SGarza.CoverLetterWritingWorkshop History

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*http://www.career.vt.edu/JobSearchGuide/CoverLetterSamples.html
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*The first thing you have to know, is what is the audience (employer, graduate committee, etc.) looking for. Once you know that all of your decisions will be based on that information.
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*Know your audience.
**The first thing you have to
know, is what is the audience (employer, graduate committee, etc.) looking for. Once you know that all of your decisions will be based on that information.
**Give them what they want. If they want a toilet cleaner, don't put that you are a sanitation engineer. It's a fancier title, but they don't want fancy. Use the same terms that are used in the job description and show how you are/can do those things.
*Understand the purpose of using a cover letter
**I tell students to think of a cover letter (and resume, for that matter) as being the same as if you were able to jump into a [=UPS=] box and mail yourself to the person making the decisions regarding who will get in (the gatekeepers). Your letter has to give that person a sense of who you are almost just as much as you would be able to show them if you were standing right in front of them.
**Two very important things to cover in a cover letter:
***Why you are giving your information to that person/group.
***Why they should pick you. Or in other words, what do you have to offer that makes you a better choice over all the others who are applying.
***And another very important role for your cover letter is to introduce the other documents that you are presenting to the person/group.
*Understand the different formats for cover letters
**The traditional formal letter format probably will never be a bad choice.
**However, don't think that if you aren't submitting your resume (and other documents) as hard copies that you don't need a cover letter.
***If you are submitting your information through an online database type of system, you can usually include a cover letter as a separate attachment, even if they don't ask for one.
***If you do not have the option to add other attachments or additional information, you can follow up with someone in the organization (personnel office, graduate office, etc.) with an email, and what you say in the email will be the same as sending a cover letter.
***If you are submitting your documents via email, you will need to decide if the cover letter should be sent as a separate attachment, or whether you should include the cover letter information in the body of the email. Either way, treat the process the same as you would if you were sending/delivering hard copy documents.
*'''Don't ever skip the opportunity to give the person/group a cover letter. It could be the very thing that sets you apart from the rest. '''
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What's most important? Content or Design?
*You can't separate the two, but I would put content as most important.
*The first thing you have to know, is what is the audience (employer, graduate committee, etc.) looking for. Once you know that all of your decisions will be based on that information.