Prepare your CV and Get Ready for your Interview
CV and Cover Letter Writing Workshops
During each academic year, CV and cover letter writing workshops, interview preparation, and other career related workshops tackling various topics, take place on both campuses or online giving the students and soon-to-be graduates an opportunity to brush up on their skills and preparing them for their career and future ahead.
Make sure the following items are found in your résumé:
- Name and family name
- Address (Building, Street, City, Country)
- Phone number
- Email: make sure it is in a professional format such as firstname.lastname@example.org
- University, degree (Bachelor of Science or Arts), major, minor, date of graduation
- Mention the semesters where you were listed on honor or distinction lists or your GPA if it is higher than 3.00
- For all work experience, include your position, company name, month and date you were hired and the month and date you left the job
- Mention any internship/training you completed
- Include any relevant experience, volunteer work, social affiliations, etc.
- Include your computer skills
- Include your date of birth, nationality and interests
- Make sure you spell check the whole document
- Font size is between 10 and 12 (Times News Roman or Arial)
- Check these samples of CVs
A cover letter is a document that you might be asked to submit along with your CV when you are applying to a job or internship.It should be tailor-made for each position as it includes “your answers” to the job description in addition to your general qualifications and skills. It can be written by answering the following:
- Header: Your personal information (name, phone number, email address, address)
- Name and position of the person you are addressing the letter to (usually the HR department or HR director)
- 1st paragraph: Who are you? (i.e. your major, what are you applying for, university)
- 2nd paragraph: Why are you applying for this opportunity?
- 3rd paragraph: How do you meet the requirements (usually here you answer the job description)
- 4th paragraph: How can you contribute to the success of the company and how can you be of an added value to the position (i.e. previous experience if any, coursework, academic projects, technical skills, etc.)
- Closing statement (i.e. Looking forward to hearing back from you and to further discussing my abilities. Sincerely..)
Tips for a Successful Interview
Before the Interview
- Gather as much information as possible such as: exact address, type of business, size, some key financial figures, key people, and the interviewer’s full name, major competitors in the local and international market, etc.
- Prepare a pen, a notepad and extra copies of your resume to take with you to the interview
At the Interview
- Arrive on time as arriving late, for whatever reason, always makes a negative impression
- Introduce yourself with a smile and a firm handshake
- Don’t criticize past employers or colleagues
- What to wear: for men, a dark suit is always the best choice in a corporate setting with a white or soft blue shirt. A tie is also recommended. For women, dark suits (pants or skirts) are also a good choice. They can be worn with short or long sleeved blouses
- Be prepared to answer questions such as: Tell me about yourself; what are your strengths; what are your weaknesses; what do you know about our company; why do you want to work for our company; why are you interested in this position; how would your colleagues describe you; how would your boss describe you; how would you describe yourself; how would you describe your last job performance; what are your major accomplishments in your career; can you meet deadlines when you work under pressure; what are the activities that contribute to your personal development
- Be enthusiastic
- Show maturity and courtesy
- Be prepared to ask questions such as:
- what are the short-term and long-term objectives you would like the recruited person to accomplish in this job?
- what kind of training would I receive?
- what are the most important skills required to perform this job?
- can you describe a typical on-the-job day?
- are there any problems to be faced in this position?
- are there advancement opportunities in this position?
- which employee appraisal system do you use to evaluate the employees in this position?
- Please note that these questions are used as guidelines and some of these questions may not be suitable for your interviewing situation
Closing the Interview
- Show your interest and enthusiasm to be part of the company’s team of employees
- Thank the interviewer for his/her time and consideration
- You may ask the time frame within which you can expect to hear from the company