Career Planning Finding a Job Cover Letters Internship Cover Letter Examples and Writing Tips By Alison Doyle Alison Doyle Facebook Twitter Website Alison Doyle is one of the nation’s foremost career experts. learn about our editorial policies Updated on October 11, 2022 In This Article View All In This Article What To Include in a Cover Letter Tips for Writing an Internship Cover Letter Internship Cover Letter Examples Internship Cover Letter Template How To Write an Email Cover Letter Email Cover Letter Example Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Photo: Emilie Dunphy / The Balance If you are applying for an internship, you will likely have to submit a cover letter as part of your application. Your cover letter should be tailored to the specific internship for which you're applying and include examples from your work, academic, and extracurricular experiences. When writing a cover letter for an internship position, it's important to share your most relevant qualifications with the hiring manager. When you don't have much (or any) formal work experience, you can include school activities, volunteering, educational programs, and other learning experiences. Key Takeaways Take the time to write a customized cover letter for each internship you apply for, and include your most relevant qualifications for the position.When you don't have work experience, you can include academics, extracurricular activities, and volunteering.Be specific, and share examples of the skills the employer is looking for in your cover letter.Carefully proofread and edit your cover letter prior to sending it. What To Include in a Cover Letter Your cover letter should include your contact information, a greeting, the reason you're writing, why you're a qualified applicant for the position, and a closing. Contact Information: How you address the cover letter will depend on whether you are sending a printed or email cover letter and the contact information you have for the employer. In a printed letter, the contact information will be at the top of the letter. For an email, add your contact information below your typed name. Salutation: The salutation is the greeting you include at the beginning of a cover letter. For example, “Dear Hiring Manager.” Body of Letter: The body of a cover letter includes the sections where you explain why you are interested in and qualified for the job for which you are applying. This typically includes an introductory paragraph, a paragraph or two describing your qualifications, and a closing paragraph. Closing: When you're writing a cover letter or sending an email message to apply for a job, it's important to close your cover letter in a professional manner. For example, “Sincerely” or “Respectfully.” Signature: In a printed cover letter, you’ll add a written signature above your printed name. For an email cover letter, add a space after the closing and type your name. Tips for Writing an Internship Cover Letter Use Business Letter Format. Use proper business letter format when sending a cover letter by mail. Include your contact information at the top, the date, and the contact information for the employer. Be sure to provide a proper salutation, and sign your name at the bottom. If you are sending the cover letter via email, you do not have to include the contact information at the top. Instead, place this as part of your email signature at the end of your letter. Customize Your Cover Letter. It's important to write a unique cover letter for each internship for which you apply. Highlight skills and abilities you have that relate to the specific internship listing. The main emphasis of your cover letter should be convincing the reader that you will be an asset as an intern. Provide Specific Examples. If you mention that you have a particular skill or ability in your cover letter, be sure to prove this with a specific example from your past work, academic, or extracurricular experience. Add Keywords to Your Letter. One way to individualize your letter is to use keywords from the internship listing. For example, if the listing says the intern needs to have excellent “time management skills,” include an example of how you have demonstrated time management skills in the past. You'll be able to show the hiring manager that they have the skills you are seeking. Emphasize Your Academic Experience. In the letter, you can mention academic experience, if applicable. Especially if you have limited work experience, you might use examples from school to demonstrate that you have particular skills. For example, if the internship requires you to work as part of a team, provide an example of a successful team project you worked on during one of your college courses. Include Extracurricular Experiences. You can also include details about your relevant experience from extracurricular activities or volunteer work. For example, a reporter for a college newspaper can point to interviewing and writing skills; a history of volunteering at a shelter can provide an example of strong interpersonal and organizational skills. Mention How You Will Follow Up. Towards the end of your letter, say how you will follow up with the employer. You might say that you will call the office to follow up in about a week (don't follow up any sooner). However, do not include this if the internship listing specifically says not to contact the office. Carefully Proofread and Edit. Be sure to thoroughly proofread your cover letter for spelling and grammar errors. Many internships are very competitive, and any error can hurt your chances of getting an interview. Also, avoid using too many words to convey your information and intent. Keep your points brief and targeted. Internship Cover Letter Examples Review sample printed and email cover letters for internship positions, and get a template to download to use as a starting point for your own letter. Internship Cover Letter Template Download the cover letter template (compatible with Google Docs or Word Online) or read the example below. The Balance Download the Word Template Internship Cover Letter Sample (Text version) Joseph Q. Applicant123 Main StreetAnytown, CA email@example.comOctober 26, 2022Jane SmithDirector, Human ResourcesBC Labs123 Business Rd.Business City, NY 54321Dear Ms. Smith,I am writing to apply for the scientific research summer internship position that was listed in the Anytown University Career Services Office. I believe my research and conservation experience make me an ideal candidate.I have had a great deal of research experience in chemistry, biology, and geology, both in the lab and in the field. Most of my experience is in environmental field studies. I am currently conducting research in our school's outdoor laboratory to assess the water quality of a nearby pond. I know water quality assessment is a component of this internship, and I know my previous experience makes me a prime candidate for this.Last summer, I worked as a conservation assistant at the National Trust's Clumber Park. Along with trail maintenance and building, I also served as a research assistant for the research organization at the park. I conducted an analysis of soil samples, and input data from various research projects. I received a special commendation from the director of the research organization for my attention to detail and dedication to research.I believe that I would be an asset to your program. This internship would provide me with the ideal opportunity to assist your organization and expand my research skills.I will call next week to see if you agree that my qualifications seem to be a match for the position. If so, I hope to schedule an interview at a mutually convenient time. I look forward to speaking with you.Thank you for your consideration,Sincerely,Signature (hard copy letter)Joseph Q. Applicant How To Write an Email Cover Letter If you're sending your cover letter via email, your format will be slightly different than a traditional letter. List your name and the job title in the subject line of the email message. Include your contact information in your email signature, and don't list the employer's contact information (also don’t list your contact information at the top of the message). Start your email message with the salutation. Email Cover Letter Example Subject: Liz Lerner – Marketing Intern PositionDear Mr. Peters,It was with much interest that I read your posting on the ABC College job board inviting applications for a marketing internship at Brand Solutions Inc.As an honors student in marketing, I have successfully completed upper-division coursework in marketing management, print and online advertising, social media management, and data analysis, which have provided me with a firm understanding of rising market strategies and technologies.This coursework included on-site practicums with Boyd Brothers LLC and Boulevard Bistro, where I helped the owners of these businesses establish their first-ever social media presence on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter. This involved setting up their accounts, creating photo and video content, writing posts, launching digital ad campaigns, and tracking user engagement via Google Analytics and Facebook Analytics. I am also well-versed in the use of Adobe Creative Cloud for graphic design and Microsoft Office suite.Impressed by the press that Brand Solutions Inc. has received in Market Branding Today and on Forbes Online, I am eager for the challenges and opportunities I would experience as your next marketing intern. My resume is attached; may we please schedule a personal interview to discuss my qualifications for this role in greater detail? Thank you for your time, consideration, and forthcoming response. Sincerely,Liz Lernerliz.firstname.lastname@example.org/in/lizlerner (optional) Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Do I have to write a cover letter for an internship? If a cover letter is listed as optional, you don’t have to include one. However, a cover letter provides you with the opportunity to showcase the credentials you have for the position. When you don’t have formal work experience, your cover letter is a good way to highlight the talents, attributes, and experience that make you an ideal candidate for the role. What can I include in a cover letter when I don’t have work experience? When you don’t have work experience, you can share examples of volunteering, extracurricular activities, schoolwork, academic programs, sports, community organizations, and other ways you have gained skills and experience that qualify you for the position. Was this page helpful? Thanks for your feedback! Tell us why! Other Submit Sources The Balance uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy. CareerOneStop. "Cover Letters." North Central College. "How to Write an Internship Cover Letter: Examples & Tips." University of Michigan. "Cover Letter Resources." Handshake. "Top 5 Tips for Writing an Internship Cover Letter."