How to craft an effective high school student cover letter

For high school students who are striving to earn a part-time position, an internship, or any other type of extracurricular work, writing a great cover letter is the first key step to take. Since many high school students do not have a long work history yet, this can require some extra time and cleverness to frame high-school-level experiences compellingly.

In this guide, we teach you exactly how to write an effective cover letter as a high school student. Continue reading to learn all about:

  1. Crafting a memorable cover letter header as a high school student
  2. Tailoring your high school student cover letter to be specific to the reader
  3. Writing an eye-catching introduction for your high school cover letter
  4. Highlighting your skills and academic experiences as a high school student
  5. Persuasively concluding your high school student cover letter

Let’s jump into the first step and begin crafting the ideal high school student cover letter!

1. How to craft a memorable cover letter header as a high school student

As a high school student, your top priority when writing a cover letter is to make it look professional.

High school students can often overlook the importance of visual design when writing cover letters, as they are more focused on making the letter’s content sound good.

Yet, a great-looking and professional cover letter format can go a long way in impressing employers.

In your cover letter header, you should include:

  • Your name and academic position
  • Your contact information
  • The name of the company you are applying to
  • The address of the company you are applying to

Here is an example of a well-formatted high school student cover letter header

Molly Madison, High School Class President
(123) 456-7890 | |

To: Jackson’s Downtown Boutique & Shoppe Gallery
1234 Street Address
Phoenix, AZ

2. How to properly tailor your high school student cover letter

After giving your cover letter an excellent visual structure and flow, your next step is to tailor the greeting and content of your high school student cover letter.

Tailoring a cover letter means making the information as relevant to the reader as possible. For instance, if you are applying to work in an ice cream shop, describing how your skills can be applied to customer service and food safety are good ways to make your letter relevant to the job.

Additionally, you should address your cover letter to the person who is most likely to read and review it, such as a company’s owner or a head manager.

Here are 3 examples of personalized cover letter greetings

  • Dear Mr. John Doe,
  • Dear Hiring Manager John Doe,
  • Dear Mr. John Doe & the Hiring Department,

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3. How to write an eye-catching introduction for your high school student cover letter

When applying for jobs as a high school student, you are likely not going to have an extensive work history to showcase in your cover letter.

To make up for this, you need to ensure each detail you write is as eye-catching and compelling as possible. It is especially important to pay extra attention to your introduction, as an introductory paragraph can often be the thing that either impresses employers or makes them lose interest.

The best high school cover letter introductions should include:

  • A brief overview of your academic history (academic performance, extracurriculars, etc.)
  • Any key roles you have held in your academic history (leadership roles, athletics, etc.)
  • A brief statement on what you are passionate about (this should be relevant to the role, position, or opportunity you are applying for)

Here is an example of a great introduction from a high school student cover letter

Dear Mr. John Doe,

I am a junior at Rowe County High School seeking my first job in the outdoor recreation industry. As a student, I helped to start an Outdoor Program club that now has 30+ members and takes students on chaperoned adventures, such as hiking and camping. Your company is a staple in the local outdoor community and gaining this job would provide me with the opportunity to both practice my passion and learn more about the industry. 

4. How to highlight your skills and academic experiences as a high school student

With your introduction out of the way, you can now begin writing your cover letter’s body paragraphs.

Many people choose to break up their body paragraphs into smaller, simple sentences. Additionally, bullet points can be used to keep your body paragraphs more organized and easy to skim over.

When writing these body paragraphs, your main goal is to describe your best skills and accomplishments as a high school student. You should select skills and accomplishments that are highly relevant to the position you are applying for.

Here are 6 examples of skills to include in a high school student cover letter

  • Communication skills (describe your exact style of communication)
  • Leadership and teamwork
  • Time management
  • Conflict resolution
  • Problem-solving
  • Critical thinking

Here is an example of how to describe an accomplishment in a high school student cover letter

As a student at Monroe High School, I won the election for Class President two years in a row during my sophomore and junior years. This year, I am serving as the Senior Class President, which comes with greater responsibilities, including management of the school spirit budget.

5. How to persuasively conclude your high school student cover letter

To conclude your high school student cover letter, you must write a persuasive closing statement that encourages the reader to get in touch with you promptly.

Remember to maintain your professionalism in your conclusion as well by including a formal sign-off.

Here is an example of a persuasive closing statement from a high school student's cover letter

I greatly appreciate you taking the time to read my letter and look forward to hearing from you in the near future. As I am still in school, the best hours to reach me are in the early morning between 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. or in the late afternoon from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. It would be my honor to work at your company and I hope to hear from you within the next week about my application.

Many Thanks,

[Applicant Name]

Published on Jan. 19, 2023

Julia is a professional writer, translator and graphic designer. She holds degrees in translation and interpretation, and has international work experience from a number of different countries in Europe as well as China and Panama. Julia formerly taught academic writing and as a graphic designer contributed to outlets such as The Business of Business. She has a passion for lifelong learning and good coffee.

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