Motivation Letter Writing Guide + Examples for 2023
Writing a motivational letter can be nerve-wracking.
When presented with the question of “Why would you like to be part of this organization?” you find yourself staring at a blank page, thinking of how to correctly word “ I'm passionate about going to college so I don’t starve to death. ”
Two hours and three coffees in, you’ve scrolled through your Facebook newsfeed (twice), watched one episode of the last season of Game of Thrones, sent angry tweets to its creators, and donated for the knee surgery of two dogs. You go back to your open Word doc and you have only managed to write: “This organization seems like fun” or “I’ll totally be a great fit” .
You know you are not this generic or basic. You’re a capable guy or gal who has a lot to offer and there are genuine reasons behind your decision to apply.
It’s just hard to put it into words… And we get that!
In this guide, we’ll walk you through the process of creating a motivation letter that gets you accepted anywhere.
- What a Motivational Letter Is (And Why It Matters)
How to Structure a Motivational Letter
- How to Write a Motivational Letter [+Some Helpful Tips to Get Those Ideas Out of Your Head and Into the Paper]
- How (and Why) to Create a Motivational Letter With Novorésumé
What is a Motivational Letter and Why it Matters?
A motivational letter is a one-page letter that’s used to describe why you are the perfect candidate for a certain position . It is usually attached to your resume .
You are required to write a motivational letter in these 4 specific scenarios...
- You are applying to get admitted to an educational program at a college or university (undergraduate, graduate, or postgraduate).
- You are applying to work at a non-profit organization.
- You are applying as a volunteer in an organization.
- You’re applying for an internship in a company.
The motivational letter shouldn’t be confused with a cover letter , the purpose of which is to highlight how specific information on your resume matches a job opening. Think of a cover letter as the introduction to your resume for a hiring manager and your motivational letter as the powerful closing sales pitch for a university or non-profit.
So why exactly does the motivational letter matter? You’re a doer more than a talker: you’ve listed everything there is to know about you on your resume. That should be enough, right? Wrong!
All organizations are looking for people who genuinely want to be there and are excited about what they do. The intent should be your driving motivation!
Writing a good motivational letter can be an absolute game-changer. It can provide a boost for your resume , but also make up for lacking required skills.
A good motivational letter is a one-pager where you introduce yourself, your story, and show your interest in the position or organization you are applying to.
There are two main ways to structure your motivational letter:
- Using the classic 3 main paragraphs structure , where your motivational letter has the introduction, the body, and the conclusion.
- Using the 5-7 paragraph structure , where you divide your main body paragraph into smaller 1-3 sentence paragraphs according to the main points.
Now, which one do YOU go for? The rule of thumb is if you want to be more factual and to the point, go for the 7-paragraph structure. This way, you can use each body paragraph to discuss specific achievements or points.
If, on the other hand, you’re going for a more story-telling approach, you’d go for the 3 paragraph option, so as not to break the flow of the story.
The Structure of a Motivational Letter
Whichever structure you go for, it should consist of 3 main parts: the introduction, body, and conclusion. Here’s what to include in each one:
Introduction: A short, engaging pitch about yourself and why you are applying. Here, you can include:
- Personal information. Who are you and what do you do?
- What are you applying for? Where?
- An intro to the bulk of your essay. Mention the general reason on why you’re applying, and then deep-dive in the bulk of your motivational letter.
And of course, don’t forget to mention contact information on top.
To: School/Organization Name
First Name Last Name
Relevant Social Media (LinkedIn, Quora, GitHub, etc.)
Dear [Name of The Contact Person] ,
My name is [Your name] and I would like to express my interest in applying for the Doctoral program in political science at [University Name] . I’ve always dreamed of becoming a politician and helping give back to my country, and I believe that a Ph.D. in politics from [University Name] would set me miles ahead to reaching my goal.
Body of the Motivational Letter: this is the main bulk of your motivational letter. This is where you really sell yourself, mentioning stories behind your achievements, skills, and passion for whatever you’re applying for.
Try to be as factual as possible - anyone that frequently reads motivational letters can tell made-up stories from the real ones. When possible, you can also use metrics to back up your qualifications.
Things You Can Mention in Your Motivational Letter:
- My passion for ______ started when ______.
- I want to ______ because ______.
- I have been part of _________ for ___ months/years. It’s the best thing for me because _______.
- I remember once when I ________, which made me realize that I _______.
- _______ resonates with me because _________.
- What distinguishes me from my peers is __________.
I developed my passion for Online Marketing during my internship at [company name] . Working in a small startup allowed me to get surface-level experience in most digital marketing channels. Now, I would like to deep-dive and gain advanced know-how by attending the [university name] program in Digital Marketing.
Finally, you can wrap up the motivational letter and send it in. In this section, you can:
- Briefly summarize your main points - “ I believe I’d be a good fit for the program because of __________ ”
- Mention your overarching goal - “I’d love to be a part of _______, as it would allow me to ___________.”
- Thank the reader and conclude the motivational letter
Now that you know how to structure a motivational letter, let’s move on to the contents!
How to Write a Motivational Letter
So how do you write a motivational letter that stands out from the pool of applicants? The way to avoid generalizations and add depth to your motivational letter is by tailoring it to the specific organization and program/position you are applying to:
- When writing a motivational letter, you want to make sure you know what and where you are applying to. Find out who is in charge of deciding your fate and address them directly in your opening remarks as Dear Mrs. Smith .
- Look at the program requirements and the institution’s website. Find out the top three requirements for the position and explain how you are the best candidate.
- Demonstrate that you share the organization’s values or are exceptionally qualified through a short story or personal examples. Be specific.
- Your motivational letter should demonstrate that you really want to be there! There is a fine line between pleading and showing intelligent interest while also selling yourself. State specific reasons, demonstrate knowledge and express passion for applying to the institution or organization without showing off or begging.
- DO NOT LIE! If you write anything remotely untrue, your reader will sense it. Unconsciously, we inflate feelings and ideas when we lie. If you tell a fake story or inflate your excitement or achievements, you will be put into the “lying Pinnochio pile” . Consider your case rested and your application denied.
Questions to Answer in Your Motivational Letter [+Possible Answers]
- I would love to live in [ location of organization ], because ________.
- It is my dream to be part of [ name of program ], because _________.
- The values [ name of institution ] is based on are: [ three general values stated on their website ]. I have demonstrated _____ because I have ______ especially in ______. I also practice ______ in my professional or working life by __________.
- Requirement: Minimum 2 years of volunteering experience
I volunteered in Africa for three years. It’s one of my most fulfilling experiences because I am passionate about helping others and came out a better person. I would do it again in a heartbeat.
- Requirement: Passionate about research
I would pick a sleepless night conducting research instead of a night out anytime. I spend most of my mornings reading the last edition of the Journal of Marketing. I have worked on three separate research studies during my time at Colorado University.
- Requirement: 3,80 GPA
Achieving a Magna Cum Laude required a lot of hard work and dedication, but education has been my biggest passion in life, so there was more joy than pain in the process!
Answer some/all of these questions in a compelling way that’s true to you and your experience, then turn them into a cohesive text.
An Example of a Great Motivational Letter
We’ll demonstrate how to write an awesome and inspiring motivational letter through Jane’s letter to the admissions team of Harvard University below. She is applying for a Ph.D. in the department of Political Science.
The general requirements are : being research inclined, a demonstrated passion for Politics, and an above average performance during undergraduate studies.
The values of the university are integrity, education, respect, and accountability.
She’s using the three paragraph structuring method.
You can see how Jane highlights through personal stories:
- That she knows the history of the university and shares the same values
- That she’s genuinely excited and passionate about the program and the school
- What her qualifications are and how they’ll be a great fit for the program
- What she hopes to achieve if given the opportunity to study at Harvard
The same rules and spirit apply to non-university related motivational letters as well.
You can easily notice that Jane has essentially given a personal story of all his qualifications. After reading this letter, the admissions team will feel like they know Jane, and this is what you should also aim to do: communicate who you are through highlighting your story tailored to the institution and program you are applying for.
How (and why) to Create a Motivational Letter with Novorésumé
Now that you know how to write a motivational letter, you can decide on how it looks.
A black and white letter sheet with Times New Roman, 12-pt font size might be great for a formal document, but it does not make you stand out in the pile of grey applications.
How can you appear professional without being boring? Novorésumé's motivational letter templates and intuitive editor add the tinge of personality that you’d need to stand out from the rest.
So, let’s sum up everything we’ve covered in this post:
- A motivational letter is a formal letter which you need to write if you’re applying for university/college admissions, a non-profit, or a volunteering institution. Job applications usually require a cover letter instead.
- There are two ways to structure a motivational letter: in three paragraphs (introduction, body, conclusion) or in 5-7 paragraphs (where each paragraph highlights a different point).
- Introduce yourself and your intent in the introduction, describe and highlight your experiences in the body, and thank the reader for his/her consideration in the conclusion.
- Do your research, show genuine interest, and never, ever lie.
- If you want your motivational letter to stand out, Novorésumé takes the cake!
A motivational letter is always attached to a resume. Want to also make that stand out from the rest?
Read our guide on how to create an impressive resume and submit it with your awesome motivational letter to get accepted anywhere!
Our motivation letter templates are created to mirror the resume templates and CV templates , which is critical when creating a job application. Choosing the same templates, fonts, colors will improve your personal brand and increase your chances of being called for an interview.
- How to Write a Resume
- Cover Letter Examples
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- Resume Examples - Per Industry
How to Write a Motivation Letter With Examples
Have you ever heard of a motivation letter? It’s a powerful tool to help you snag that dream job and it’s becoming increasingly popular.
Let’s dive into what exactly a motivation letter is, when it’s best to use one, and how to write it. And don’t worry, we’ve got some inspiring examples to share with you too!
What Is a Motivation Letter?
So, what is a motivation letter , you ask? Well, it’s a short letter that explains why you’re the perfect fit for a job. We’re talking just one page here. It’s your chance to highlight your achievements and showcase your interests.
Typically, you’ll attach a motivation letter to your resume when you apply for a job. But that’s not all. You can use it in other situations, like applying to a college or university, an educational program, an internship, or even a volunteer role.
Now, you might be thinking, “Isn’t that what a cover letter is for?” Great question! There are indeed similarities and differences between these two documents. We’ll break it down for you in just a bit.
Motivation Letter vs. Cover Letter
Now, let’s talk about cover letters and motivation letters. They might seem pretty similar at first glance—both are 1 page or less and go along with your resume and application. Their goal? To impress the hiring manager and make them seriously consider your application.
But here’s the scoop: there’s one key difference between these two types of letters.
Cover letters dive into the nitty-gritty, with specific examples of how your education, skills, job experience, and achievements perfectly align with the job requirements. They concentrate on highlighting your work experience.
On the flip side, motivation letters take a broader approach . Instead of focusing on specifics, they showcase your interests, personality traits, and the reasons behind your application. They’re great when you don’t have much relevant experience to share. We’ll dig into this more in the next section.
See? Cover letters and motivation letters each have their own superpower. Let’s discover how to make the most of motivation letters for your dream job!
When to Use a Motivation Letter
As mentioned above, if you lack experience directly related to the position you want, a motivation letter can be a real game-changer. It’s perfect for those entry-level roles you’re aiming for.
1. Motivation Letter for University
Now, let’s dive into some specific situations. When it comes to applying to university, your application alone might not fully capture your passion and excitement. That’s where a motivation letter jumps in to save the day.
Use it as a platform to highlight your special connections with the university, why you’ve always dreamed of attending that specific school , or why you’d be an amazing fit for their programs. Show them the real you!
2. Motivation Letter for Job
And when it’s time to land your very first entry-level job , you might not have the work experience to boast about on your resume just yet. But don’t worry! Your enthusiasm and unique qualities can shine through in your motivation letter. It’s all about what makes you stand out from the crowd.
3. Other Times to Use Motivation Letters
Here’s something super cool: motivation letters aren’t limited to just education or employment. They can work their magic for other opportunities too. Just imagine the impact a motivational letter could have on your application for a volunteer position or an internship. It could be a total game-changer.
How to Format a Motivation Letter
The structure of a motivation letter is very important because it helps you present your ideas and showcase your desire to make a real impact in a new company.
In this section, we’ll dive into the key parts of a motivation letter: the introduction, body, and conclusion. But that’s not all! We’re also here to guide you on what to include in each section, so you can create a compelling, well-formed letter.
Introduction and Recipient Information
Starting your motivation letter with a professional salutation is the way to go. It shows that you mean business. Make sure to address the recipient by their name and title if you have that information. It adds a personal touch and shows that you’ve done your homework.
But if you don’t have the recipient’s name, don’t stress. You can use a general salutation like “Dear Sir/Madam” or “To Whom It May Concern.” It’s totally okay and still professional.
Next comes the introduction. It’s all about giving a brief introduction of yourself and stating the purpose of the letter. Are you applying for a job, internship, or scholarship? Let them know! Keep it concise and to the point.
Write a letter to tell why you want the job and what makes you good for it. Split the body into 2 or 3 paragraphs so it’s easy to read.
- Why you want the job : In the first part, tell why you want the job. Say what you like about the company and how the job fits your plans.
- What you can do : In the next part, talk about what you can do. Share things you’ve done before that show you’re right for the job. Use real examples to show your skills.
Finish your motivation letter layout by going over what you said and showing how excited you are about the job .
Let them know you’re ready to talk more and give them a way to contact you. Close your letter with words like “Sincerely” and then put your name.
A well-structured letter, with attention to detail, effectively presents your eagerness and qualifications for the position.
How to Write a Motivation Letter
If you find resume and cover letter writing, a challenge, you might feel that motivation letters are intimidating as well. The good news is, they don’t have to be!
Create a Motivation Letter Template
Now you know how a motivation letter should look. Let’s get into the details.
To know exactly how to write a motivation letter for a job application it’s really important to include all the necessary details. It should be like a regular business letter . Keep it professional and follow the usual format.
Use the steps below to show why you’re the best for the job.
- Use a template : A motivation letter template can help you write better and not miss anything.
- Your address : Put your address at the top or just above the date. Only add your street, city, state, and zip. No need for your name here.
- Date : Write the full date, like “April 6, 2023.”
- Who you’re writing to : Write the person’s title, name, and address. Make sure it’s all correct.
- Greeting : Start with “Dear” and the person’s name or title, like “Dear Mr. Smith.” Use a colon after.
- What to say : Split your letter into short parts. Start by stating the position or program you are interested in, then explain your motivations. Highlight your qualifications, skills, and relevant experiences that make you an ideal candidate. Be specific and provide examples or anecdotes that support your claims.
- End your letter : Finish with words like “Sincerely” or “Thank you.” This shows you’re thankful for their time.
- Sign it : If it’s a paper letter, leave space to sign your name. If it’s an email, you don’t need this space.
Always type your full name on the letter, whether it’s on paper or email. This shows it’s really from you and you agree with what’s written.
If you send other documents with your letter, like a resume, say so in the letter. Write something like “Enclosures: Resume, Application.”
In emails, just say you’ve added attachments below your name or in the letter.
Motivation Letter Writing Tips
You can use the following tips as a checklist to make sure your letter is the best it can be.
- Use the hiring manager’s name : If you don’t know it, look on the company’s website or call them. If you’re not sure about their gender, just use their job title or full name without “Mr.” or “Dr.”
- Don’t just repeat your resume in the letter : Instead, add the things that didn’t fit in your resume.
- Use action verbs : to make your letter lively.
- Include resume keywords . The company might pass both your resume and letter through an applicant tracking system (ATS).
- Don’t sound too eager or make things up : They’ll find out if you’re not honest.
- At the end, include why you’re right for the job and what you hope to learn. Last, ask them to contact you or say you hope to talk soon.
- Check your letter for mistakes : Use tools like Grammarly to help.
Motivation Letter Sample
Motivation letters are used for many reasons, so they can vary significantly. You can change the example in this section to fit your needs.
The motivation letter example below is about an entry-level job for Raul. He hasn’t held a paying job before, but he highlights experiences that might not be on his resume.
123 Address Street
Anywhere, USA 33333
September 10, 2022
456 Workplace Lane
Dear Mr. Smith:
As a first-generation university student, I am looking for a position that will enable me to pay my tuition while making allowances for my class schedule. When I saw your job listing for a weekend Customer Service Representative on the campus information board, I felt that we would be a perfect fit for each other’s needs.
While my on-the-job experience is limited, I have a great deal of experience in dealing with customers. Throughout my teenage years, I have helped out in the family business, a small convenience and souvenir store at the heart of a tourist district.
My duties there were often public-facing, arranging items for sale and assisting customers in finding what they needed. I always did my best to help customers leave with smiles on their faces, even going above and beyond what might be expected. This resulted in many 5-star reviews for the business on Tripadvisor and Google.
Thank you for your consideration. I’d be happy to speak with you in person or via phone to discuss the position and my qualifications further.
The following motivation letter example concerns an academic program. Sue is a high school senior seeking a summer internship after graduation. Her letter is imbued with a passion for the field as well as its relationship to her career goals.
March 1, 2023
Caribbean Coral Restoration Project
789 Coastal Road
Dear Dr. Diver,
For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to do something to help reverse the damage humans have caused to our planet. For that reason, I was thrilled to receive an invitation to apply to the Caribbean Coral Restoration Project summer program.
Though I come from a landlocked state, I received my open water scuba certification from SDI last August. Training took place in a flooded quarry in Pembroke, Kentucky. I look forward to taking my first “real” oceanic open water dive in the warm waters near your research station.
During my high school education, I have pursued as many ecological opportunities as possible. I participated in the 4-H Club’s Wildlife Judging Team for four years, twice winning regional competitions. I also keep an action camera as a constant companion, participating in citizen science projects such as iNaturalist and Cornell University’s annual bird count.
I have been accepted into State University’s biology program, beginning next fall. After obtaining a bachelor’s degree in biology, I plan to pursue my master’s in marine biology. I hope to start that part of my journey with real field experience under my belt. Please feel free to contact me if you require any further information. My application and resume are enclosed.
With the correct format and style, you can create a motivation letter that can win over any recruiter. To do so remember the key points that were addressed in this guide.
- Motivation letters can effectively be used in place of cover letters when you have little experience or are applying to a university, internship, or volunteer program.
- Use professional business letter formats.
- Address your motivations and qualifications clearly in the body of your letter.
- Express your personality, passions, and motivations.
Ensuring your letter is written in this style will boost your chances whether you’re an entry-level employee or an experienced worker.
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- Cover Letter
- How to Write a Motivation Letter in 2023 (Guide & Examples)
How to Write a Motivation Letter in 2023 (Guide & Examples)
Is your letter of motivation looking a little flat? We’ll teach you how to write a motivation letter that will inspire any recruiter to interview you.
As seen in:
If most people find writing a cover letter hard, they find writing a motivation letter nearly impossible.
Motivation letters sound odd and apply to various situations which makes it more difficult to apply specific guidelines on what they should say and how to write them.
Maybe you’ll just try to sneak past with a cover letter and hope no one notices…
Not so fast.
Motivation letters aren’t as hard as they sound and they’re simple to write once you know how. Lucky for you, we’ll tell you all the hows and whys behind a motivation letter that’ll get the hiring manager more motivated to hire you than Tony Robbins.
Want to write your cover letter fast? Use our cover letter builder. Choose from 20+ professional cover letter templates that match your resume. See actionable examples and get expert tips along the way.
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Sample Cover Letter for a Resume— See more cover letter examples and create your cover letter here .
See guides on related topics:
- What is a Cover Letter?
- What is a CV?
- What is a Resume?
- What is a Cold Call Cover Letter?
- Difference Between a Cover Letter and a CV
- Difference Between a Cover Letter and a Resume
- Difference Between a CV and a Resume
- Difference Between a Cover Letter and a Letter of Intent
- How to Spell Resume?
- How to Write a Pain Letter?
What is a Motivation Letter
A motivation letter , also called a letter of motivation, is a short one-page-long letter that explains why you’re the perfect candidate for the position by using examples of your interests and achievements. It’s usually attached to your resume when applying for a job.
A motivation letter can also be used for other situations outside the job world such as applying for an educational program at a college or university.
Due to its nature, a motivation letter is perfect for candidates applying for an internship, volunteering role, or for candidates who have little or no job experience.
So that sounds just like a cover letter or a letter of interest, right?
The difference between a motivation letter vs a cover letter is that a cover letter gives specific examples of how your job experience and skills match the opening you’re applying for. A motivation letter, on the other hand, focuses more on your personality, interests, and motives for applying. That’s what makes it such a great addition to a volunteer resume , an internship resume , a resume with no experience , or an entry-level resume.
Read more: How to Write a Cover Letter for Internship
How to Write a Motivation Letter
The best way to go about writing a motivation letter is using the three part structure that includes an introduction, body, and conclusion.
To write a motivation letter introduction that will grab your reader’s attention, use these tips:
- Add your up to date contact information in your letter heading . Include the addressee’s details as well.
- Refer to the hiring manager or point of contact by name.
- Mention what you’re applying for specifically; your reader doesn’t have time to guess what you might be interested in.
- Explain why you’re writing your letter of motivation. Think of your intro paragraph as a pitch that needs to engage the reader enough to want them to read on for more details and examples.
If you’re struggling to write a good intro paragraph, a good trick is to leave it for the end. That way, you’ll know what you’ve mentioned in your letter of motivation and can find it easier to summarize and point out in your intro paragraph.
Let’s move on to the second paragraph.
The body of your motivation letter is where you really turn it up a notch and sell your best points. Don’t just list a bunch of things you can do or have done and definitely don’t just rehash your resume if you’re applying for a job.
Here are some pointers on creating a killer second paragraph:
- Use specific examples that prove the motives and desire you expressed in the previous paragraph.
- Use action verbs to put some power behind your words.
- Include resume keywords not only to spice up your motivation letter, but also to get extra points in the ATS that the company might pass your motivation letter through.
We know that you really want in on whatever opportunity you’re applying for, but don’t make your motivation letter sound overly desperate and don’t lie to sound wonderful. Both those cases will just put your motivation letter on the fast track to the trash can.
Now the last paragraph. The conclusion of your motivation letter should nicely wrap up the rest of your letter. Here’s how to do it right:
- Mention why you’d think you’d be a great fit in the company or organization.
- Include what you’d like to learn or gain from your experience.
- Add a call to action to show that you’re really committed to the role.
So how does that all look put together? Check it out.
Motivation Letter Example
May 17, 2019
1096 Locust Street
Albany, GA 31701
3705 Shobe Lane
Albany, GA 31702
Dear Mr. Alfaro,
After watching my parents give and grow through their work in NGOs, I decided that when I was ready, I would follow in their footsteps. I was excited to hear that your organization was looking for volunteer drivers to help the elderly and others with limited mobility safely move around the city. I would very much like to become a part of Shofer Unlimited.
I was raised in the spirit that it’s more important to give than to receive, especially when we already have everything we need in life. From my freshman year in high school, I’ve volunteered during my summers as a dog walker in dog shelters as well as a teacher’s aide in daycare centers. One day, I realized how hard life can be when my grandmother could no longer move around the city by herself. When I got my driver’s license, I started driving her around to doctor appointments and for other errands. I realized then that this is something that I could do for others in the exact same situation and help them continue living a relatively normal life despite their years.
I’m a friendly and outgoing person who really enjoys spending time with others and making them smile. I’m a safe driver, I’ve had my license for 2 years and haven’t received a single ticket. I believe that I’d be a perfect fit in the Shofer Unlimited team with empathy and open-minded approach to others. I’m also convinced that Shofer Unlimited will be the perfect place for me to gain even more experience in working with different people and improving my customer service skills.
I’d love to talk over the phone with you over the next week about this position and what I could bring to the Shofer Unlimited team.
Ruth may not have much experience, but she’s explained her motivation for applying for the volunteering opportunity as well as some previous experience that she’s gathered. This is definitely a motivation letter the hiring manager won’t be tossing out.
Read more: How to Write a Cover Letter
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How to Format a Motivation Letter
Now that you have the content all squared away, you still have to make sure that your letter of motivation doesn’t look like something the cat dragged in.
When formatting your motivation letter, take the following things into consideration:
- Use a professional letter font and set it to 12 pt size.
- Set your letter spacing to 1” on all sides of the page.
- Choose a good letter layout to convey your professionalism.
- Make sure you create a professional letter file title so that recruiters can find your motivation letter right away.
- Remember to choose a letter design that suits the position you want and your own personality.
- Always proofread before sending! There’s nothing more embarrassing than getting passed over because of typos on your letter or motivation.
Read more: The Best Cover Letter Outline
Writing a letter of motivation isn’t the easiest thing in the world, but it’s definitely something you can tackle with the right approach. Just remember:
- A motivation letter is a great choice if you’re just starting your career or applying for an internship or volunteering.
- Introduce yourself with an attention grabbing pitch in the first paragraph.
- Use the second paragraph to show what you already know and have done.
- Conclude with the value you could bring and a call to action.
Thanks for reading! Do you still have any questions about a motivation letter? Drop your question down in the comments below and we’ll get back to you!
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How to Write a Motivation Letter?
- Updated on
- Oct 11, 2022
Your resume represents your qualifications, achievements as well as strengths and weaknesses . Applying merely through a resume may reflect the general academic and professional information about you but it can also be seen as the lack of influential representation of the motivation and dedication you possess. This is where a Motivation Letter comes to the rescue as it is usually asked by academic institutions as well as organizations from the applicants. Through a motivational letter, you can convincingly transmit your passion, eagerness and diligence regarding how your dream course can enlighten your career path along with the benefits you wish to bring out to the institution or organization (whether as a student or an employee). Let’s explore how to write a motivational letter with the help of samples/examples for university, job application, internship and more!
This Blog Includes:
What is a letter of motivation/motivation letter , what is the difference between a motivational letter and cover letter, how to structure your motivation letter, motivation letter template/example, introduction, motivation letter example, dos and don’ts, sample motivation letter for university, sample motivation letter for internship, sample motivation letter for scholarship application, sample motivation letter for job application, sample motivation letter for job- 2, motivation letter for study abroad.
A motivation letter describes why you are a perfect candidate for a certain program/position. It is usually a one-page document that gets attached alongside your resume. Commonly there are 4 purposes for which one is required to draft it:
- For Admission: If you are applying to a university or college to get enrolled in an educational program for any level ( undergraduate or postgraduate ).
- For Training/Internship: If you want to get into a full-time internship with an organization.
- For Employment: When you want to apply for a job profile at an organisation.
- For Jobs in Social Sector especially NGOs: Non-profit organisations generally demand motivation letter to analyse the interests and intentions of job aspirants.
Must Read: How to Write An SOP?
Often students get confused between a cover letter and a motivational letter, it is important to keep in mind that the purpose of a cover letter is to accentuate some specific information mentioned on your resume and align it with the job requirements as well as the company profile. To put it simply, a cover letter is more of an introductory letter to your resume to the hiring authority whereas a motivational letter is mainly utilised as how your interests, motivations and aspirations match the academic program you want to study or a job profile you want to apply for. All the elite organizations are in search of individuals who would prove out to be an asset to the company. Thus, it should deliver your intent and excitement using the key feature as your motivation.
Every document a university or recruiter asks for serves a special purpose. Often than not, candidates are confused between the two such documents – Cover Letter and Motivation Letter. A cover letter is a professional letter given to an employer/recruiter along with a resume or CV. Cover Letters are generally used by companies, employers and recruiters as opposed to motivation letters that are used by university admission offices, educational institutes and internships. Both letters are intended to inform the recruiter or educational officer of why you are the perfect candidate and allow candidates to explain at length about their motivation, interests, hobbies, achievements and career/academic future.
Related Read: Cover Letter for Fresher
If you are targeting your dream institution or organization, presenting your motivation in a fascinating way can be a total game-changer. Ideally, the motivation letter should be on 1 page only in which you have to introduce yourself, describe your qualifications and achievement and highlight your interests as per the course/position you are applying to. Knowing the structure of your letter is pivotal towards comprehending the key elements that you need to add. Generally, the structure of a motivation letter can be any of the following:
- Either you can opt for a traditional methodology of a 3-paragraph motivation letter wherein there will be an introductory paragraph, body of content and conclusion.
- You can also use the 5-7 paragraph structure. Where you can divide the body of the letter in pointers elucidating 1-3 sentences paragraphs.
Coming to the discussion of choosing the format, if you want to go more factual and possess a varied number of achievements, you can select the 5-7 paragraph style through which you can individually emphasise upon each achievement by framing it into a single point. On the other hand, if you prefer the storytelling method you can choose the 3 paragraph format without giving many breaks to your letter.
Related Read: Career Objective For Internship
Format of a Letter of Motivation
Now that you know the two main structures you can choose from, let’s have a look at the major inclusions in the format of motivation letter:
A crisp, engaging pitch about yourself explaining why you want to apply. Some mandatory mentions are:
- Personal details (Name, Address, Email, Profile, Work Experience if any)
- Write about the course, internship or job profile you are applying for and also mention why,
- Start by putting down the general reasons explaining why you are applying to the course, internship or job position. Afterwards, dive into the main body of it.
For Example, the introduction for a motivation letter for a PhD application at a university is given below:
Sometimes conveying your zeal to enter an academic program or an organization could not be absolutely done by a resume as it restricts you to put forward only the facts and figures instead of the inspirations and motivation that urged you to pursue it. This is where a motivation letter comes into the view to ensure that your application should shine out from the hoard of other documents. Below mentioned are some quick tips and tricks to draft your motivation letter:
- While writing the letter, make sure you know the concerned person to whom you are applying. Research about the name and designation of the concerned individual and address them accordingly.
- Gauge the requirements of the program/profile and explain how you are the right fit for it.
- Mention how your beliefs and interests align with the organisation/university’s vision and mission
Are you planning to study abroad, have a look at our blog on Sponsorship Letter for Visa
Motivation letter is written for different purpose such as for internship, job application, university etc. Now that you know about a motivation letter, you should learn about how to write one. The best way to write it is by creating a genuine letter.
This is the main body of the letter. Describe your achievements, academic and professional journey and career aspirations. Elaborate on your skills and passions elucidating your zeal for your chosen course or job profile. Keep it factual and concise. Most of the time, the made-up stories get easily caught by the professionals who examine a variety of letters every day. It is strongly advised to maintain precision in your story. To cite the authenticity of your qualifications, you can also use metrics.
Have a quick example for motivation letter at some major add ones:
- My passion for ____ began when ______.
- I aspire to _____ because ______.
- I have been a part of _____ for _____ months/years. It’s the best thing for me because of ______.
- I remember once when I______ which made me realize that I_____.
- _______ resonates with me because ______.
- What distinguishes me from my peers is _______.
Motivation Letter Example:
Finally, to conclude, you can wrap up your letter and read it thoroughly before sending. Here are some of the points to help you with the concluding paragraph of the Motivation letter.
- Summarize your major points: “ I believe that I would be an appropriate fit for the program because of _____ ”
- Mention your long term goals: “ I would be obliged to be a part of _____, as it would allow me to _____ ”
- Finally, pay regards to the reader with a ‘thank you’.
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Once you are familiarized with the structure and elements of a motivation letter, let’s provide you with a motivation letter examples and samples to help you understand the tone and style as well.
The best way to write a motivation letter to write down all your ideas, experiences and achievements align them with your future career goals and then craft a creative and thoughtful essay to impress your employers or university admissions, officer.
A motivation letter is designed to help the employer gain an insight into why you are the perfect candidate for the position. Following the proper structure, writing short sentences and talking about your experiences, skills, education is essential for a motivation letter.
‘Yours Sincerely’ or ‘Best Regards’ or ‘Thank you for your time’ are perfect sentences to end a motivation letter.
You can begin a motivation letter with Dear Sir/Madam or if you are aware of the person you are addressing then you can mention their name and designation.
Thus, we hope that this blog has familiarized you with the key features of a motivation letter with the help of examples and samples for job, internship, university and more! If you are planning to apply for an academic program abroad, our Leverage Edu experts are here to guide you throughout the admission process of your chosen university while also helping you craft impressive SOP and LOR s as well as motivation letters to ensure that you get successfully shortlisted and fulfil your dream to study abroad!
Team Leverage Edu
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Motivation Letter: How to Write & Examples in 2023
TABLE OF CONTENTS
In 2023, crafting an effective motivation letter remains a crucial skill for individuals seeking academic, professional, or personal opportunities. This article will guide you through the essential steps of composing a compelling motivation letter. From understanding its purpose to exploring practical examples, VTJ will delve into the art of conveying your aspirations, experiences, and genuine passion to achieve your goals.
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What Is A Motivation Letter?
What is a motivation letter? How to write a good motivation letter
A motivation letter is a document that accompanies your application and provides insight into your personal motivations for pursuing a particular opportunity. It serves as a platform for you to express your enthusiasm, qualifications, and goals, allowing the reader to understand why you are the ideal candidate for the position or program you are applying to. A well-written motivation letter not only highlights your relevant skills and experiences but also demonstrates your passion, commitment, and alignment with the values and objectives of the organization or institution you are targeting. It is a powerful tool that can significantly influence the decision-making process and set you apart from other applicants.
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When To Use A Motivation Letter
When To Use A Motivation Letter: A motivation letter can be used in various situations
A motivation letter can be used in various situations where you want to convey your passion, qualifications, and aspirations. Here are three common scenarios where a motivation letter is often required:
Motivation Letter For University
When applying for admission to a university or a specific program, a motivation letter allows you to showcase your academic achievements, extracurricular activities, and future goals. It provides an opportunity to explain why you are interested in the program, how it aligns with your career aspirations, and what unique qualities you can bring to the university.
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Motivation Letter For The Job
When applying for a job, a motivation letter complements your resume by providing additional context and highlighting your relevant skills and experiences. It allows you to explain why you are interested in the position, how your qualifications make you a suitable candidate, and what you can contribute to the organization. A well-crafted motivation letter can demonstrate your enthusiasm and set you apart from other applicants.
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Other Times To Use Motivation Letters
Motivation letters can also be used in various other situations, such as applying for scholarships, internships, volunteer positions, or exchange programs. These letters serve as a platform to express your motivations, goals, and how the opportunity aligns with your personal and professional development.
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How To Structure A Motivation Letter
How To Structure A Motivation Letter: There are two main approaches to structuring your motivation letter
An ideal motivation letter is a one-page document that introduces yourself, shares your story, and demonstrates your interest in the position or organization you are applying to. There are two main approaches to structuring your motivation letter:
- Classic 3-paragraph structure: This structure includes an introduction, body, and conclusion. In the introduction, you provide a brief overview of yourself and state your interest in the opportunity. The body paragraphs expand on your qualifications, experiences, and motivations. Finally, the conclusion summarizes your main points and reinforces your enthusiasm.
- 5-7 paragraph structure: This structure allows for more detailed discussion by dividing the main body paragraph into smaller 1-3 sentence paragraphs based on key points. This approach is suitable if you prefer a factual and to-the-point style, allowing you to highlight specific achievements or points.
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To ensure your motivation letter is clear, concise, and impactful, it is important to follow a well-structured format. Here is a typical structure for a motivation letter:
The Structure Of A Motivation Letter
- Contact details
- Introduction: Begin with a strong opening paragraph that grabs the reader’s attention and introduces yourself. State the purpose of the letter and the specific opportunity you are applying for.
- Body: Provide a brief overview of your educational background, relevant experiences, and skills. Highlight achievements that are directly related to the opportunity you are applying for. Explain why you are interested in the opportunity and how it aligns with your personal and professional goals. Demonstrate your enthusiasm and passion for the field or industry. Discuss how your qualifications, experiences, and skills make you a suitable candidate for the opportunity. Connect your strengths to the requirements or expectations outlined in the application.
- Conclusion: Summarize your main points and reiterate your interest in the opportunity. Express gratitude for the reader’s time and consideration.
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How To Write A Motivation Letter
How To Write A Motivation Letter
Writing a compelling motivation letter requires careful planning and attention to detail. Here are five steps to help you craft an effective motivation letter:
Write An Outline
Before you start writing your motivation letter, create an outline to organize your thoughts and structure your letter. This will serve as the foundation of your letter and help you organize your thoughts. Identify the main points you want to address, such as your goals, qualifications, and reasons for applying. Having a clear structure in mind will make the writing process smoother.
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Write An Introduction
The introduction is your chance to grab the reader’s attention from the start. Begin with a brief introduction of yourself and the purpose of your letter. Mention the specific opportunity you are applying for and express your enthusiasm for it. A well-crafted introduction sets a positive tone for the rest of the letter.
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Expand Your Outline For Your Body
In the body of your motivation letter, expand on the key points from your outline. Address why you are interested in the opportunity, what makes you a strong candidate, and how your background and experiences align with the requirements. Provide specific examples to support your claims and emphasize your passion and commitment.
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Conclude Your Motivation Letter
The conclusion of your letter should summarize your main points and reiterate your enthusiasm for the opportunity. Leave a lasting impression by highlighting how you can contribute to the organization or program. Thank the reader for considering your application and expressing your hope for a positive outcome.
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Proofread Your Motivation Letter
After writing your motivation letter, take the time to proofread it carefully. Check for any grammatical or spelling errors, and ensure that your ideas are clear and concise. It’s also a good idea to have someone else review it for feedback. A well-edited and error-free letter reflects your professionalism and attention to detail.
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Tips For Writing A Motivation Letter
To write a standout motivational letter among other applicants, it is important to avoid generalizations and add depth by tailoring it to the specific organization and program/position you are applying for. Here are some guidelines to follow:
- Research the organization and program: Before writing your motivational letter, gather information about the organization and program you are applying to. This will help you understand their values, requirements, and expectations.
- Address the decision-maker directly: In your opening remarks, address the person responsible for reviewing applications. For example, you can start with “Dear Mrs. Smith” to personalize your letter and show that you have done your homework.
- Highlight your qualifications: Identify the top three requirements for the position by carefully reviewing the program’s criteria and the institution’s website. Explain how you possess the necessary skills and experiences that make you the best candidate for the role.
- Share personal stories or examples: To demonstrate your alignment with the organization’s values or exceptional qualifications, incorporate short stories or personal examples. Be specific and provide concrete evidence of how you have exemplified these qualities in the past.
- Show genuine interest: Your motivational letter should convey your sincere desire to be a part of the organization or program. Strike a balance between expressing intelligent interest and selling yourself. State specific reasons for your interest, showcase your knowledge about the institution, and express your passion without coming across as arrogant or desperate.
- Maintain honesty: It is crucial to be truthful in your motivational letter. Avoid writing anything remotely untrue, as readers can often sense dishonesty. Lying about your experiences, achievements, or feelings will only harm your application. Stay genuine and let your true qualities shine through.
Motivation Letter Template
[Your Name] [Your Address] [City, State, ZIP Code] [Email Address] [Phone Number] [Date]
[Recipient’s Name] [Recipient’s Position] [Organization/Institution Name] [Address] [City, State, ZIP Code]
Dear [Recipient’s Name],
Introduction: State the purpose of your letter and the specific program or position you are applying for. Express your enthusiasm and interest in the opportunity.
Paragraph 1: Briefly introduce yourself and provide an overview of your educational background, relevant experiences, and skills. Highlight any achievements or accomplishments that are relevant to the program or position.
Paragraph 2: Share your personal motivation for applying to the program or organization. Explain how your interests, goals, or values align with theirs. Use specific examples or anecdotes to illustrate your motivation.
Paragraph 3: Discuss your future aspirations and how the program or position will contribute to your professional or personal development. Explain how you plan to utilize the knowledge and skills gained from the opportunity.
Conclusion: Summarize your main points and reiterate your enthusiasm for the opportunity. Express gratitude for the reader’s time and consideration. Provide your contact information and indicate your availability for further discussion or an interview.
Motivation Letter Samples
Dear Mr. David,
I am writing to express my strong interest in the multimedia design and communication degree at Seattle University. My name is Stephanie Rina, and I am currently a high school student at Seattle City High School. With a passion for computer studies and visual art, I believe that this program aligns perfectly with my career aspirations.
Aspiring to become a web designer, I am eager to delve deeper into the world of multimedia design. I believe that your course will provide me with valuable insights into the digital design process and how websites can effectively communicate visual imagery to engage consumers.
What fascinates me the most is the ability of colors and images to evoke emotions in viewers. I thoroughly enjoy experimenting with the power of color and imagery, and I believe that I possess a natural creative flair. I am confident that Seattle University will provide me with the platform to further develop my skills and enhance my design abilities.
Seattle University’s reputation for academic and sporting excellence greatly appeals to me. I admire the school’s commitment to nurturing students’ potential both inside and outside the classroom. As a socially active individual, I have actively participated in various extracurricular activities, including the school band and softball team. I believe that my diverse interests and involvement make me a well-rounded candidate for your institution.
By studying at Seattle University, I am confident that I will not only develop my aptitude for design but also have a fulfilling and enjoyable experience. I am open to embracing all the opportunities that life at Seattle University has to offer, whether it be on the sporting field or in other areas of personal growth. I am excited about the prospect of pursuing my multimedia design and communication degree at your esteemed institution.
Thank you for considering my application. Should you have any further inquiries, please do not hesitate to contact me at [email protected].
Crafting a compelling motivation letter requires a combination of sincerity, clarity, and strategic thinking. By following the guidelines and examples provided, applicants can effectively showcase their unique qualities, experiences, and aspirations. Remember, a well-written motivation letter not only demonstrates your commitment and enthusiasm but also sets you apart from other candidates. So, take the time to reflect on your goals, articulate your motivations, and present yourself in the best possible light. With a strong motivation letter, you can confidently embark on your journey towards achieving your dreams and securing the opportunities that await you.
What’s the difference between a motivation letter and a cover letter?
A cover letter is typically submitted with a job application and serves as a brief introduction to your qualifications and interest in a specific job position. It highlights relevant skills and experiences and is often more focused on how your background matches the requirements of the job. On the other hand, a motivation letter is often used for academic applications (e.g., university admissions, and scholarships) and focuses on explaining your personal motivations, goals, and reasons for applying to a specific program or institution. It delves into your aspirations and passion
Where do you submit a motivation letter?
The submission process for a motivation letter depends on the specific application requirements. It is usually submitted directly to the organization or institution to which you are applying. This can be done through an online application portal, email, or by mail, as specified in the application instructions.
Is a motivation letter a requirement?
Whether a motivation letter is a requirement depends on the application guidelines set by the institution or employer. Some academic programs, scholarships, and job positions may require a motivation letter as part of the application process. In other cases, it may be optional.
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