Career Development Center
3rd Floor Wertz Student Center – Phone: 321-4034 – Email:firstname.lastname@example.org
Cover Letter Check List
Does your cover letter…
1. Explain why you are sending a resume.
2. Tell specifically how you learned about the position or the organization.
3. Convince the reader to look at your resume.
4. Call attention to elements of your background.
5. Reflect your attitude, motivation, enthusiasm, etc.
6. Provide or refer to any information specifically requested.
7. Indicate what you will do to follow-up
Quick tips for business correspondence, including email:
There are similar elements to job search letters, but each letter should be individually tailored and
targeted to the recipient. You know what a form letter looks like and so do employers who see
thousands of letters. And stick with good professional fonts such as Times New Roman or Arial.
Make the purpose clear:
An employer doesn’t have time to guess why you are writing! Address the purpose of the letter in the
Error-free is the key! Edit your grammar, spelling and punctuation. Wording should be clear, concise
and business-like regardless of industry. Avoid gimmicky language and text messaging codes.
Be your best formal, business-like self. Although sample cover letters can be helpful guides, avoid too
much borrowing of language from sample letters. Keep in mind that flowery language or using
complicated words won’t make you sound smarter; it will just make you sound silly.
Save a copy of every letter you send (whether by paper or email) and mark your calendar for any action
items you have such as when to call the company to follow-up.
After you write it and are ready to print…
Stick with the same quality and color paper that you use for your resume.
Laser print! If you don’t have a laser printer come to the CDC.
Folding vs. large envelopes:
A one-page cover letter and a one-page resume can be folded, but it’s a nice touch to use a larger flat
envelope so your letter and resume don’t have to be folded. If you have more documents than those
listed, use a large, flat envelope and don’t fold!
Cover Letter Template
College – Box 0000
700 College Place
Williamsport, PA 17701
September 19, 2005
Mr./Ms./Dr. FirstName LastName
Title (i.e. Marketing Director)
Name of Organization
Street or P.O. Box Address
City, State Zip Code
Dear Mr./Ms./Dr. LastName:
Opening Paragraph: State why you are writing, how you learned of the organization or position and
basic information about yourself.
2nd Paragraph: Tell why you are interested in the employer or type of work the employer does (Simply
stating that you are interested does not tell why, and can sound like a form letter). Demonstrate that
you know enough about the employer or position to relate your background to the employer or
position. Mention specific qualifications which make you a good fit for the employer’s needs. This is
an opportunity to explain in more detail relevant items in your resume. Refer to the fact that your
resume is enclosed. Mention other enclosures if such are required to apply for a position.
3rd Paragraph: Indicate that you would like the opportunity to interview for a position or to talk with
the employer to learn more about their opportunities or hiring plans. State what you will do to follow
up, such as telephone the employer within two weeks. If you will be in the employer’s location and
could offer to schedule a visit, indicate when. State that you would be glad to provide the employer
with any additional information needed. Thank the employer for her/his consideration.
Your name typed
Enclosure(s) (refers to resume, etc.)
(Note: the contents of your letter might best be arranged into four paragraphs. Consider what you need
to say and use good writing style. See the following examples for variations in organization and
Letter of application about Full-time internship opportunities
112 Main Street
Lewisburg, PA 17837
March 21, 2006
Dr. Michael Kurtz, Jr.
Principle, Bellfonte Elementary School
1205 Broad Street
Bellfonte, PA 16823
I enjoyed our conversation on March 20th at the Family and Child Development seminar on teaching young
children and appreciated your personal input about helping children attend school for the first time. This letter
is to follow up about the Fourth Grade Teacher position as discussed at the seminar. I will be completing my
Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology, with a minor in Sociology, certification in Elementary Education at
Lycoming College in May of 2006, and will be available for employment at that time.
The teacher preparation program at Lycoming College includes a half academic year of student teaching, as well
as 30 hours of observation along with 30 mandatory hours with a cooperating teacher. Last semester I taught
fourth grade. These valuable experiences have afforded me the opportunity to:
• Develop lesson plans on a wide range of topics and varying levels of academic ability.
• Observe and participate in effective classroom management approaches, assist with parent-teacher
• Work with emotionally and physically challenged students in a total inclusion program.
• Complete In-service sessions on diversity, math and reading skills, and community relations.
Through my early childhood education courses, I have had the opportunity to work in a private day care facility,
Fairfield Academy, and in Lycoming College’s Child Development Laboratory. Both these facilities are
accredited and adhere to the highest standards. At both locations, my responsibilities included leading small and
large group activities, helping with lunches and snacks, and implementing appropriate learning activities. Both
experiences also provide me with extensive exposure to the implementation of developmentally appropriate
I look forward to putting my knowledge and experience into practice in the public school system. Next week I
will be in Bellefonte area, and I plan to call you then to answer any questions that you may have. I can be
reached before then at (570) 555-5555. Thank-you for your time and consideration. I look forward to hearing
from you soon.
Letter of inquiry about internship opportunities
456 Round Hills Road
Williamsport, PA 17701
January 12, 2006
Ms. Claudia Goodall
Special Programs Assistant
893 Middle Street
Coatesville, PA 17777
Dear Ms. Goodall:
I am a junior at Lycoming College, working toward my bachelor’s degree in Sociology. I am seeking
an internship for summer 2006, and while researching opportunities in the field of criminal justice and
law, I found that your program works with court appointed male youths. I am writing to inquire about
possible internship opportunities with the Glen Mills Schools.
My work experience and coursework have supplied me with many skills and an understanding of
dealing with the adolescents, for example:
• I worked as a hotline assistant for a local intervention center, during which time, I
counseled teenagers about their personal concerns and referred them, when
necessary, to appropriate professional services for additional help.
• I have been active at my college as a resident hall assistant, which requires me to
establish rapport with fifty residents and advise them on personal matters, as well
as university policies. In addition, I developed social and educational programs
and activities each semester for up to 200 participants.
I will be in the Coatesville area during my Spring break, March 3 – March 7. I will call you next week
to see if it would be possible to meet with you in early March to discuss your program.
Thank you for your consideration.
Letter of application, after phone conversation, email version
March 14, 2006
Ms. Maryann Thompson
Director of Personnel
M and T Bank
Harrisburg, PA 24040
Dear Ms. Thompson:
As I indicated in our telephone conversation yesterday, I would like to apply for the marketing
research position you advertised in the March 12th edition of the Harrisburg Times and World News.
With my undergraduate research background, my training in business, psychology, and my work
experience, I am confident that I can make a valuable contribution to M and T Bank in this position.
In May, I will complete my Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration, with a concentration in
Marketing with a minor in Sociology from Lycoming College. As part of the requirements for this
degree, I am involved in a senior marketing research project that has given me experience interviewing
and surveying research subjects and assisting with the analysis of the data collected. I also have
completed a course in statistics and research methods.
In addition to academic work, my experience also includes working part-time as a bookkeeper in a
small independent bookstore with an annual budget of approximately $150,000. Because of the small
size of this business, I have been exposed to and participated in most aspects of managing a business,
including advertising and marketing. As the bookkeeper, I produced monthly sales reports that
allowed the owner/buyer to project seasonal inventory needs. I also assisted with the development of
ideas for special promotional events and calculated book sales proceeds after each event in order to
evaluate its success.
I am confident that the combination of my business experience and social science research training is
well-suited to the marketing research position you described. I have enclosed a copy of my resume
with additional information about my qualifications. Thank you for your consideration. I look
forward to receiving your reply.
250 Prices Fork Road
Jersey Shore, PA 17777
Letter of application, position listing found on website
September 20, 2005
Mr. William Jackson
Pfizer Pharmaceutical Corporation
13764 Jefferson Parkway
New York, NY 14588
Dear Mr. Jackson:
From your company’s website I learned about your need for a sale representative for the Pennsylvania
and Delaware areas. I am very interested in Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, and I confident that my education
and employment background are appropriate for the position.
While working toward my bachelor’s degree, I was employed as a sales representative with a cutlery
company firm. I increased my sales volume and profit margin appreciably while at Valley Farms, and
I would like to repeat that success in the pharmaceutical industry. I have a strong academic
background in biology and marketing, and I am confident that I could apply my combination of
knowledge and experience to the pharmaceutical industry. I will complete my bachelor’s degree in
Business Administration, concentration: Marketing with a minor in Biology mid-May and will be
available to begin employment in early June.
Enclosed is a copy of my resume, which more fully details my qualifications for the position.
I look forward to talking with you regarding sales opportunities with Pfizer Pharmaceuticals. Within
the next week I will contact you to confirm that you received my email and resume and to answer any
initial questions you may have, regarding my application.
Lynn A. Johnson
700 College Place
Williamsport, PA 18042
Letter of application
Lycoming College – Box 0000
700 College Place
Williamsport, PA 17701
September 19, 2005
Mr. John Wilson
Historic Annapolis Foundation
1234 Main Street
Annapolis, MD 17777
Dear Mr. Wilson:
I read in the September 15th Washington Post classified section of your need for an Archaeology
graduate for your Maryland area Archaeology sites. I will be moving to the Baltimore area upon
completion of my degrees at Lycoming College. With my study abroad experience in Rome during the
Fall semester of my senior year, I believe I am extremely qualified for your Archaeology team
The best learning experience I received while studying in Rome was interpreting the history of the area
with the objects I uncovered. After the completion of my field study, I wrote a 50 page thesis
describing what the objects uncovered in the dig meant to the particular society and how history books
mislead the educated all around the world. The two-step process you mention in your website reflects
my thesis paper; such similarity will prove to be excellence. You will see in my resume enclosed
outstanding devotion towards the clubs and activities I have joined at Lycoming College, in addition to
my passion for archaeology & History. Along with my Archaeology degree, I am pursuing a Bachelor
of Arts in History as well, both of which will be completed May of 2006.
I would welcome the opportunity to speak with you further regarding my qualifications for the dig
position in Annapolis. I will contact your office in two weeks to make sure you have received my
materials and to answer any initial questions you may have regarding my application. Thank you for
your time in reviewing my application. I look forward to speaking with you.
Letter of Application
Lycoming College, Box 0000
Williamsport, PA 17701
(570) 555- 5555
October 1, 2005
Ms. John Caldwell
Director of Human Resources
920 Milliken Road
PO Box 1927-M400
New Brunswick, NJ 81158
Dear Mr. Caldwell:
I am submitting the enclosed information in application for the position of research chemist in
the department of research and development at Summesbey Chemicals. I was able to find out about
this position when visiting your company this past summer while I was part of a summer research
program at Rutgers University. Your company’s commitment to innovation and technology as well as
its challenging environment are an excellent fit with my career goals and how I wish to begin my
I am presently a senior chemistry major and mathematics minor at Lycoming College and I will
graduate with honors in May of 2006. This past summer I was involved in a fullerene chemistry
research project at Rutgers University, specifically studying the separation, characterization and
functionalization of the endohedral metalofullerene Sc3N@C78 . I am firmly convinced that the
experience I was able to obtain in different analytical techniques as well as in the organic and physical
area would be of critical use to the current research project and development projects at Summesbey
Chemicals. Currently I am involved in an inorganic chemistry research investigating the synthesis and
characterization of new soluble transition metal selenides with phosphine ligands.
I certainly believe that my academic excellence, laboratory experience and self-motivation
would make a valuable addition to your company. Given the opportunity I would be pleased to meet
with you to discuss my qualifications. If additional information is required, please do not hesitate to
contact me by phone at (570) 555-5555 or by e-mail at email@example.com. Thank you for your
time and consideration.
Letter of Application
1100 Cherry Street
Philadelphia. PA 17777
March 25, 2006
Mr. John Jones
TurnKey Construction Company
100 Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 17755
Dear Mr. Jones:
I read in the March 24th Philadelphia Inquirer classified section of your need for a Building
Construction Project Manager for one of your Philadelphia, PA, area sites. I will be returning to the
Philadelphia area after graduation in May and believe that I have the necessary credentials for the
I have worked at various levels in the construction industry every summer since the 10th grade. As you
can see from my resume, I worked several summers as a general laborer, gradually moved up to a
carpenter, and last summer I worked as assistant construction manager on a 5 million dollar job.
In addition to this practical experience, I will complete requirements for my Business Administration
concentration: Management degree in May. I am confident that my Business Administration degree,
along with my years of construction industry experience, makes me an excellent candidate for your
available Project Manage position.
The TurnKey Construction Company, Inc. projects are familiar to me, and my aspiration is to work for
a company that has your excellent reputation. I would welcome the opportunity to speak with you
further regarding my qualifications. I will be in the Philadelphia area during the week of April 28th and
would be available to speak with you at that time. In the next week to ten days I will contact you to
answer any initial questions you may have, regarding my application.
Thank you for your consideration.
Follow-up letter to information seeking meeting; email version
23 Cherry Street
Allentown, PA 24060
November 30, 2006
Mr. James G. Webster
Smith & Associates
800 K Street, N.W., Suite 720
Washington, DC 20001-8000
Dear Mr. Webster:
Thank you so much for taking time from your busy schedule to meet with me last Tuesday. It was very
helpful to me to learn so much about the current projects of Smith & Associates and the career paths of
several of your staff. I appreciate your reviewing my portfolio and encouraging my career plans. I also
enjoyed meeting Jane Doe, and am glad to have her suggestions on how I can make the most
productive use of my last semester in college.
Based on what I learned from my visit to your firm and other research I have done, I am very
interested in being considered for employment with your firm in the future. I will be available to begin
work after I graduate in May 2006. As you saw from my portfolio, I have developed strong skills in the
area of historical documentation and this is a good match for the types of projects in which your firm
specializes. I have enclosed a copy of my resume to serve as a reminder of my background, some of
which I discussed with you when we met.
I will stay in contact with you, during the next few months in hopes that there may be an opportunity to
join your firm. Thank you again for your generous help.
Follow-up to telephone call
30 Academy Road
McElhatten, PA 17748
February 1, 2006
Ms. Jane Rodman
2300 E. Main Street
Harrisburg, PA 24060
Dear Ms. Rodman:
Thank you for talking with me on Wednesday in response to my inquiry about summer internship
possibilities in social services in the Harrisburg area. After speaking with you and another Lycoming
College alumnus whose name I obtained through Lycoming College Career Development Center, I am
much better prepared to pursue internship opportunities.
On your advice, I have updated my resume, emphasizing my recent hotline volunteer activities. A copy
is enclosed for you. I also plan to contact Deborah White as you suggested, and appreciate your giving
me her name.
Thank you for inviting me to visit your office. I will be in Harrisburg during spring break, so I will call
your office two weeks prior to see if it would be convenient to schedule a visit.
Again, thank you so much for your help and advice. I look forward to meeting with you in March.
Letter declining an offer
567 Mill Road
Williamsport, PA 17701
February 17, 2006
Dr. Sally Smith
Peoples Support for Foreign Affairs
222 West Lincoln Ave.
Washington, DC 20201-0343
Dear Dr. Smith:
Thank you very much for your telephone call and letter offering me the position of Assistant Project
Coordinator with the Peoples Support for Foreign Affairs. While I believe firmly in the mission of
your organization and appreciate the challenging opportunity you offer, I have had another offer which
I believe more closely matches my current career goals and interests. Therefore, although it was a
difficult decision, as I explained when we spoke by phone this morning, I must decline your offer. I do
appreciate all the courtesy and hospitality extended to me by your office, and I wish you well in your
In the position I have accepted with Policy Watch Dogs, I will occasionally be on Capitol Hill to attend
hearings and monitor legislation, so I hope we can get together again and talk about common interests.
Thank you for initial interview
400C Fishermen’s Creek
Williamsport, PA 17701
November 16, 2006
Ms. Glenna Robinson
Human Resources Manager
Boscov’s Department Store
20 Line Drive
Danville, PA 17821
Dear Ms. Robinson:
I enjoyed interviewing with you during your recruiting visit to Lycoming College November 15th.
The management trainee program you outlined sounds both challenging and rewarding and I look
forward to your decision concerning an on-site visit.
As mentioned during the interview, I will be graduating in December with a Bachelor’s degree in
Business Administration with a concentration in Management. Through my education and experience
I’ve gained many skills, as well as an understanding of retailing concepts and dealing with the general
public. I have worked seven years in the retail industry in various positions from Salesclerk to
Assistant Department Manager. I am confident that my education and work experience would
complement Boscov’s management trainee program.
I have enclosed a copy of my college transcript and a list of references that you requested.
Thank you again for the opportunity to interview with Boscov’s Department Store. The interview
served to reinforce my strong interest in becoming a part of your management team. I can be reached at
(570) 555-555 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org should you need additional information.
Thank you for on-site interview
170 Beaver Street
Danville, PA 24060
March 3, 2007
Ms. Patricia Jackson
Micro-One Computers and Electronics
121 Country Lane
Williamsport, PA 17777
Dear Ms. Jackson:
Thank you for the opportunity to visit with you and see your facilities last Wednesday. Both the
interview and the tour made for an exciting and complete day.
I was particularly impressed with your warehousing procedures. Mr. George was very thorough in
explaining your process to me, and I will be corresponding directly with him to express my
appreciation. Incidentally, the process you use is quite similar to one I have been researching through
an independent study this term. Perhaps I can share my final report with you and Mr. George.
The expense report you requested is enclosed.
Again, thank you for your hospitality during my visit and for all your efforts to arrange my visit.
Having seen your operation, I am all the more enthused about the career opportunity that Micro One
Computers and Electronics offer. I look forward to your decision.