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Resumes, Cover Letters and Interviews

A resume should highlight what you bring to the table for the specific position for which you are applying. It should contain brief descriptions of education, employment and extracurricular engagement and should rarely exceed more than one page in length -- especially for 20somethings. Use common font and font size, such as Times New Roman in size 12. Identify the purpose of the resume and use keywords in descriptions to cater skills and experiences to the company's needs. Keep the information straightforward, relevant and truthful, and have the document proofread before use. These writing tips can help. 

Cover letters give an employer a better idea of who you are and how your experiences and interests align with the position in question. The document should be no longer than one page and written clearly, but personality can be infused through tone, word choice and content. The structure should flow from one point to another while addressing most of the job requirements -- ideally using the same terms the job description used. If relevant, include additional information that employers should know about your previous experiences and employment. Create a heading with your contact information and leave whitespace throughout to avoid overwhelming the reader. Forbes shares some of these tips when describing how to write a cover letter

Successful interviews come from preparation. Research the company and job position. Practice answering the questions that might be asked and make a list of questions you would like answered - this will also indicate your interest in the job. Appearance is an important factor in an interview, so dress professionally. Clothing should be clean and free of wrinkles, shirts with a collar and a suit jacket or sports coat for both men and women, polished shoes, tidy hair. During the interview, be polite, positive, to make eye contact, smile occasionally and most of all know your material. Review your resume beforehand and practice discussion your experience in ways that will benefit the company you hope to join. Thank the interviewer at the end of the session, and always follow up with a thank-you note or email. Read more on how to interview effectively

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