Applying for Jobs
Employers on average spend 10 seconds reviewing application materials — Make it count.
Whether you are applying for an internship, summer job, or full-time position, you need application materials that speak to you and your skills. Career services can help you construct application materials that are tailored to your individual needs and career ambitions including: resumes, curriculum vitae, cover letters, and interviewing.
Once you have a rough draft document, schedule an appointment with a member of the career services staff to review, fine-tune, and ensure you have employment-ready application materials.
Have a great resume and cover letter, but nowhere to send it? Check out the student and alumni job site for job web sites and information.
What is a resume? A resume is a structured, tailored document that provides a snapshot of your experience, whether it be work, volunteer, research, project-based, or co-curricular, that can be used in application for an internship, job, volunteer opportunity, scholarship, etc.
- One-page in length
- Tailored to employer needs
- Utilize action verbs to begin each statement
- Avoid using the word “I”
- Snapshot of your experience, which can include jobs, internships, volunteering, research, projects, athletics, co-curricular, and so much more
- Resume Example 1: Soon-to-be E&H graduate with some related experience (internship)
- Resume Example 2: Sophomore E&H student planning to apply for an internship
- Resume Guide Link: Powered by The Campus Career Coach.com
- Federal Resume: Video: Writing your federal resume [USAJobs.gov]
What is a curriculum vitae (CV) and how is it different from a resume? CV’s tend to be more thorough than resumes and because they are most often used in graduate school applications and higher education job searches will focus more on your academic endeavors such as research, projects, scholarship, and other related educational experiences. Where a resume is typically one-page, a CV can be any length, and a typical CV for a soon-to-be graduate will be two to three pages in length. A CV for a seasoned professional can be up to 15 pages in length.
Curriculum Vitae Example:
- Curriculum Vitae Example: Soon-to-be E&H graduate
- Curriculum Vitae Guide Link: Courtesy of Virginia Tech Career Services
You will find that most applications whether for a job, scholarship, or internship will ask that you include a cover letter, but what is a cover letter? A cover letter is an introduction to you, your resume, and why you are applying. It is not a restating of your resume, but rather your opportunity to highlight specific skills or experience that you are bringing to the opportunity for which you are applying. Why is it called a cover letter? Well, before the age of e-mail and online applications, applications (including resumes and cover letters) were submitted via “snail mail,” and the cover letter typically was presented before the resume and thus was a letter that “covered” the resume.
Cover Letter Basics:
- One-page in length especially for a soon-to-be graduate
- Tailored to opportunity applied for, for example, if you are applying for a job that is seeking specific qualifications, you highlight those qualifications in the cover letter
- Should be in business letter format. See this link for cover letter as a business letter basics
Cover letter Examples:
- Cover Letter Example 1: Soon-to-be E&H graduate with some related experience (internship)
- Cover Letter Example 2: Sophomore E&H student planning to apply for an internship
- Student Employment E-mail Cover Letter Example: E&H student applying for an on-campus student employment opportunity
- Cover Letter Guide Link: Powered by The Campus Career Coach.com
In most cases, you do not have a second chance to make a first impression and this is especially true when it comes to interviewing! One of the most important things you can do before an interview is to prepare.
Interviewing Basics: How to Prepare
- Research the organization before the interview paying close attention to new initiatives, mission statement, products/services, and vision
- Practice answers to common interview questions
- Plan your interview attire
- Interviewing Guide Link: Powered by The Campus Career Coach.com
Mock Interview Program
Do not use your first official interview as a practice interview! Utilize the mock interview program as a practice interview. Schedule a mock interview with the career services staff. When you schedule your mock interview you will be asked to provide a resume and information on the type of opportunity you plan to apply/interview for. On the day of the mock interview you will dress in interview attire so as to practice all facets of an interview. You will be asked multiple interview questions and will be provided a review, including areas for improvement, of your interview at the end of the appointment.
Thank You Notes
Let’s not let the art of saying thank you die, and more specifically the art of thank you notes. A thank you note (or e-mail) should be written anytime someone has assisted you with your application process from serving as a reference to providing an interview. For more information on thank you note how to’s and benefits, see the linked blog entitled “Are Post Interivew Thank You Notes Still a Thing?”