Cover Letter

Tools to build your cover letter

A cover letter is a tool to market yourself, and most employers expect it to be submitted with your resume. Give the employer a few well-written, passionate, and relevant reasons to read your resume and interview you. This is your chance to make yourself stand out from other candidates!

Your cover letter shows that you are:

  • Qualified- include the ways you meet/exceed the requirements listed in the job posting
  • Confident- provide concrete examples of your experience, using keywords and phrases relevant to the job/industry
  • Excited- sincerely express your passion for the role and the company/organization
  • Future-focused- explain how your skills and your past experience will meet the employer's needs

A cover letter is a professional business communication, and business letter format is expected. Your formatting and style choices should be consistent with your resume. Focus on making your document easy to read and nice to look at. Unless otherwise requested by the employer, keep your cover letter to one page in length.


Contact Information

Your Name
Address City, Province

Date (month, day, and year)

Employer’s Name (or hiring manager)
Job title
Company Name

Re: Position Title (add posting number if provided)

Dear (First and Last Name of Employer and include a professional title such as Dr. or Professor if relevant),


Pro Tip: Keep the format consistent with the header of your resume


Pro Tip: Try to obtain as many of these details as possible by looking at the job posting and the company website.  If in doubt use “Hiring Committee” or “Hiring Manager” and omit the name.


Pro Tip: If you don’t have their name, use Hiring Manager or Hiring Committee.  Avoid “To Whom It May Concern” and “Sir/Madam”



  • Thank the employer for the opportunity and restate the position title in full.
  • Indicate WHO you are and WHY you want to work for this company. Remember, this is not about how you will benefit from the job. Instead, demonstrate that you have done your research by building in information about the company or position and connecting this with your own passion/interests/education.
  • Identify yourself as a Co-operative Education student.
  • Mention any referrals from the company if you have them.
  • If there are specific requirements the position request (language or citizenship) share as listed in the job posting.

ExampleAs a current student in Agriculture Biotechnology with past lab experience I am excited to express interest in the role of Harvest Intern. I bring strengths in research, data analysis, and visualization to the Agriculture and Agri-food Canada mission is to support agriculture and food and beverage processing for Canadian.   


Body of Letter 

Formula to help you match your experience to the posting

Skill/Experience (Verb) + Example + Link example back to the job posting (Result)

Example: I possess excellent written and verbal communication skills. I developed this through my experience as a camp counselor, wherein I researched and developed a science curriculum and taught this to children aged 8-12. This experience demonstrates my ability to effectively research, develop and make oral presentations as required for this position.

  • Match 2-3 key strengths, skills, and experiences that relate to what the organization is looking for and that you have listed in your resume. 
  • Your examples can come from paid and unpaid experiences as well as your academic highlights. 
  • Showcase your knowledge about the organization’s values, culture, and describe how these are similar and/or relevant to you. 
  • Assert your interest in supporting them to reach their goals.

Closing Paragraph

  • This paragraph should not exceed 2-3 sentences.
  • Thank the employer for considering your application.
  • Reassert your interest in the role
  • Request an opportunity to interview for the role.
  • End with "Sincerely," and your name below

Example:  Thank you for your time and consideration for reviewing my application. If you have any questions about it, please do not hesitate to contact me. I look forward to hearing from you and having a further discussion of my skills and strengths.