Congratulations! You’ve decided to apply for an internship, job, grad school, or scholarship. Your application is often your first chance to introduce yourself to an employer, graduate program, or scholarship review committee. Applications for these opportunities vary and are usually quite different from what you may have filled out when applying for part-time jobs throughout high school or college.
For that reason, it’s important to spend time thinking about how your skills and experience make you a good fit for the opportunity. This process can take a little bit of time but trust us (and your future bank account): it’s worth it.
On this page, we’ll break down the parts of an application and add some best practices to consider. If you’re looking for examples of resumes for specific industries, please check out the Career Community pages.
Rezi is now available to UW-Madison students. This AI-powered platform helps you create and optimize your resume by scanning for errors and identifying keywords that can help your application stand out. Check it out after reading through this page.
Yeah, you read that right. Resume(s). As in you’ll probably have to create more than one.
Each job, internship, scholarship, or graduate program requires different skills and has unique needs and requirements. In the same way, your resume must be tailored to address each opportunity. It’s important to carefully review your resume each time you apply, remove irrelevant information, and reorganize your bullet points so that the most important stuff is always listed first.
We encourage you to return to this page as often as needed to make sure your materials are the actual best.
If you’d like one of our career advisors to look through your materials, please make an appointment below. Consider uploading your polished resume to Handshake and explore thousands of jobs and internships from 200,000+ employers nationwide
Resume Samples and Tool Guides
A resume is so much more than a list of your experiences. This outline will show you how to highlight your relevant skills, knowledge, and experiences to give you the best shot possible at getting invited to interview.
Strong bullet points take the basics of your work experiences and education and turn them into snapshots of your success. This worksheet shows you how.
Starting each bullet point with a strong verb helps to showcase your abilities. Use this list to add variety to bullet points you’ve already written, or to discover new skillsets you can incorporate in your resume.
Your Cover Letter
Your cover letter serves several purposes as part of your application. It demonstrates that you understand the needs of the employer, organization, or grad program and that you “get” them. This is your chance to introduce how your skills and experiences can serve as assets to their team.
The cover letter also serves as a writing sample, and good written communication skills typically rank anywhere from #1 to #3 on annual surveys of skills employers want in their new hires. So proofread, proofread, and proofread again.
Your cover letter and resume are not meant to be duplicates of each other, but to be complements. They should work together to help build your case as a qualified candidate for the position or opportunity you’re applying for.
If you have any questions or would like another set of eyes on your cover letter, let us know. Our career and internships advisors and specialists are here to help guide you through this process.
Cover Letter Sample and Guides
Learn how to format your cover letter so that it’s easy for employers to read and what you should include in each section.
Description of what to include in a cover letter as well as the format of a cover letter.
Starting a cover letter can be daunting! Here’s a step-by-step overview of the process, broken down into manageable pieces.
Resume & Cover Letter Review
Looking for a quick overview of how SuccessWorks can help you, or a fast review of your resume or cover letter?
SuccessWorks offers 15-minute virtual drop-in advising sessions on Google Hangouts every weekday during the fall and spring semesters. No appointment needed!
Monday – Thursday: 12:00 pm – 2:30 pm
Friday: 10:00 am – 1:00 pm
**Drop-In Advising has ended for the spring semester and will return September 2.
Make an appointment with one of our career & internship specialists!