Résumés and Cover Letters

Producing a strong résumé and cover letter is the foundation for a successful job search. These documents are typically an employer’s first impression of you and your experience, and they play a critical role in their decision to move candidates forward in the search process.

What is a résumé?

A résumé is a brief written account of personal, educational, and professional qualifications and experiences. It includes carefully selected and organized information that shows how your past experiences are related to your future job target or goals.

RESUME WRITING GUIDE

RESUME ACTION VERBS

VIEW RESUME EXAMPLES

What is a cover letter?

A cover letter is a formal letter that introduces your skills, experience, and interest for a particular job and organization. It's meant to supplement your résumé, not repeat your qualifications. In short, the purpose is to land you an interview with the organization.

COVER LETTER WRITING GUIDE

Optimal Resume

Optimal Resume is a tool to help you format your resume. Your resume is typically an employer’s first impression of you, and it is essential to make the document neat, consistent and easy to read. Browse from a variety of layouts or start from scratch to create a document unique to you. (note: we do not recommend resume templates. Optimal Resume is a great alternative, otherwise we recommend building your résumé from scratch in a Google or Word document .)

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HOW TO USE OPTIMAL RESUME VIDEO

Get Feedback

Whether you are just getting started or would like a second pair of eyes to review your nearly finalized documents, we can help.

  1. Your first step is to visit our Virtual Resource Center to have your resume and cover letter critiqued by a trained Peer Navigator, or use their assistance while developing your documents or using Optimal Resume.
  2. Then, to improve/finalize documents, schedule a follow-up meeting with a Career Coach

For assistance with personal statements/essays, visit our Graduate School Search page.