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Cover letter and resume writing for high school students

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  • 1. 1 Cover Letter and Resume Writing to Get You Noticed
  • 2. 2 INTRODUCTION TO Cover Letter & Resume Writing •Why it is important to have a Cover Letter •Keywords •The do’s and don'ts of a Cover Letter •Format of a Resume •What companies are looking for in their employees •What to put on Your Resume •How to word Your Resume •Ideas to help you •Tips and pointers
  • 3. WHY A COVER LETTER? A well-written cover letter distinguishes your application.
  • 4. 4 The Basics to start you off • No more than 1 page • Standard fonts, size between 10-14, single spaced • Print on Quality paper either white or off white • Make a pdf. if emailing to avoid track changes showing up • Strive for neatness and personality J O B
  • 5. 5 Some skill keywords include: wrote, planned, programmed, designed, provided, created, built, enabled, taught and trained. Some results oriented keywords include: increased, reduced, redesigned, upgraded, initiated, implemented, generated and produced. Some recognition related keywords include: honored, awarded, promoted, selected, lauded for, recognized, chosen and credited. USE KEYWORDS from the job description in your Cover Letter and Resume
  • 6. Do’s and Don’ts of writing a cover letter DON’T SEND A Cover letter with errors DO CHECK Grammar & spelling
  • 7. DON’T SEND A Generic cover letter This is not one size fits all!! DO MENTION The Job you are applying for Skills, Experiences and Qualities that would best let you STAND OUT at this job.
  • 8. 8 DON’T SEND A letter with the incorrect contact Or company DO Address it to the right person Make sure you use the right company name
  • 9. 9 DON’T USE Out dated greetings like SIR OR MADAM DO USE Dear Human Resources Manager or a woman as Ms. not Mrs.
  • 10. 10 DON’T Have it too short or too long Too short = No Enthusiasm Too long = Over bearing DO No longer than 3 to 5 paragraphs and no more than 6 lines in each one.
  • 11. 11 THINGS TO REMEMBER •Cover Letters are Important •Include Keywords •Follow the Do’s and Don’ts for Cover Letter Content Example Cover Letter Included in Backup
  • 12. 12 Basic Rules for the Resume MANY OF THE SAME RULES APPLY TO BOTH THE COVER LETTER AND RESUME • No more than 1 page • Print on Quality paper either white or off white • Standard fonts, size between 10-14 • Do not Underline, Italicize, or Script • Make a pdf. if emailing to avoid track changes showing up • Strive for neatness and personality • Do not fold or staple Resume • If you are mailing it use a large envelope
  • 13. 13 What is a RESUME? Is a brief account of one's professional or work experience and qualifications, often submitted with an employment application. By a dictionary definition
  • 14. 14 A Resume is a self portrait you paint for an employer. It is a well-structured, easy-to-read presentation of your own skills, capabilities and accomplishments. Its purpose is to intrigue a prospective employer to the point where he or she invites you for an interview.
  • 15. 15 Top 10 Employee Skills 1. Communication skills verbal, written, and listening 2. Analytical and research skills 3. Computer & Technical Literacy 4. Flexibility/Adaptability/Managing Multiple Priorities 5. Interpersonal Abilities 6. Leadership/Management 7. Multicultural Sensitivity/Awareness 8. Planning/Organizing 9. Problem-Solving/Reasoning/Creativity 10. Teamwork
  • 16. 16 Your resume should be adapted and customized for each job application. This is why it is important to know the skills that each job entails especially the one you desire. Job Categories: Life Guard Office Clerk Food Prep Stock Person Construction Child Care Lawn Service Customize Each Job Application
  • 17. 17 LIFE GUARD If you have Life guard certification CPR and AED certification Or CLERICAL If you have computer skills and have knowledge of MS Office *These skills should be stated in your resume. You are tailoring Your resume for the job. Include Your Specific Qualifications
  • 18. 18 THE TOP 10 QUALITIES EMPLOYERS SEEK 1. Communication Skills 2. Honesty 3. Technical & Computer Competency 4. Work Ethic 5. Flexibility 6. Determination and Persistence 7. Teamwork 8. Eager and willing to add their knowledge and skills 9. Problems Solving or Analytical skills 10. Loyalty These skills and qualities are so very important and should appear in your resume. Many employers will scan your resume. The software program will scan for key words / skills that pertain to the job.
  • 19. 19 A resume pulls together your education, experiences, skills,classroom accomplishments, extra-curricular activities, and volunteer work and presents them to the employer. HOW DO I GET STARTED? WHAT DO I PUT ON MY RESUME?
  • 20. 20 1.0 The Heading Your full name include middle initial At least 14 pt and bold. Full address do not abbreviate street, avenue or boulevard Your city, state, and zip. You can use state abbreviation (AL) Your telephone number home and cell But make sure your voice message is professional; E-mail address - chose an appropriate email address. 6 Main Sections of a Basic Resume William S. Smith 25 Euclid Avenue Athens, AL 35622 Home: 256-555-5555 Cell: 256-555-5432 Email: Billsmith@yahoo.com S A M P L E
  • 21. 21 2.0 JOB OBJECTIVE This states what job you are seeking. Keep it short and sweet Each resume you send out should be tailored to the job you are applying for. Seeking part-time employment in the restaurant industry. or Weekend employment at a retail store specializing in books. S A M P L E
  • 22. 22 3.0 EDUCATION Include name of school and projected graduation date. Include grade point average if greater than 3.0. Include any academic honors Include perfect attendance if applicable since this displays punctuality and reliability If you are an upcoming senior state your future plans. For example, I will be attending Calhoun Community College this fall majoring in Nursing.
  • 23. 23 SAMPLE of EDUCATION EDUCATION Madison County High School, Gurley AL High School diploma anticipated May 2014 Junior GPA 3.21 Next fall I will be attending Calhoun Community College majoring in Criminal Justice High School Awards and Recognition National Honor Society Taking College classes at Calhoun Community College Perfect Attendance Certificate 2013
  • 24. 24 4.0 WORK EXPERIENCE Non- paid internships Lawn Care Service Child care- baby sitting Elderly care (Grand Parent) Volunteering Church Groups Shadowing a career Pet Sitter
  • 25. 25 What is Work Experience? Maybe you have Volunteer Experience SAMPLES Volunteer Experience -Big Brother / Big Sister -American Cancer Society, Run For Life participant
  • 26. 26 Use Action Words to Describe Your Experience Briefly give the employer an overview of work that has taught you skills.  Use action words to describe your job duties. ACTION WORDS EXAMPLES Achieved Arranged Collected Communicated Determined Guided Influenced Handled Motivated Selected Tutored Utilized Listing Work Experience
  • 27. 27 Guidelines for Listing Work Experience Most recent first Title of position, Name of Organization, Location: City, State, Dates of employment Describe work responsibilities. Emphasis on specific skills. Also check job description on website for ideas. Pet Sitter 2004 - Present • Provide pet sitting services including dog walking, feeding and yard care. Child Care 2002 - Present • Provide child care for several families after school, weekends and during school vacations. Cashier, Big City Grocery Store, Madison, AL Sept. 2012 – Sept. 2013 •Greeted incoming patrons, offering assistance with locating items and properly using coupons •Managed cash register, handling debit, credit, check, and cash transactions •Awarded “employee of the month” three times for reliability and exceptional customer service SAMPLES
  • 28. 28 • Member of sports teams • Member of church group • Member of the Band / Choir • Boy Scouts / Girl Scouts • Clubs or youth organizations 5.0 INTERESTS / ACTIVITIES
  • 29. 29 6.0 Skills Taking a foreign language Communication skills Child caring Researching and resource skills Computer Skills SKILLS • Spanish – Beginner • Communication Skills • Experience in child care- Intermediate • Proficient with Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, and Internet S A M P L E
  • 30. 30 RESUME WRITING CHECK LIST How to ensure your resume does not get thrown out. 4 Essential Steps!
  • 31. 31 #2 Have a teacher or someone you know proof read it. #1 Grammatical and Misspelled words PLEASE do not just rely on spell check
  • 32. 32 #3 IS IT ONE PAGE? #4 DOES IT SELL YOUR ABILITIES FOR THE JOB?
  • 33. 33 •Format of a Resume •Top 10 skills employers seek •Top 10 qualities employers look for •What to put on Your Resume •How to word Your Resume •Some ideas to help you •NO grammatical or spelling errors SUMMARY POINTS TO REMEMBER Example Resume Included in Backup
  • 34. 34 First Name Last Name Address City, State, Zip Code Phone Number Cell Phone Number Email Name or Title or Human Resource Manager Company Address City, State, Zip Code Date Dear Hiring Manager, or Ms. Smith I am interested in the summer position at Super Store advertised in The Huntsville Times. I have excellent communication skills and an aptitude for customer service. My past experience as a volunteer at Huntsville Hospital made it necessary for me to focus on providing quality customer service, and also enabled me to work with all types of people. I believe that my communication skills, customer service abilities, and positive work ethic would make me an asset to your store. Thank you for your consideration. I can be reached at email address or 256-222-2222. I look forward to hearing from you soon. Sincerely, Your Signature Employer Contact Information Your Contact Info Date Greeting Introduction What you offer them What happens now and close SAMPLE
  • 35. 35 Sample William S. Smith 25 Euclid Avenue Gurley, AL 35622 Home: 256-555-5555 Cell: 256-555-5432 Email: Billsmith@yahoo.com EDUCATION Madison County High School, Gurley AL High School diploma anticipated May 2014 Junior GPA 3.81 Next fall I will be attending Calhoun Community College majoring in Criminal Justice High School Awards and Recognition National Honor Society 2012 Perfect Attendance Certificate 2013 OBJECTIVE Seeking part-time employment in the restaurant industry. EXPERIENCE Cashier, All Purpose Grocery Store, Madison, AL Sept. 2012 – Sept. 2013 •Greeted incoming patrons, offering assistance with locating items and properly using coupons •Managed cash register, handling debit, credit, check, and cash transactions •Awarded “employee of the month” three times for reliability and exceptional customer service INTEREST / ACTVITIES • Member of Madison County High School Tennis Team • Boy Scout • Piano SKILLS • Proficient with Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, and Internet • Spanish – Beginner • Experience in child care- Intermediate