A Few Letters Covering Getting Your Cover Letter Covered

Writing career advice to kids my own age is slightly uncomfortable. I still attend UVM. And, like most of you, I haven’t “officially” begun my career. So giving advice to people on my level might be deemed pretentious and unauthorized. The reason I write about the contents of a successful cover letter, however, is because I spend exceedingly large amounts of time obsessing about my post-graduate existence. If I don’t acquire a job upon graduation, my Cynic articles will prove foolish and illegitimate. But for now, let’s just roll with it. A cover letter is a formal letter that should accompany each resume you send to a prospective employer. The cover letter serves primarily as an introduction, explaining who you are and why you are sending your resume. UVM’s Career Services website states that a well-written cover letter will serve to enhance your resume by providing a more detailed description of skills and experiences in your background that relate to the organization or the position you are seeking. A cover letter is a great opportunity for you to specify exactly what you want. Writing to a company in October could mean that you’re looking for a part-time winter job, an internship in the spring, or even a full-time position when you graduate. Specifying exactly what type of affiliation you’d like with the company is, consequently, crucial. Your cover letter should explain how you learned about the position or the organization. Online advertisements, professors, or search engines are all common examples. Furthermore, if someone in particular suggested that you write to the company, you should include that person’s name and affiliation. Your cover letter should call attention to your background (education, experience, activities) that is relevant to the position you want. Essentially, you are selling yourself to a company’s HR department…so you should convince them that you’re the exact candidate they’ve been looking for. Also, be sure your cover letter reflects your enthusiasm, personality, motivation, and positive attitude. These attributes are part of what make an exceptional applicant. I have two final suggestions. First, provide any specifically requested information. This could include availability, previous experience, or an attached writing/research sample. Forgetting this detail could cost you the job. Secondly, conclude your letter by ensuring you’ve convinced your reader to look at your resume. Your resume should include a detailed explanation of who you are and where you’ve been.