur innovation. Since you will have more quantifiable achievements to rely on as you gain more expertise, your cover letter is the perfect spot to bring out these details. Make the most of this desirable opportunity to show off your skills, expertise, and abilities. 

Learn more about effective cover letters in the online course Writing Winning Resumes and Cover Letters from the University of Maryland. For more career planning assistance, consider courses like Successful Interviewing or Career Planning: A Path to Employment .

This content has been made available for informational purposes only. Learners are advised to conduct additional research to ensure that courses and other credentials pursued meet their personal, professional, and financial goals.

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3 College Student Cover Letter Examples Working in 2023 

Stephen Greet

  • College Student Cover Letter
  • College Student for Internship Cover Letter
  • College Student No Experience Cover Letter
  • Write Your College Student Cover Letter

Your education has equipped you with the knowledge and skills to succeed in any role you set your sights on. You perform excellent research, meet deadlines, and can handle data accurately.

Are your cover letter and complementary college student resume providing an effective overview of your capabilities?

Whether you’re applying to an advanced degree program or one of your first jobs, we have the resources to help you succeed. Check out our college student cover letter examples that have helped many academics grab their dream opportunities in 2023.

College Student Cover Letter Example


Microsoft Word

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Block Format

College student cover letter example

Why this cover letter works

  • As with this college student cover letter, use specific examples (whether volunteer work, internships, or babysitting siblings) to showcase your childcare proficiencies. Relevant keywords here include first aid/CPR. Meals preparation, storytelling.

College Student for Internship Cover Letter Example

College student for internship cover letter example

  • Go further to project yourself as a result-driven multifaceted candidate who isn’t just familiar with industry-specific proficiencies and tools (Cue SEO, SMM, and Google Analytics) but has used them to generate tangible results (Think 13% growth in followers).

College Student No Experience Cover Letter Example

College student no experience cover letter example

  • See how Nabil showcases his ability to connect with and care for canine pets in this college student no experience cover letter, using metrics to emphasize impact. Transferable skills gained during coursework (cue time management) can be pivotal for your candidacy.

Related cover letter examples

  • College student resume
  • High school student
  • Entry level
  • Career change

Tips to Write an Effective College Student Cover Letter

Salesperson pops out of computer screen to depict outselling the competition with sales cover letter

As a college student or recent grad, you may have limited work experience , making a cover letter feel challenging. However, with the right planning and use of your academic knowledge, you can write an effective cover letter that stands out. 

The first step is reviewing the job description and picking out job skills that each company emphasizes. For instance, someone applying for a marketing internship may notice a company needs help with lead generation. Then, they could highlight knowledge gained during classes about creating effective landing pages and social media campaigns that will help the company achieve its goals. 

how to write cover letter student

Grab attention with the opening of your college student cover letter

While writing reports for your classes, you’ve likely heard that immediately grabbing a reader’s attention is essential. The same is true with cover letters. The best way to make that initial connection is to greet the organization’s contact person by name. You can often find that in the job description or company website.   

Now that you have the hiring manager’s attention, you’ll want to take things a step further by connecting to the company’s mission and needs in your opening paragraph. For example, a college student applying for a dental hygiene internship may want to emphasize their eagerness to use their knowledge in X-rays and routine cleanings to help patients achieve a healthy smile.

The example below falls short since the applicant doesn’t greet someone by name or explain how their educational knowledge has equipped them for the role.

Needs to be more specific! 

As a recent graduate of Boston College’s nursing program, I’m eager to apply for the nursing internship at your company. I believe my education has equipped me with the knowledge to be a great addition to your team.

The opener below provides a more substantial overview of how the applicant’s knowledge from their animal behavior studies and skills in dog training commands will make them a great fit as a dog walker with Park Cities Pet Sitter. 

A great opener referencing specific skills! 

Dear Mr. Hill,

As one of the dedicated students of Southern Methodist University studying animal behavior in our Biology department, I am eager to bring my skills to Park Cities Pet Sitter as your next dog walker. With two years of experience volunteering at Dallas Dog and my proficiency in basic training commands and positive reinforcement techniques, I can provide excellent care to your canine clients.

how to write cover letter student

Provide the right experiences in the body of your college student cover letter

In the body of your college student cover letter, it’s important to get specific about the job skills that make you a great fit. For example, if you were applying for a student teaching opportunity, you may want to emphasize the classroom management and curriculum planning abilities you’ve gained in your college classes.  

You should also use numbers whenever possible. Even if you don’t have much work experience , you can still find data to back up your skill set, like grades, GPA, or accuracy.

A great body paragraph with essential metrics!

A summer internship at Chitech Solutions empowered my SEO prowess. Leveraging Google Analytics and keyword optimization strategies, our team facilitated a 28% improvement in organic search rankings and an 11.9% boost in website-generated leads.

how to write cover letter student

Leave a lasting impression while closing out your college student cover letter

Think of the closing of your cover letter like you’re wrapping up a persuasive class presentation. You’ll want to find ways to relate back to key points about how you connect to the company’s mission and the skills that make you a great fit. 

For instance, if you were applying to an entry-level accounting role, you could relate to how you’ll use your skills in QuickBooks to help a company achieve compliant financial practices.

Then, like any good persuasive presentation, you’ll want to use a call to action and thank the hiring manager for their time. 

The closer below isn’t making the right impact since the applicant doesn’t go into enough detail about the skills gained from their degree or their connection to the company’s mission.

Needs more detail to make an impact!

I believe my human resources degree has made me well-equipped for this internship. I look forward to discussing this role with you further. 

Rebecca Romanov 

The closer below does a better job relating to the applicant’s dedication to child safety and education, making them a great fit for Sittercity’s needs. 

Stand out by relating to the company’s mission! 

My experiences, coupled with my dedication to child safety and education, would be invaluable at Sittercity. Also worth noting, I have included my police clearance for your review. I look forward to discussing how my skill set could benefit and enrich your team at Sittercity.

Seline Dupont

College student cover letters should be one page long. Keep it concise and relevant for each job you apply to. For example, if you were applying to an entry-level IT role, a short overview of your troubleshooting and programming knowledge from relevant courses would help you stand out. 

You’ve likely gained a lot of skills through your education, so listing all of them would make your cover letter too long. Instead, try to focus on three to five that are relevant to a company’s needs, such as pressure management and structural analysis for someone applying to an engineering internship. 

The best achievements to write about will be ones where you have metrics to show your impact and that are highly relevant to company needs. For example, if you were applying to a production management internship, you could explain how you used lean management processes in a class project to boost efficiency by 41%. 

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StandOut CV

Student cover letter examples

Andrew Fennell

Getting a job while you’re a student can be a great way to earn extra cash. The trouble is, you often have little experience behind you, which can make your CV look rather sparse.

That’s where your cover letter comes in. This gives you a chance to go into more detail about your interests, studies and what makes you a good fit for the role.

Find out how to write a persuasive and engaging application, no matter how much experience you have, with our step-by-step guide and student cover letter examples below.

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Student cover letter example 1

Student cover letter 1

Student cover letter example 2

Student cover letter 2

Student cover letter example 3

Student cover letter 3

The example cover letters here should give you a good general idea on how your Student cover letter should be formatted and written.

The rest of this guide gives more specific guidance on how to create your own cover letter in this format, and even includes some templates you can copy and paste.

How to write a Student cover letter

A simple step-by-step guide to writing your very own winning cover letter.

How to write a cover letter

Write your cover letter in the body of an email/message

When you send a cover letter with a job application, you should always write your message into the body of your email – or the body of the messaging system if you are sending via a job website.

Why do this?

Simply because you want to get your message seen as soon as the recruiter opens your application.

If you attach the cover letter as a separate item, this means the recipient will have to open it before they can read it – slowing down the process and potentially causing frustration along the way.

So, write your cover note in the body of your email/message to ensure you make an instant connection with the reader.

Write cover letter in body of email

Start with a friendly greeting

Cover letter address

To kick your cover letter off, start with a friendly greeting to build rapport with the recruiter instantly.

Your greeting should be personable but professional. Not too casual, but not too formal either

Go with something like…

  • Hi [insert recruiter name]
  • Hi [insert department/team name]

Avoid old-fashioned greetings like “Dear sir/madam ” unless applying to very formal companies.

How to find the contact’s name?

Addressing the recruitment contact by name is an excellent way to start building a strong relationship. If it is not listed in the job advert, try these methods to find it.

  • Check out the company website and look at their  About page. If you see a hiring manager, HR person or internal recruiter, use their name. You could also try to figure out who would be your manager in the role and use their name.
  • Head to LinkedIn , search for the company and scan through the list of employees. Most professionals are on LinkedIn these days, so this is a good bet.

Identify the role you are applying for

Once you’ve opened up the cover letter with a warm greeting to start building a relationship, it is time to identify which role you want to apply for.

Recruiters are often managing multiple vacancies, so you need to ensure you apply to the correct one.

Be very specific and use a reference number if you can find one.

  • I am interested in applying for the position of *Student job* with your company.
  • I would like to apply for the role of Sales assistant (Ref: 406f57393)
  • I would like to express my interest in the customer service vacancy within your retail department
  • I saw your advert for a junior project manager on Reed and would like to apply for the role.

See also: CV examples – how to write a CV – CV profiles

Highlight your suitability

The sole objective of your cover letter is to motivate recruiters into to opening your CV. And you achieve this by quickly explaining your suitability to the roles you are applying for.

Take a look at the job descriptions you are applying to, and make note of the most important skills and qualifications being asked for.

Then, when crafting your cover letter, make your suitability the central focus.

Explain why you are the best qualified candidate, and why you are so well suited to carry out the job.

This will give recruiters all the encouragement they need to open your CV and consider you for the job.

Cover letter tips

Keep it short and sharp

It is best to keep your cover letter brief if you want to ensure you hold the attention of busy recruiters and hiring managers. A lengthy cover letter will probably not get read in full, so keep yours to around 3-6 sentences and save the real detail for your CV.

Remember the purpose of your cover letter is to quickly get recruiters to notice you and encourage them to open your CV, so it only needs to include the highlights of your experience.

Sign off professionally

To finish off your cover note, add a professional signature to the bottom, stating your important contact details and information.

This not only provides recruiters with multiple means of contacting you, but it also adds a nice professional appearance to the cover letter, which shows that you know how to conduct yourself in the workplace.

Include the following points;

  • A friendly sign off – e.g. “Warm regards”
  • Your full name
  • Phone number (one you can answer quickly)
  • Email address
  • Profession title
  • Professional social network – e.g. LinkedIn

Here is an example signature;

Warm regards,

Aaron Smith Customer service professional 075557437373 [email protected] LinkedIn

Quick tip : To save yourself from having to write your signature every time you send a job application, you can save it within your email drafts, or on a separate document that you could copy in.

Email signatures

What to include in your Student cover letter

Here’s what kind of content you should include in your Student cover letter…

The exact info will obviously depend on your industry and experience level, but these are the essentials.

  • Your relevant experience – Where have you worked and what type of jobs have you held?
  • Your qualifications – Let recruiters know about your highest level of qualification to show them you have the credentials for the job.
  • The impact you have made – Show how your actions have made a positive impact on previous employers; perhaps you’ve saved them money or helped them to acquire new customers?
  • Your reasons for moving – Hiring managers will want to know why you are leaving your current or previous role, so give them a brief explanation.
  • Your availability – When can you start a new job ? Recruiters will want to know how soon they can get you on board.

Don’t forget to tailor these points to the requirements of the job advert for best results.

Student cover letter templates

Copy and paste these Student cover letter templates to get a head start on your own.

Good morning, Jon

I would like to submit my application for the Finance internship at CF Finance, where I believe my skills in financial analysis and investment strategies can make a valuable contribution.

As a highly driven Finance undergraduate student at Bristol University, I possess a strong track record of analysing complex financial data and making informed recommendations, evident from my selection for the prestigious JPMorgan 2-week intensive programme. In my current part time job at Lloyds TSB, I have honed my attention to detail, ensuring a 99% accuracy rate in cash balancing and implementing a new cash management system that reduced discrepancies by 30% within the first quarter.

Additionally, my experience working with the team at JPMorgan allowed me to develop financial models and reports, leading to the implementation of an automated financial reporting system that reduced reporting time by 5%.

I am eager to continue learning and to have the opportunity to work alongside the team at CF Finance. I am available for an interview at your convenience to further discuss my qualifications. Thank you for considering my application.

Kind regards,

Shana Johnson

I am an enthusiastic student in my first year of sixth form with excellent time management skills, seeking to apply for the retail assistant job at White Stuff.

In my current role as a Shop Assistant at Clarkson Newsagents, I serve up to 50 customers per shift and my proactive problem-solving approach has garnered 40 named positive feedbacks in the last six months, reflecting my dedication to exceptional customer service. Balancing academic responsibilities with work commitments, I have maintained excellent grades and actively participate in school fundraisers and community service projects. Organising events such as quiz nights and completing a sponsored half marathon showcase my passion for teamwork and strong work ethic.

I am excited to contribute my customer service skills and attention to detail to your retail team. I am available for an interview from 22nd March, and I am eager to discuss how my skills can benefit your shop’s success.

Thank you for considering my application.

Rachel Blake

I hope you are well. I am a highly motivated and detail-oriented Chemistry student at the University of Newcastle, specialising in organic synthesis with technical expertise in using HPLC and GC-MS for quality checking and chemical identification, and I am writing to express my interest in your master’s program.

With a proven track record of streamlining laboratory workflows during group projects, I am passionate about delivering accurate and efficient results in my research. During my time as a Peer Tutor at UNSU, I took on the responsibility of assisting freshman chemistry students, providing one-on-one tutoring and conducting revision workshops. Through these efforts, I successfully elevated the average test scores by an impressive 15% within just two years, showcasing my ability to effectively communicate complex concepts and support students in their academic journey. I am keen to further hone my analytical skills and contribute to cutting-edge research projects, and the research topics and innovative environment of your university laboratory aligns perfectly with my career aspirations.

I sincerely appreciate your consideration of my application and I am available for an interview at your earliest convenience.

All the best,

Fraser Bleaker

Writing a strong attention-grabbing cover letter is a vital step in landing a good Student job.

Use the tips, strategies and examples above to get more responses from you job applications and start lining job interview up.

Good luck with your job search!

The Writing Center • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Academic Cover Letters

What is this handout about.

The long list of application materials required for many academic teaching jobs can be daunting. This handout will help you tackle one of the most important components: the cover letter or letter of interest. Here you will learn about writing and revising cover letters for academic teaching jobs in the United States of America.

What is an academic cover letter?

An academic cover letter describes your experiences and interest as a candidate for a specific position. It introduces you to the hiring committee and demonstrates how your academic background fits with the description of the position.

What do cover letters for academic teaching jobs typically contain?

At their most basic level, academic cover letters accomplish three things: one, they express your interest in the job; two, they provide a brief synopsis of your research and teaching; and three, they summarize your past experiences and achievements to illustrate your competence for the job. For early-career scholars, cover letters are typically no more than two pages (up to four pages for senior scholars). Occasionally, a third page may make sense for an early-career scholar if the application does not require a separate teaching statement and/or research statement. Digital versions of cover letters often contain hyperlinks to your CV or portfolio page. For some fields, cover letters may also include examples of your work, including music, popular articles, and other multimedia related to your research, service, or teaching available online. Typically, letters appear on departmental or university letterhead and include your signature. Above all, a strong cover letter presents your accomplishments and your familiarity with the institution and with the position.

How should I prepare to write my academic cover letter?

Like all writing, composing a cover letter is a process. The process may be as short as a few hours or as long as several weeks, but at the end the letter should present you as a strong candidate for the job. The following section has tips and questions for thinking through each stage of this writing process. You don’t need to answer all of these questions to write the letter; they are meant to help you brainstorm ideas.

Before you begin writing your cover letter, consider researching the institution, the department, and the student population. Incorporating all three aspects in your letter will help convey your interest in the position.

Get to know the institution. When crafting your cover letter, be aware of the type of institution to which you are applying. Knowing how the institution presents itself can help you tailor your letter and make it more specific.

  • Where is the institution located?
  • Is it on a quarter-system or semester-system?
  • What type of institution is it? Is it an R1? Is it an R2? Is it a liberal arts college? Is it an HBCU? Is it a community college? A private high school?
  • What is the institution’s culture? Is it teaching-focused or research-focused? Does it privilege experiential learning? Does it value faculty involvement outside the classroom? Is it affiliated with a specific religious tradition?
  • Does it have any specific institutional commitments?
  • How does the institution advocate for involvement in its local community?
  • What are the professional development opportunities for new and junior faculty?

Learn about the department. Knowing the specific culture and needs of the department can help you reach your audience: the department members who will be reading your documents and vetting you as a candidate.

  • Who is on the search committee? Who is the search committee chair?
  • What is the official name of the department?
  • Which different subfields make up the department?
  • Is it a dual appointment or a position in a dual department?
  • How does the department participate in specific types of student outreach?
  • Does the department have graduate students? Does it offer a terminal Master’s degree, Ph.D., or both? How large are the cohorts? How are they funded?
  • Does the department encourage or engage in interdisciplinary work?
  • Does the majority of the department favor certain theoretical or methodological approaches?
  • Does the department have partnerships with local institutions? If so, which ones?
  • Is the department attempting to fill a specific vacancy, or is it an entirely new position?
  • What are the typical course offerings in the department? Which courses might you be expected to teach? What courses might you be able to provide that are not currently available?

Consider the students. The search committee will often consider how you approach instructing and mentoring the student body. Sometimes committees will even reserve a position for a student or solicit student feedback on a candidate:

  • What populations constitute the majority of the undergraduate population?
  • Have there been any shifts in the student population recently?
  • Do students largely come from in-state or out-of-state?
  • Is there an international student population? If so, from which countries?
  • Is the university recruiting students from traditionally underrepresented populations?
  • Are students particularly active on campus? If so, how?

Many answers to these questions can be found both in the job description and on the institution’s website. If possible, consider contacting someone you know at the institution to ask about the culture directly. You can also use the institution’s course catalog, recruitment materials, alumni magazine, and other materials to get answers to these questions. The key is to understand the sort of institution to which you are applying, its immediate needs, and its future trajectory.

Remember, there is a resource that can help you with all three aspects—people. Reach out to your advisor, committee members, faculty mentors, and other contacts for insight into the prospective department’s culture and faculty. They might even help you revise your letter based on their expertise. Think of your job search as an opportunity to cultivate these relationships.

After you have done some initial research, think about how your experiences have prepared you for the job and identify the ones that seem the most relevant. Consider your previous research, internships, graduate teaching, and summer experiences. Here are some topics and questions to get you started thinking about what you might include.

Research Experiences. Consider how your research has prepared you for an academic career. Since the letter is a relatively short document, select examples of your research that really highlight who you are as a scholar, the direction you see your work going, and how your scholarship will contribute to the institution’s research community.

  • What are your current research interests?
  • What topics would you like to examine in the future?
  • How have you pursued those research interests?
  • Have you traveled for your research?
  • Have you published any of your research? Have you presented it at a conference, symposium, or elsewhere?
  • Have you worked or collaborated with scholars at different institutions on projects? If so, what did these collaborations produce?
  • Have you made your research accessible to your local community?
  • Have you received funding or merit-based fellowships for your research?
  • What other research contributions have you made? This may include opinion articles, book chapters, or participating as a journal reviewer.
  • How do your research interests relate to those of other faculty in the department or fill a gap?

Teaching Experience. Think about any teaching experience you may have. Perhaps you led recitations as a teaching assistant, taught your own course, or guest lectured. Pick a few experiences to discuss in your letter that demonstrate something about your teaching style or your interest in teaching.

  • What courses are you interested in teaching for the department? What courses have you taught that discussed similar topics or themes?
  • What new courses can you imagine offering the department that align with their aim and mission?
  • Have you used specific strategies that were helpful in your instruction?
  • What sort of resources do you typically use in the classroom?
  • Do you have anecdotes that demonstrate your teaching style?
  • What is your teaching philosophy?
  • When have you successfully navigated a difficult concept or topic in the classroom, and what did you learn?
  • What other opportunities could you provide to students?

Internships/Summer/Other Experiences. Brainstorm a list of any conferences, colloquiums, and workshops you have attended, as well as any ways you have served your department, university, or local community. This section will highlight how you participate in your university and scholarly community. Here are some examples of things you might discuss:

  • Professional development opportunities you may have pursued over the summer or during your studies
  • International travel for research or presentations
  • Any research you’ve done in a non-academic setting
  • Presentations at conferences
  • Participation in symposia, reading groups, working groups, etc.
  • Internships in which you may have implemented your research or practical skills related to your discipline
  • Participation in community engagement projects
  • Participation in or leadership of any scholarly and/or university organizations

In answering these questions, create a list of the experiences that you think best reflect you as a scholar and teacher. In choosing which experiences to highlight, consider your audience and what they would find valuable or relevant. Taking the time to really think about your reader will help you present yourself as an applicant well-qualified for the position.

Writing a draft

Remember that the job letter is an opportunity to introduce yourself and your accomplishments and to communicate why you would be a good fit for the position. Typically, search committees will want to know whether you are a capable job candidate, familiar with the institution, and a great future addition to the department’s faculty. As such, be aware of how the letter’s structure and content reflect your preparedness for the position.

The structure of your cover letter should reflect the typical standards for letter writing in the country in which the position is located (the list below reflects the standards for US letter writing). This usually includes a salutation, body, and closing, as well as proper contact information. If you are affiliated with a department, institution, or organization, the letter should be on letterhead.

  • Use a simple, readable font in a standard size, such as 10-12pt. Some examples of fonts that may be conventional in your field include Arial, Garamond, Times New Roman, and Verdana, among other similar fonts.
  • Do not indent paragraphs.
  • Separate all paragraphs by a line and justify them to the left.
  • Make sure that any included hyperlinks work.
  • Include your signature in the closing.

Before you send in your letter, make sure you proofread and look for formatting mistakes. You’ll read more about proofreading and revising later in this handout!

The second most important aspect of your letter is its content. Since the letter is the first chance to provide an in-depth introduction, it should expand on who you are as a scholar and possible faculty member. Below are some elements to consider including when composing your letter.

Identify the position you are applying to and introduce yourself. Traditionally, the first sentence of a job letter includes the full name of the position and where you discovered the job posting. This is also the place to introduce yourself and describe why you are applying for this position. Since the goal of a job letter is to persuade the search committee to include you on the list of candidates for further review, you may want to include an initial claim as to why you are a strong candidate for the position. Some questions you might consider:

  • What is your current status (ABD, assistant professor, post-doc, etc.)?
  • If you are ABD, have you defended your dissertation? If not, when will you defend?
  • Why are you interested in this position?
  • Why are you a strong candidate for this position?

Describe your research experience and interests. For research-centered positions, such as positions at R1 or other types of research-centered universities, include information about your research experience and current work early in the letter. For many applicants, current work will be the dissertation project. If this is the case, some suggest calling your “dissertation research” your “current project” or “work,” as this may help you present yourself as an emerging scholar rather than a graduate student. Some questions about your research that you might consider:

  • What research experiences have you had?
  • What does your current project investigate?
  • What are some of the important methods you applied?
  • Have you collaborated with others in your research?
  • Have you acquired specific skills that will be useful for the future?
  • Have you received special funding? If so, what kind?
  • Has your research received any accolades or rewards?
  • What does your current project contribute to the field?
  • Where have you presented your research?
  • Have you published your research? If so, where? Or are you working on publishing your work?
  • How does your current project fit the job description?

Present your plans for future research. This section presents your research agenda and usually includes a description of your plans for future projects and research publications. Detailing your future research demonstrates to the search committee that you’ve thought about a research trajectory and can work independently. If you are applying to a teaching-intensive position, you may want to minimize this section and/or consider including a sentence or two on how this research connects to undergraduate and/or graduate research opportunities. Some questions to get you started:

  • What is your next research project/s?
  • How does this connect to your current and past work?
  • What major theories/methods will you use?
  • How will this project contribute to the field?
  • Where do you see your specialty area or subfield going in the next ten years and how does your research contribute to or reflect this?
  • Will you be collaborating with anyone? If so, with whom?
  • How will this future project encourage academic discourse?
  • Do you already have funding? If so, from whom? If not, what plans do you have for obtaining funding?
  • How does your future research expand upon the department’s strengths while simultaneously diversifying the university’s research portfolio? (For example, does your future research involve emerging research fields, state-of-the-art technologies, or novel applications?)

Describe your teaching experience and highlight teaching strategies. This section allows you to describe your teaching philosophy and how you apply this philosophy in your classroom. Start by briefly addressing your teaching goals and values. Here, you can provide specific examples of your teaching methods by describing activities and projects you assign students. Try to link your teaching and research together. For example, if you research the rise of feminism in the 19th century, consider how you bring either the methodology or the content of your research into the classroom. For a teaching-centered institution, such as a small liberal arts college or community college, you may want to emphasize your teaching more than your research. If you do not have any teaching experience, you could describe a training, mentoring, or coaching situation that was similar to teaching and how you would apply what you learned in a classroom.

  • What is your teaching philosophy? How is your philosophy a good fit for the department in which you are applying to work?
  • What sort of teaching strategies do you use in the classroom?
  • What is your teaching style? Do you lecture? Do you emphasize discussion? Do you use specific forms of interactive learning?
  • What courses have you taught?
  • What departmental courses are you prepared to teach?
  • Will you be able to fill in any gaps in the departmental course offerings?
  • What important teaching and/or mentoring experiences have you had?
  • How would you describe yourself in the classroom?
  • What type of feedback have you gotten from students?
  • Have you received any awards or recognition for your teaching?

Talk about your service work. Service is often an important component of an academic job description. This can include things like serving on committees or funding panels, providing reviews, and doing community outreach. The cover letter gives you an opportunity to explain how you have involved yourself in university life outside the classroom. For instance, you could include descriptions of volunteer work, participation in initiatives, or your role in professional organizations. This section should demonstrate ways in which you have served your department, university, and/or scholarly community. Here are some additional examples you could discuss:

  • Participating in graduate student or junior faculty governance
  • Sitting on committees, departmental or university-wide
  • Partnerships with other university offices or departments
  • Participating in community-partnerships
  • Participating in public scholarship initiatives
  • Founding or participating in any university initiatives or programs
  • Creating extra-curricular resources or presentations

Present yourself as a future faculty member. This section demonstrates who you will be as a colleague. It gives you the opportunity to explain how you will collaborate with faculty members with similar interests; take part in departmental and/or institution wide initiatives or centers; and participate in departmental service. This shows your familiarity with the role of faculty outside the classroom and your ability to add to the departmental and/or institutional strengths or fill in any gaps.

  • What excites you about this job?
  • What faculty would you like to collaborate with and why? (This answer may be slightly tricky. See the section on name dropping below.)
  • Are there any partnerships in the university or outside of it that you wish to participate in?
  • Are there any centers associated with the university or in the community that you want to be involved in?
  • Are there faculty initiatives that you are passionate about?
  • Do you have experience collaborating across various departments or within your own department?
  • In what areas will you be able to contribute?
  • Why would you make an excellent addition to the faculty at this institution?

Compose a strong closing. This short section should acknowledge that you have sent in all other application documents and include a brief thank you for the reader’s time and/or consideration. It should also state your willingness to forward additional materials and indicate what you would like to see as next steps (e.g., a statement that you look forward to speaking with the search committee). End with a professional closing such as “Sincerely” or “Kind Regards” followed by your full name.

If you are finding it difficult to write the different sections of your cover letter, consider composing the other academic job application documents (the research statement, teaching philosophy, and diversity statement) first and then summarizing them in your job letter.

Different kinds of letters may be required for different types of jobs. For example, some jobs may focus on research. In this case, emphasize your research experiences and current project/s. Other jobs may be more focused on teaching. In this case, highlight your teaching background and skills. Below are two models for how you could change your letter’s organization based on the job description and the institution. The models offer a guide for you to consider how changing the order of information and the amount of space dedicated to a particular topic changes the emphasis of the letter.

Research-Based Position Job Letter Example:

Teaching-based position job letter example:.

Remember your first draft does not have to be your last. Try to get feedback from different readers, especially if it is one of your first applications. It is not uncommon to go through several stages of revisions. Check out the Writing Center’s handout on editing and proofreading and video on proofreading to help with this last stage of writing.

Potential pitfalls

Using the word dissertation. Some search committee members may see the word “dissertation” as a red flag that an applicant is too focused on their role as a graduate student rather than as a prospective faculty member. It may be advantageous, then, to describe your dissertation as current research, a current research project, current work, or some other phrase that demonstrates you are aware that your dissertation is the beginning of a larger scholarly career.

Too much jargon. While you may be writing to a specific department, people on the search committee might be unfamiliar with the details of your subfield. In fact, many committees have at least one member from outside their department. Use terminology that can easily be understood by non-experts. If you want to use a specific term that is crucial to your research, then you should define it. Aim for clarity for your reader, which may mean simplification in lieu of complete precision.

Overselling yourself. While your job letter should sell you as a great candidate, saying so (e.g., “I’m the ideal candidate”) in your letter may come off to some search committee members as presumptuous. Remember that although you have an idea about the type of colleague a department is searching for, ultimately you do not know exactly what they want. Try to avoid phrases or sentences where you state you are the ideal or the only candidate right for the position.

Paying too much attention to the job description. Job descriptions are the result of a lot of debate and compromise. If you have skills or research interests outside the job description, consider including them in your letter. It may be that your extra research interests; your outside skills; and/or your extracurricular involvements make you an attractive candidate. For example, if you are a Latin Americanist who also happens to be well-versed in the Spanish Revolution, it could be worth mentioning the expanse of your research interests because a department might find you could fill in other gaps in the curriculum or add an additional or complementary perspective to the department.

Improper sendoff. The closing of your letter is just as important as the beginning. The end of the letter should reflect the professionalism of the document. There should be a thank-you and the word sincerely or a formal equivalent. Remember, it is the very last place in your letter where you present yourself as a capable future colleague.

Small oversights. Make sure to proofread your letter not just for grammar but also for content. For example, if you use material from another letter, make sure you do not include the names of another school, department, or unassociated faculty! Or, if the school is in Chicago, make sure you do not accidentally reference it as located in the Twin Cities.

Name dropping. You rarely know the internal politics of the department or institution to which you are applying. So be cautious about the names you insert in your cover letters. You do not want to unintentionally insert yourself into a departmental squabble or add fire to an interdepartmental conflict. Instead, focus on the actions you will undertake and the initiatives you are passionate about.

Works consulted

We consulted these works while writing this handout. This is not a comprehensive list of resources on the handout’s topic, and we encourage you to do your own research to find additional publications. Please do not use this list as a model for the format of your own reference list, as it may not match the citation style you are using. For guidance on formatting citations, please see the UNC Libraries citation tutorial . We revise these tips periodically and welcome feedback.

Ball, Cheryl E. 2013. “Understanding Cover Letters.” Inside Higher Ed , November 3, 2013. https://www.insidehighered.com/advice/2013/11/04/essay-cover-letter-academic-jobs .

Borchardt, John. 2014. “Writing a Winning Cover Letter.” Science Magazine , August 6, 2014. https://www.sciencemag.org/careers/2014/08/writing-winning-cover-letter# .

Carnegie Classifications of Institutions of Higher Education. n.d. “Basic Classification Description.” Accessed November 1, 2020. https://carnegieclassifications.iu.edu/classification_descriptions/basic.php .

Helmreich, William. 2013. “Your First Academic Job.” Inside Higher Ed , June 17, 2013. https://www.insidehighered.com/advice/2013/06/17/essay-how-land-first-academic-job .

Kelsky, Karen. 2013. “How To Write a Journal Article Submission Cover Letter.” The Professor Is In (blog), April 26, 2013. https://theprofessorisin.com/2013/04/26/how-to-write-a-journal-article-submission-cover-letter/ .

Tomaska, Lubomir, and Josef Nosek. 2008. “Ten Simple Rules for Writing a Cover Letter to Accompany a Job Application for an Academic Position.” PLoS Computational Biology 14(5). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pcbi.1006132 .

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How to Write a Cover Letter for Students

Smiling Asian teen girl sits on floor with laptop writing cover letter

You’ve found a dream job posting and worked hard to create a polished resume. But before you submit your application, you need to write a cover letter. It’s an essential written document that accompanies your resume and showcases how your skills and work experience match up with the key requirements listed in the job description.

Of course, writing the thing is easier said than done, especially when it comes to creating a cover letter for students. Luckily, we’ve talked to the pros and got the 411 on cover letters. This article will cover how to address a cover letter to striking the right professional cover letter format to how to write a cover letter with no experience. Dive in and learn how you make the best first impression to a prospective employer.

What is a cover letter?

A cover letter is a one-page written introduction to a prospective employer, which is submitted with your job application. Consider it the sidekick to your resume : it briefly explains why you’re applying for the position and gives you a chance to sell your skills.

“It sends out a call for action for them to call you for an interview,” says Christine VandeGraaf, General Manager of Employment, Training and Settlement Services at the YMCA of Hamilton/Burlington/Brantford. 

These days, debates rage about whether the cover letter is dead , and the jury is still out on the verdict. While it’s true that some employers are phasing it out, a cover letter can nonetheless give you a leg up in the job application process. 

“The potential employer is seeing dozens of other resumes along with yours,” says Cheyene Shuart and Abby Russell from the YMCA of Southwestern Ontario. “So your cover letter is your chance to start a conversation with the employer and show them who you really are and why you would be a good fit for the position.”

Do you need a cover letter as a teenager?

The unanimous answer from the experts is…yes! Teenagers should always include a cover letter with their resume, even if a job posting doesn’t explicitly state that one is required. Consider it a best practice that can help you stand out above the rest, and if you have limited work experience, the experts say it can especially give you a competitive edge. 

“It can be intimidating to find work when you haven’t had much (or any) work experience, especially when most positions are looking for previous experience,” says Shuart. “Sometimes resumes aren’t enough to prove to the employer that you would be a good fit for the position,” adds Russell. 

“Cover letters are meant to highlight a little bit of your experience and skills, but they are mostly used to explain how that experience and skills relate to this exact position, which is what matters the most to potential employers.” 

Read more: 14 best part-time jobs for teens . 

teen boy looks thoughtfully at laptop writing cover letter for job

What should a high school cover letter include?

Whatever you do, don’t draft a saga of all the things you’ve ever done in your life and why it makes you great. When it comes to writing a cover letter, brevity is your BFF: Recruiters generally spend six seconds reviewing the average candidate . Make every word count! Here’s what should make the cut in your cover letter, including how to address a cover letter.

Your contact information

Your contact information should appear first. Typically, this section sits in the left-hand corner at the top of the page and includes your name, address, email address, website, LinkedIn URL, and phone number in a listicle format.

By the way, now is the time to create a professional email address. Keep it simple: use your name ([email protected]) or create a generic address ([email protected]). 

Hit the enter button twice and write the date in full [DAY/MONTH/YEAR].

The employer’s contact information

Next, include all the employer’s contact information two lines after the date. List the hiring manager/employer’s name, company name, company address, and any other contact information pulled from the job posting.

Start with a polite greeting, such as “Dear [Ms./Mr./Dr./Professor/etc.] [LAST NAME].” If you aren’t sure of the hiring manager’s gender or wish to avoid gendered greetings altogether, you can enter their full name (“Dear FIRST NAME/LAST NAME”).

Avoid using “To whom it may concern” if you can, as some experts say this greeting is starting to feel a little tired .

First paragraph: Introduce yourself 

Right off the bat, the first paragraph should cover the basics: who you are, what position you’re applying for, how you heard about the position, why it interests you, and what makes you an ideal candidate.

 “This should be no more than three or four sentences and should just be a quick snapshot to capture the reader’s attention,” says Shuart and Russell.

Second paragraph: Your qualifications 

The next paragraph should describe your credentials as it relates to the job description. Specifically, describe how your relevant education, work/volunteer, and skills or training experience make you a good fit for the job. But keep it short: Focus on how your accomplishments match the job requirements and leave the nitty-gritty details for your resume. This section should be no more than five to seven sentences. 

“When writing sentences about your skills and how they apply to the job, always explain when you used the skill, how you used it, and what the end result was,” says Shuart and Russell. “This shows the employer that you did your homework on what they are looking for and helps to illustrate why you would be a good fit.”

For example, if the job posting is asking for “excellent communication skills,” you could talk about your experience as a student council representative: “As student council secretary, I am responsible for producing an online newsletter that is distributed monthly to over 700 students—an experience that has given me the opportunity to build and apply my excellent communication skills.” 

Depending on the job, you may also want to highlight other strengths or “selling features” that could help get you onto the interview list.

“For a young person, it may include phrases such as availability (evenings/days/weekends) driver’s license and access to a car, WHMIS certifications, or how the experience will fit into their future career goals,” says VandeGraaf. 

The bottom line: Explain how your qualifications directly relate to the position and use concrete examples.

Closing paragraph: Wrap up and thank you 

In your final paragraph (around three to five sentences), wrap up with a brief conclusion about why the skills you highlighted make you a good fit for the job. Shuart and Russell also say to “be bold” and include a call to action—such as requesting a job interview —as well as restate how you can be contacted (“I can be reached by mobile phone or email”). Last but not least, don’t forget to thank the employer for their time and consideration. 

“They have lots of resumes to get through, so a little appreciation can help them remember you better!” they add.

End on a professional note: “Finish strong with a polite, formal closing, such as “Sincerely, [YOUR FULL NAME]”.

Learn more: Job interview questions for teens and sample answers .

Tips for writing a cover letter for a student with no work experience 

No work experience under your belt? You’ve got this! Here are a few tips for how to write a cover letter with no experience. 

Read the job posting

“The job posting tells you what skills and experience the employer is looking for, so you should show the employer how you measure up to their needs,” says Shuart and Russell. It also gives away keywords to use in your cover letter and resume.  

Prove your skills

Make a list of the key skills required for the position (e.g., excellent communication, time management, problem-solving abilities). Then, think of examples of when you accomplished something using those desired skills. “Whether it was work, volunteer, or academic experience, the most important part is proving you have the skill,” says Shuart and Russell. “You also can relate it to the position: ‘My communication skills would help me build a strong rapport with customers.’” If you’re struggling to make the connection, ask a friend or family member to help you brainstorm. 

Group of three teens wearing green t-shirts that says "volunteer"

Think outside the box

If you’ve never had a job, draw on your lived experience to illustrate putting your skills into practice. Were you a volunteer tennis coach for kids last summer? Did you organize a climate justice rally that 500 people attended? Did you teach your grandma how to use Microsoft Office on a weekend? “Any experience is good experience!” says Shuart and Russell. “You don’t have to have previous work experience to have good communication. Can you use a volunteering or academic example?”

Use keywords

If the job is asking for “excellent customer service skills,” include that phrase somewhere in your cover letter. “Some employers use software that searches for the keywords they are looking for, so your cover letter could be screened out if you don’t have the keywords noted in the job posting,” says Shuart and Russell. “The other benefit of using these keywords is showing the employer you read carefully through their job posting. It’s a great, subtle way to show you pay attention to details as well!”

Use “action” words to paint a picture

Use descriptive language to showcase your skills and experience, as well as your accomplishments. Instead of simply saying you did something, use “action” verbs such as led, researched, created, managed, delivered, resolved, founded, developed, tracked, collaborated, grew, or promoted. Put your thesaurus to work! 

Keep it simple

A cover letter should be easy-to-read and not cluttered with text. Keep it simple and don’t bedazzle it with fancy colours and graphics. “Most employers prefer to see simple, easy-to-follow applications,” say Shuart and Russell. “Keep most of your text left-aligned and keep it professional-looking.”

Run a spelling and grammar check. Read your cover letter out loud to catch any long-winded sentences or awkward transitions. Get a parent or friend to proofread for typos. Double-check that the hiring manager’s name is spelled correctly. Your cover letter should be as clean as a whistle before you hit send.

Learn more: Best summer jobs for teens in Canada .

Sample cover letter or high school student

Need inspo to write a killer cover letter? Here’s a sample cover letter for high school students.

Teen girl holding pile of books and working at library

Jennifer McGee

1000 Fairyland Blvd

Toronto, Ontario

(416) 111-4444

[email protected]

January 1, 2023

Theresa Wright

Head Librarian

Toronto Public Library – Palmerston Branch

560 Palmerston Ave

Toronto, ON M6G 2P7 

Dear Ms. Wright,

Please accept my application for the position of Library Page at the Toronto Public Library, Palmerston Branch. As an avid reader and regular library patron, I was very excited to learn about the available position, which is currently posted on your organization’s website. My professionalism, work ethic, and understanding and appreciation for public service make me an ideal candidate for this position. 

As student council secretary, I am responsible for producing an online newsletter that is distributed bi-weekly to over 700 students—an experience that has given me the opportunity to apply my excellent communication skills in action. Most recently, I completed a twelve-week co-op experience at FoodShare Toronto, where I worked in the community garden and supported food literacy workshops in schools. The experience gave me an opportunity to interact with the public in a professional manner, as well as complete tasks independently and part of a team. My values for hard work and continuous learning allowed me to complete the co-op with a grade of 95%. My time management skills were also demonstrated when I had to juggle three essays and two exams during last semester. I used my superior organizational skills to ensure that I prioritize my school work based on difficulty level and deadline, while balancing my hobbies of tennis and piano. As a result of my efforts, I achieved Honour Roll status and a good work-life balance. 

The Toronto Public Library values teamwork and public service, both of which align with my skills, experience, and values. I also get enormous satisfaction in serving the public and have a passion for promoting literacy. Based on my qualifications, I believe I would be a strong member of the team at the Palmerston Branch. I would love to discuss my candidacy further in an interview with you. I can be reached by phone or email. Thank you so much for your time and for considering my application. 


Last word about how to write a cover letter like a pro 

The task of writing a cover letter can feel daunting when you’re facing a blank screen. But there’s only one way to overcome that hurdle: start writing! Using these expert tips, kick off your letter by formally introducing yourself and then outlining how your skills and experience make you suited to the job. Use concrete examples that are action- and results-oriented, showing (not just telling!) how you’re a great candidate. 

If you’ve never had a job, remember that your lived experience is equally valuable, and no employer expects you to have a plethora of job experience at this stage in your life. Avoid padding your cover letter with overblown achievements, and focus on sharing what you have to offer. 

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This article offers general information only and is not intended as legal, financial or other professional advice. A professional advisor should be consulted regarding your specific situation. While the information presented is believed to be factual and current, its accuracy is not guaranteed and it should not be regarded as a complete analysis of the subjects discussed. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the author(s) as of the date of publication and are subject to change. No endorsement of any third parties or their advice, opinions, information, products or services is expressly given or implied by Royal Bank of Canada or its affiliates.


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How to Create a Compelling Cover Letter in Microsoft Word

Stand out from the competition with a cover letter that gets you noticed. Learn how to craft a compelling cover letter in Microsoft Word easily.

Every time you apply for a job, it's a good idea to include a cover letter. Deciding how to write each one is hard, but at least you don’t have to start from scratch with their design.

Microsoft Word offers templates and welcomes third-party designs to help you create compelling cover letters. Here’s how to use such options in Word and make the best first impression possible to potential employers.

Use Microsoft Word’s Cover Letter Templates

Formal letters don’t have to be bland. Go to File > More templates on Word, and type “cover letter” in the search box. You’ll find several stylish designs that add structure and color to your document.

What reflects you better, a subtle or sharp color scheme? If you’re considering a bold header for your professional details, learn how to design letterheads on Word , too. You can even add your portrait to your cover letter.

Microsoft Word’s built-in templates also include fields for you to fill in with your information and that of your potential employer. They guide you in these small ways, some even providing a sample for your letter’s main body. It’s a good idea to rephrase that, though, to fit each job application.

If you don’t like any of the options on Word’s desktop app, explore more Microsoft cover letter templates online and download your favorites from there.

Use Third-Party Templates in Microsoft Word

You can create cover letters for your dream job on platforms besides Microsoft. If you’d rather stick with it, you’ll even come across third-party templates specifically designed for you to download and customize on Word. Here are some examples.

1. ResumeLab

Explore over 50 cover letter templates, ranging from minimalist to eye-catching designs. Keep in mind that a few of them are meant to be created on ResumeLab. The rest you can bring onto Word by clicking their Download it free here link.

You’ll be redirected to websites like Good Resume and Resume Genius , which help you quickly download your documents. Then, all you have to do is open them in Microsoft Word.

You’ll also notice that some cover letters on ResumeLab are edited versions of Word’s built-in templates, but this just adds to your selection and gives you more ideas.

2. Template.net

This is a popular site for templates of all kinds, including cover letters. For some designs, you pay a small fee, but Template.net has an impressive range of free options, too. What’s more, the download process is very easy.

Just browse its collection, click on a design you like, and select the Word button under Download Free Template . In the next window, hit Free Download . If you’re not signed in already, you’ll be asked to as the final step.

Follow Best Practices for Cover Letters

Familiarize yourself with the dos and don’ts of writing a cover letter . Remember these guidelines when selecting and customizing a template or crafting a cover letter from scratch. They boil down to the following rules.

1. Research Potential Employers

Do your research before writing or designing your cover letter. Get to know each company and even the recruiter you’re addressing. It’s the same strategy as tailoring your resume for different job types .

2. Tailor Your Cover Letter

When showcasing your skills and interest in a position, use your research to tailor your letter so that it grabs the recruiter’s attention and impresses them. Be smart, enthusiastic, and concise with your words.

3. Use Your Blank Space Wisely

Aim to limit your cover letter to one page. Any more than that, and you risk losing the recruiter’s interest. Think about what you need to say, including important and relevant details not covered in your resume. Express these things as succinctly as possible.

4. Your Visuals Should Complement and Not Overwhelm the Letter

Add a bit of color and texture, going for a subtle effect. You could even use some small icons, as long as they’re tasteful and discreet. Whatever you choose, keep these visuals on the letter’s edges, and don’t let them dominate the text.

5. Master Word’s Features That Benefit Cover Letters

For example, you can create your cover letter more efficiently by setting the text’s boundaries from the get-go. To do this, go to Layout > Margins . From the same toolbar, you can adjust paragraph spacing and indentation.

Through Insert > Pictures , you can import an image of your signature and place it at the end of the letter. Your header and footer can be customized from here, too.

Even the Mailing toolbar might be of interest. It can help streamline the process of writing and sending letters, as well as keeping track of recipients.

Good Planning and Wording Make the Best Cover Letters

Between Microsoft and other providers, you have access to a wide selection of templates for simple but attractive cover letters that you can personalize on Word. The app itself is full of useful writing and editing tools.

With this leg up, designing a cover letter for every occasion is easier. Sound research and planning in terms of how to approach each application can help polish the letter even more.


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  6. Cover Letter Template Student

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  1. Student Cover Letters With Template and Example

    Indeed Editorial Team Updated June 27, 2023 A great cover letter can be the key to getting an employer's attention, especially if you are a student at the start of your career. Your student cover letter should highlight your potential, breaking down how your interests and life experience have prepared you to be an ideal candidate in your field.

  2. How To Write a College Student Cover Letter (With Template)

    You can follow these steps to write your college student cover letter: 1. Do some research Start by finding out what the employer is looking for. Read the job description carefully to identify the qualities the employer wants in a candidate. Among your set of skills, write down the ones that are relevant for the position.

  3. How To Write a Student Cover Letter (With Examples and Tips)

    1. Study the position description Study the description of the job, internship, scholarship, or program you're applying for so you can tailor your cover letter to it. Note important details, including: The name of the position The requirements to apply The qualifications of an ideal candidate The responsibilities of the role

  4. How To Write A College Student Cover Letter (With Examples)

    When writing a cover letter as a college student, you should start by greeting the recipient of the letter by name and give an achievement-driven introduction. The formatting for both a resume and a cover letter is quite similar. Here is an overview of how to lay out your letter: Add your contact information in a header.

  5. College Student Cover Letter Sample

    Dear [Mr./Mrs./Ms.] [Manager's Name], My name is [Name] and I'm pleased to be applying for the position of [Position] at [Company Name]. I was ecstatic to find this opening at [Website/Job Board] and feel that my skills and studies make me a perfect fit for the role.

  6. How To Write a Student Cover Letter (With Examples)

    1. Do your research Before you start writing the cover letter, do some research into the company that posted the job advertisement. Sometimes a recruiting company posts these job listings, so make sure you're aware of the company that you're actually applying to work at.

  7. Student Cover Letter Examples & Expert tips [Free] · Resume.io

    Use this Student cover letter example to finish your application and get hired fast - no frustration, no guesswork. This cover letter example is specifically designed for Student positions in 2023. Take advantage of our sample sentences + expert guides to download the perfect cover letter in just minutes. 4.7.

  8. College Student Cover Letter Example & Writing Guide

    Yes! They do. But no worries, we'll help you write a college student cover letter that proves you're a great candidate. This guide will show you: A college student cover letter example better than 9 of 10 others. Best tips on how to write a college student cover letter step-by-step.

  9. Cover Letter Examples for Students and Recent Graduates

    How to Write a Cover Letter Cover Letter Format and Presentation Tips By Alison Doyle Updated on 10/14/21 If you're a student or a new grad, you may not have much experience in the workforce. This can make building a resume and writing a cover letter challenging.

  10. Cover Letter Tips for Students and Recent Grads

    How to Write a Cover Letter: 7 Essential Tips. 1. Address Your Letter to a Specific Person. The job search can feel anonymous, especially if you submit an online application, but it's crucial you make a good first impression by addressing your cover letter to the specific recruiter or hiring manager.

  11. How To Write a College Application Cover Letter (With Template)

    1. Write your name and street address. At the top of your cover letter, write your first and last name. On a separate line include your street address, followed by your city, state and zip code on another line. 2. Include the date. Below your contact information, write the date you plan on sending the cover letter.

  12. Cover Letter Writing Guide 2023: Examples and Tips

    I'm writing to express my interest in the position of [position name] at [company name]. I'm certain that my level of knowledge fits well with the obligations described in your job description since I have over six years of experience operating the [specified niche].

  13. How to write a great cover letter

    These are the best ways to write a cover letter: Research the company and industry Just as you would do if you were preparing for a job interview, you should thoroughly research the company and the role before writing your cover letter. What exactly will you be doing? What's the company's vision? Who are their competitors?

  14. How To Write a Cover Letter (With Examples and Tips)

    If it's a specific person, address them by name and title. If not, consider addressing the cover letter to "Dear Hiring Manager " or "Dear Human Resources." Your cover letter is your chance to share your story, personality and strengths. Don't forego a cover letter in your rush to submit an application.

  15. 3 College Student Cover Letter Examples Working in 2023

    As a college student or recent grad, you may have limited work experience, making a cover letter feel challenging. However, with the right planning and use of your academic knowledge, you can write an effective cover letter that stands out. The first step is reviewing the job description and picking out job skills that each company emphasizes ...

  16. High School Student Cover Letter

    Dear Mr. Hart, My name is Daria, and I am a graduating senior at Heritage High School. I saw your posting for the position of Business Development Intern on Indeed, and was immediately compelled to apply. My academic and career goals align with the internship's stated objectives, and I am confident that I have the right skills for the job.

  17. 3 Student cover letter examples [Get the job]

    Hi [insert recruiter name] Hi [insert department/team name] Avoid old-fashioned greetings like "Dear sir/madam " unless applying to very formal companies. How to find the contact's name? Addressing the recruitment contact by name is an excellent way to start building a strong relationship.

  18. Academic Cover Letters

    At their most basic level, academic cover letters accomplish three things: one, they express your interest in the job; two, they provide a brief synopsis of your research and teaching; and three, they summarize your past experiences and achievements to illustrate your competence for the job. For early-career scholars, cover letters are ...

  19. Tips for a First-Job Cover Letter for High School Students

    Indeed Editorial Team Updated July 7, 2023 As you are preparing to find your first job, you can create a cover letter for each job application. Your cover letter should inspire the hiring manager to schedule an interview by showing how you are a great fit for the job.

  20. How to Write a Cover Letter for Students

    How to Write a Cover Letter for Students Get advice about how to make a cover letter for students, including cover letter examples for high school students and cover letter tips for teens. By Lisa Jackson · July 20, 2022 · 11 minutes read You've found a dream job posting and worked hard to create a polished resume.

  21. Cover Letter Example For College Student

    In this writing video, I'll show you how to write the perfect cover letter for a college student. The main purpose of this tutorial is to get you noticed by ...

  22. How To Write a Cover Letter for a Student Teacher (With Tips and

    1. Name the position you're applying for In the opening paragraph of your cover letter, it's a good idea to name the specific position that you're applying for and what school you're applying to. This can help contextualize your letter as the school's hiring manager reviews your materials.

  23. Cover Letter for a High School Student (With Examples)

    1. Include your personal details The first step is to put your personal details and contact information at the top of the cover letter. It's a good idea to make this section clear and easy to read. This ensures the hiring manager has your contact information. For an emailed cover letter, include your email address, phone number and full name.

  24. How to Create a Compelling Cover Letter in Microsoft Word

    Use Microsoft Word's Cover Letter Templates. Formal letters don't have to be bland. Go to File > More templates on Word, and type "cover letter" in the search box. You'll find several stylish designs that add structure and color to your document.

  25. How to write a professional cover letter

    The header should include your name, city, ZIP code, phone number, and email address. Then, you can list the name or title of the recipient as well as the company name. If you format your cover letter and attach it to your application, center your name and contact information at the top.

  26. Public Works: Writing Cover Letters for Public Humanities Positions

    In Part 1 (held on Nov. 13, 2023), students discussed sample job descriptions, unpacked strategies for translating academic experience to non-academic positions, and reviewed approaches for writing clear and effective cover letters. Students had the opportunity to practice identifying key language in postings, review a sample cover letter, and ...

  27. CRediT author statement

    CRediT author statement. CRediT (Contributor Roles Taxonomy) was introduced with the intention of recognizing individual author contributions, reducing authorship disputes and facilitating collaboration. The idea came about following a 2012 collaborative workshop led by Harvard University and the Wellcome Trust, with input from researchers, the ...

  28. How To Write a Student Cover Letter (With Examples and Tips)

    Here are some steps for how to write a student cover letter: 1. Study the position description. Study the description of the job, internship, scholarship, or program you're applying for so you can tailor your cover letter to it. Note important details, including: The name of the position. The requirements to apply.