Workshop Wednesday – October 3, 2012

Each Wednesday I randomly select a cover letter sent in by sports job seekers and critique the letter. If you want to know more about how it works or how to send in your cover letter, see this post.

I have left comments open, but I will only approve comments with respectful questions or comments.

Please note, names and companies have been changed to protect anonymity. This person is applying for an internship with a professional sports league.

Dear [Jane Doe]:

Please accept this cover letter as my formal request to be considered for the [pro league program] internship program. My interest started by serving as captain of the [pro league program] team at [State University]. My interest was furthered when I heard about this opportunity through the [pro league program] forum and further contact with you.

I like the first paragraph. I get a real sense that you’re dialed into this particular program the league sponsors. It also sounds like you’ve already spoken with the person to whom the letter is addressed. Always good to remind someone if you’ve spoken with them.

I believe I am qualified for the [pro league program] internship due to my immense experience on campus and in the sports field. As mentioned, I served as team captain of the [State University] team in which my team became the first to host their viewing party at a [pro league venue]. Through this program I have developed the skills to create a social media plan, marketing plan, and promotional plan.

I liked where this was going… but then it was like the train came to a sudden halt. For example, it was really taking off when I got to the last sentence of the previous paragraph, and then I realized you weren’t going to show me how you developed those skills. Go into some detail on the plans you created.

Enclosed is my resume, which details my vast experience both on the campus of Southern New Hampshire University and in the sports field. I have a variety of sport experience that has provided me with knowledge of the field. Throughout these experiences I have worked and interacted with college students and people of all ages, which is an essential skill for this position.

You could lose this entire last paragraph, as it’s way too generic. Instead, use this space to expand on the skills you mentioned at the end of the previous paragraph.

My extensive work with college students paired with my vast experience working in the sport field qualifies me for this position. I am confident that I will exceed the high expectations that are necessary for this internship.

This paragraph is fine, but not absolutely necessary. You could cut it if you needed more space to expand on how you gained your skills.

Thank you for your time and consideration for this internship. Please feel free to contact me with any questions through phone at [phone number] or by email at [email address]. Thank you and I look forward to hearing from you.

John Doe

The biggest problem here is telling instead of showing, which is the number one issue I see in cover letters. Check out my post on how to show and not tell, with real cover letter examples.


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