Career Services

career services

Cover Letter Format

There are a few acceptable business letter formats for cover letters; the full block format where everything is aligned to the left appears below.

Your street address (If using personal letterhead, start with date.)
Your city, state and zip

Today's date

Name of person you are writing to, title
Name of organization, school district, or business
Organization street address/P.O. Box
Organization city, state and zip

Dear Mr./Ms./Dr. Last Name of Person You Are Writing To:

In the first paragraph, you will let the reader know why you are writing and establish a point of contact. You may add a sentence or two about your interest in this specific position and about how your qualifications match the requirements for this position. Express enthusiasm about the position, organization, mission, and/or community.  Some writers try to have an attention-getting opening in this paragraph.

In the second paragraph, you will likely highlight a few of the most salient points from your enclosed resume. You will likely refer to the requirements outlined in the job posting and explain how your education and experiences address those requirements. While you don't repeat your resume in this paragraph, you may add depth to certain experiences outlined on the resume. This paragraph offers you the opportunity to explain why you are a nearly perfect fit for this position in this organization. Focus on how you can contribute to the organization.  Some writers use two paragraphs to address this information.

This is the can-we-talk paragraph. For most positions, politely request an interview at the employer's convenience. Indicate what supplementary material is enclosed or being sent under separate cover. Remind the readers about how to contact you, and thank them for their consideration.


Your name (it's handwritten above- legibly and in black ink)