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 Workshop Wednesday 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 a promotions coordinator position within a collegiate athletic department.
Dear Sir or Madam,
As you know, marketing is the most demanding field in collegiate athletics today, and my experience has afforded me the skills necessary to succeed in your opening of Promotions Coordinator. It’s a known fact that the [University A] has one of the premier intercollegiate athletics programs in the nation, and I would relish the opportunity to further develop my professional skills while working at a worldclass institution. It is my pleasure to submit my application for the opening, and I invite you to consider my qualifications and accomplishments.
Minor nit: it should be “world-class” in the second to last sentence.
What I don’t like about this first paragraph is that there’s a lot of brown-nosing. It should be about what you can do for them, not what a great opportunity it would be for you.
As a recent graduate with a bachelor’s degree in sport management and three years of internship experience, I demonstrate productive marketing, sales, and fan engagement experience in collegiate conferences ranging from the [X Conference] to the [Y Conference], as well as the [Z Conference]. At [University B], I am an intern doing the work of an Assistant Athletics Director! I have successfully created and executed marketing plans and group outreach as the marketing point-person for both the [University B] Women’s Basketball and the [University C] Volleyball teams, both of these being sports which [University A] seeks to elevate. If hired, I can guarantee you that [University A] teams will further raise their national profile, break attendance and revenue records, and create experiences that leave lifelong impressions in the hearts and minds of their fans, regardless of win-and-loss records.
I like the first sentence of this last paragraph. I would have put it in the first paragraph in place of some of what’s currently there.
I’m a little uneasy about you saying that you’re doing the work of an assistant athletics director as an intern, although perhaps you prove that through the next sentence. I’m not familiar enough with the job duties to make that call.
I like the confidence you show in the last sentence, although I feel like perhaps you need to back it up with examples of what you could/would do.
I look forward to discussing with you personally how my abilities can best serve [University A]’s Office of Sports Marketing.
All the best, and [reference to athletic dept slogan!
This person let me know that this letter got them an interview, but not the job. So, obviously it’s not a bad cover letter. I’ve just made a few minor suggestions. Also, I would have liked to have seen more examples of things you’ve done. You’ve got one sentence in that middle paragraph, but you could have given more.
I like how personalized this letter is with lots of references to the university and even the slogan. It shows you took time on this specific cover letter for this specific job, and you care enough to have looked into the school to know the slogan and reference specific sports.
UPDATE: Amanda made a great point in the comments section:
I would not say “As you know, marketing is the most demanding field in collegiate athletics today” because chances are good that someone outside of marketing will be involved in your hire, and chances are also good that they believe THEIR area is the most demanding field in collegiate athletics. I felt instantly insulted that they considering marketing more challenging than my job.
I skimmed right over this, but I 100% agree with Amanda.