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How Long Should a Cover Letter Be for an Internship

An internship is a short-term course offered by companies that provide working knowledge and experience to young and dynamic candidates. The internship can be grasped to learn skills, build knowledge, and build a strong network in the same profession. Many times students are asked for resumes and cover letters when applying for any of the internship programs. This comes out to be a tough challenge for aspiring students, as they are always worried about what we have to include in their resume, and what must be the actual length of a cover letter?

So, the cover letter is too short then the letter will seem generic and will lack effort if it is too long then also the letter will not be given focus. The employer will only spend a limited time reading your cover letter, so it must be up to the mark. You can make the most of that time by introducing yourself, providing a brief description of your qualification and experience, and that all without repeating yourself.

How Long Should a Cover Letter Be?

The cover letters should be between half a page to one full page in length. The limit of your cover letter length must be up to four to five paragraphs, opening each paragraph with a succinct topic sentence and closing with an attention-gaining final thought.

In this article, we have mentioned some ways to reach the correct length for the cover letter, and by using this you can easily impress the hiring manager along the way.

1. Check the Length Requirements

At the time of applying for a particular internship program, the employers may include some directions for your cover letter in the internship posting. They can give you a cover letter and a word limit or will provide you with a writing prompt or some questions for you to answer. So make sure that you must create a first impression by following all the directions they provide to you, including word count or cover length directions.

2. Do Not Focus On Hitting a Specific Word Count

Do many students get confused that what should be the word count for a cover letter? So if the employer has mentioned some specific word count then you must go with that limit, otherwise, 250 to 400 words are enough for a cover letter. This word count will fill half a page or one full page using 12 point font, while still having room for the correct spacing and margins.

The main thing the students must keep in mind, however, the focus of the content must be on general word count but that does not mean that this must be the actual count, you can write more or less than this word count. This is a general count to keep you on the right track.

3. Embrace the White Space

White space in your cover letter makes it more enjoyable for the hiring manager to read. Try to break the text by adding a blank line between paragraphs, setting a one-inch margin to each side. With lots of space in your cover letter will look more enjoyable to read than forced read to a wall of text. This also looks appealing to the employer to read, otherwise, the hiring manager will go blank and will not show any interest in reading your cover letter.

4. Try to Limit Your Cover Letter to Four Paragraphs

As mentioned above, your cover letter should be between half a page and one full page in length. Try to divide your cover letter into three to four short and simple paragraphs that can be read in approximately 10 seconds or less than that. In all these paragraphs try to include a strong topic sentence and write just enough to prove that you are interested in the company and the internship position. Do not forget to mention the skills that you will bring to the new role.

5. Keep the Paragraphs Focused And Sentences Too Short

To provide the maximum impact, try to focus each of your written paragraphs around one central idea. Lead the topic with a strong topic sentence that can drive off the mind of the employer. The sentence will tell the reader what your paragraph is about. Next, try to add several short, and descriptive sentences that will support this main idea. Finally, wrap up each paragraph with an attention-gaining final thought or a brief conclusion sentence that can recap the main idea.

6. Try to Include Relevant And Impactful Stories

Your cover letter must include why you are eligible for the internship program, try to provide some relevant examples from your work history in college or university. If you are not sure about which qualification or experience you must include, try to look back at the internship posting for better and more relatable clues. Add on the skills to the cover letter that is an employer is asking for. You can also expand the qualification in the letter by citing recent accomplishments.

7. Do Not Give Away Everything

The main aim of your cover letter is to generate curiosity and land for an interview. For this reason, try to avoid explaining every single quality you possess and that you will bring to this new role. Instead, try to focus on your proudest accomplishments and just reveal enough about yourself to catch the hiring manager’s interest and encourage them to invite you for an interview process. Slightly less than one page is a great length of a cover letter for achieving this.

8. Trim It Down

What if you are not able to fit everything you want to include on one page? Consider having your family and friends read through your cover letter to edit the wordy language and unnecessary details. Leave in your most impressive achievements, but cut out the unnecessary details by removing the day-to-day job duties.

So, try to remember the cover letters should never extend beyond one page even for the most experienced candidate. Next, try to add several short, and descriptive sentences that will support this main idea. Finally, wrap up each paragraph with an attention-gaining final thought or a brief conclusion sentence that can recap the main idea. Writing 250 to 400 words are enough for a cover letter. This word count will fill half a page or one full page using 12 point font, while still having room for the correct spacing and margins.