Career Services

How to Write a Resume and Cover Letter

Students Sitting Applying for a job could require several different documents that reflect your experiences past and present. Every career industry has a unique set of application documents although most of them consist of a resume/ CV (curriculum vitae), cover letter (professional statement, Letter of Interest), and references. Below is a guild to developed each category of application documents. Begin by following the steps below then scheduling an appointment with a career consultant or stopping by our Career Studio. 

RESUMES AND CVs 

A resume is a concise (one to two page) summary of the relevant knowledge, skills, and abilities that you bring to a position based on your previous experience and education. Your resume is not just a listing of everything you’ve done, but rather a way to highlight the valuable assets you can bring to a position and organization. As such, you will want to tailor your resume to each position you apply for paying special attention to the things the employer is looking for in their job posting. Sometimes you’ll see a request for a CV (curriculum vitae); particularly for academic and sometimes health care positions. There are two differences between resumes and CVs. Resumes typically are 1 to 2 pages while CVs are unlimited in length and resumes should only include directly relevant information to the position a person is applying to while CVs are a more extensive listing including things such as publications, conferences, and research that may not be included on a resume.

  1. Download  and complete the Resume/CV Brainstorming worksheet
  2. Use your completed Resume/CV Brainstorming worksheet and the following three tools to compose your resume
  3. Visit the Career Studio or make an appointment to have your resume reviewed by a Career Consultant.

COVER LETTERS 

You should include a cover letter with every resume that you send to an employer. A cover letter’s purpose is to act as a preview of what the reader will see in your resume and, more importantly, match your experience with the qualifications that the employer is seeking. Be sure to not simply summarize your resume but rather focus on one or two requirements of the position and give specific examples from your background where you have acquired and demonstrated those skills. Your goal is to match yourself to the position and allow the reader a glimpse into you actually performing some essential functions of the job. Like a resume, a cover letter should be concise (no more than one page) and should be tailored specifically to each job you apply to.

Cover Letter Tips Sheet

Need someone to review your cover letter?  Visit the Career Studio or make an appointment to have your resume reviewed by a Career Consultant

REFERENCE PAGE 

A Reference Page is a list of contacts who can provide information about you and your skills to a potential employer. Employers value references because they can get a third-party opinion on the value you’ll bring to their team. Checking references may be the final step a potential employer takes before offering you a job. Therefore, preparing a list of people who can vouch for your work is crucial when looking for new opportunities.

Reference Page Tips Sheet

Need someone to review your reference page?  Visit the Career Studio or make an appointment to have your resume reviewed by a Career Consultant

EXTRA RESOURCES 

Resume Brainstorming Worksheet

Gathering all the needed content is an important first step in writing your resume/CV. This Resume Brainstorming Worksheet will help you gather information about your education, experiences, and skills to assist you in formulating your resume/CV.

Resume Tips Sheet

With so many different samples out there, figuring out the best way to construct your resume can be difficult. This Resume Tips Sheet provides suggested formatting for a resume along with guides and tips for each section. A basic sample resume is also provided to see how it all comes together.

Action Verbs List

Using action verbs in your resume makes it easier for readers to find and understand your skills, accomplishments, and responsibilities. Each of your bullet points should start with an action verb to make them concise and powerful. This Action Verbs Handout can help you brainstorm some of the skills and qualifications you possess and want to highlight.

Resume Checklist

Although format and design may vary between industries and personal preference, there are a few standard requirements for your resume which should not be overlooked. Use this Resume Checklist to make sure you haven’t made any common resume errors that would negatively impact your application.

Cover Letter Tips Sheet
It is a popular belief that writing a cover letter is tough and it's basically your resume in paragraph form. This idea is far from the truth. Cover letters should focus on your skill that matches what the employer states in the job description. Check out this tip sheet to find out how easy writing a cover letter can be.

Effective Bullet Point Writing

Bullet points should be clear and concise, highlighting your skills and accomplishments. This Effective Bullet Point Writing handout will show you a simple formula to use when writing bullet points helping you focus on your related skills and grab the reader's attention.

 

Last Updated: 7/17/20