How to Write a Cover Letter for an Internship

How to Write a Cover Letter for an Internship

Learning how to write a cover letter for an internship is very important because you will be an intern at some point of your career life. Internship is a form of professional and white collar careers job training- Internship can be compared to apprenticeship in vocational and trade jobs. However, it does not have oversight and standardization and this is why the term is open for a broad interpretation. Interns are basically university, college, high school and post-graduate students. Writing a good cover letter for an internship enables you to make a good impression while seeking internship.

How to write a cover letter for an internship that will impress the reader

Some people consider cover letters less important than resumes. Therefore, they tend to give them less attention. Nevertheless, a well-written letter can be the reason why a manager will choose you for an internship position while leaving out other equally qualified applicants- Basically, a resume communicates your experiences, accomplishments, skills and experiences. A cover letter on the other hand should explain to the manager how you will use your skills, experience, education and accomplishments to add value to their business or organization’s needs. In simple terms, the cover letter should give the manager a convincing reason that they should consider you for an internship position.

Therefore, your cover letter for an internship should answer these questions:

  • Why are you an ideal intern for the organization?
  • How are your qualifications matched to the internship in the organization?
  • What step should you take towards pursuing an internship interview?
  • Why apply for an internship now?

By answering these questions through the internship cover letter, you will enable the human resource or hiring manager to understand why they ought to consider you for an internship position in their organization.

How to write a cover letter for an internship in four simple steps

  1. Write the header

The header of an internship cover letter comprises of contact information. This gives your cover letter for an internship a professional look while ensuring that contact information can be found with ease- Also include salutation. However, if you do not know the hiring manager’s name, address the letter to “The Hiring Manager”. It is also important that you include a header in the documents that you will submit while applying for internship because this indicates professionalism while giving you a brand that will identify you to the potential employer.

  1. Write the first paragraph

The first paragraph should be the introduction of your letter. Since it is an official letter, the paragraph should give the reason for writing the letter. Let the employer know why you are sending them a cover letter at the beginning.

For instance, you can tell the employer,

“Kindly accept my internship application for the public relations assistant post that you recently posted on your website”.

Be concise, specific and clear in the in introduction. This is important because it will tell the employer what exactly you want and the right department or person that they can direct the letter to. In case you have a contact in the company, mention them in the first paragraph.

For instance,

“Ms. Beatrice, the head of the public relations department at Carescorp Consultancy, told me to mention her while applying for this internship position. My high academic qualifications and commitment coupled with my participation in different co-curricular activities and experience from previous internships make me an ideal candidate for the internship position in your organization.”

  1. Write the second paragraph

Perhaps, this is the most important part to master as you learn how to write a cover letter for an internship. In this paragraph, tell the hiring manager what you will offer the organization. This includes the skills and knowledge that you have acquired from the university or college. Also include the skills that you have acquired from volunteer work and co-curricular activities. If you have had other internships, mention how they have enhanced your competencies. Use this paragraph as a link between you and the reader or the hiring manager-

For instance, you can say,

“During my four years at the Brandeis University, I studied different public relations and communication courses. These courses equipped me with invaluable knowledge of public relations and skills that I sharpened during my previous internship. During this internship, I applied analytical skills while participating in the formulation and implementation of different public relations programs. Towards the end of the internship, I assisted the public relations director in developing and implementing a major public relations campaign for the company. This experience has developed self-confidence in me and I am certain that my skills will be helpful to your organization.”

  1. Write the last paragraph

In the last paragraph, sum up your letter while suggesting a follow-up approach. Unless the company had specified that you should not contact it or make phone calls, you should describe your preferred follow up procedure in this paragraph. A follow up is important because it enables you to determine if your documents were received. It also convinces the hiring manager that you are really interested in the internship. Your finishing should be strong and informing the hiring manager that you will make a follow up in a clear manner. Also include an attachment or enclosure in case you have other documents to attach to the cover letter-

For instance, you can say,

“Thank you in advance. I really need a chance to positively contribute to your organization while interning. I will contact you via phone call next week to discuss my application further.


Henry Patrick

Resume attached.”

However, you should be careful because there are companies that do not open attachments. If you are applying for the internship after reading an advert where the company had specified that it will not open an email attachment, do not attach it.

  1. Edit

This is an important step that you should not ignore when learning how to write a cover letter for an internship. Proofread and edit your cover letter to ensure that it is free of grammatical, spelling and typo errors. Make sure that you have not used slang, emotions or humor in your letter. Also ensure that if the advert of the internship position had specified a certain format you have used it.

After sending your cover letter, make a follow up within the time that you promised in your cover letter if the company does not contact you before then-

Tips on how to write a cover letter for an internship that will win you the internship

You want to compel the hiring manager to grant you an internship by writing the best cover letter possible. Therefore, think about the cover letter for your internship as a handshake. Make a grab that will capture the attention of the recipient and give them an unforgettable experience. Come up with a cover letter that will amplify your qualifications while impressing the hiring manager.

Follow these tips while writing the cover letter:

  • Talk to a person in the company that you are applying for internship in and then ask them if you can mention them in the cover letter.
  • Address a specific person in your cover letter. For instance, use Dear Madam or Sir rather than “To Whom It May Concern”.
  • Use a good attention grabber to start the cover letter. For instance, “I congratulate you for being ranked as one of the top-best companies to work with by Forbes Magazine. Your utter commitment to the employees is among the reasons why I would like to intern with you.” However, do not be too flowery in the other paragraphs.
  • List your skills for the position that you are applying for exhaustively. You can achieve this by listing your skills somewhere before you start writing the cover letter.
  • Use examples to tell your story. For instance, highlight your achievements with examples from your past internships or college accomplishments.
  • Never undersell yourself. For instance, do not say, “Although I might lack relevant experience…”
  • Show the employer that you will help their organization.

After writing the cover letter, include references even if the advert for the internship position did not ask for them. This demonstrates that you are responsible.

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