Customize your cover letter

While your resumé speaks volumes about your knowledge and experience, your cover letter shows who you are as a person—and makes a strong case for why an employer should hire you instead of anyone else. Connecting those dots can mean the difference between landing an interview and getting lost in the crowd. 

What you need to know

  • A good cover letter starts with good research. Knowing your potential employer's goals and needs can match your skills and experience more effectively. 
  • It's important to communicate clearly and briefly—but don't be afraid to show passion for the job you want. If you feel the job was tailor-made for you, say so and why. 
  • Focus on solving the employer's needs rather than simply touting your own experience. 

Common questions

Go beyond simply reading the company's website or LinkedIn page. D'Amore-McKim graduate students can access industry reports, press releases, and more for their company of interest through the Global Talent System, our online hub for all things job-related. Some example sources you'll want to search: 

Stick to three paragraphs on one page. The first paragraph should state your main purpose and why you're interested in this particular company and position. The second should make a case for why you're a strong candidate—be sure to frame your experiences and skills in terms of what the company needs. Finally, close with a third paragraph that restates your interest, expresses appreciation for the reader's time, and suggests next steps. 

Use clear, plain language to engage the reader and make your message memorable. Offer specifics about why you're right for the job, but don't clutter your message with unnecessary detail. And remember to put the needs of your potential employer first. 

Helpful resources

Get to know your potential employer 

Uncover a wealth of background information about the job you're seeking—from the company's business forecasts to its top competitors—via the Global Talent System, our online hub for employment opportunities. 
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