Just as there’s no one right way to develop a resume for the for-profit sector, resumes for nonprofit jobs are also dependent on the target job and organization. With more than 1 million nonprofits in the US, nonprofit jobs are as varied as those in the corporate sector. The best approach is to first understand what the organization is looking for in an ideal candidate, then develop a resume that highlights your relevant experience and training.
Research Before You Write
Review the job posting, check out the organization’s Web site, read press releases and watch for newspaper and television clips. Learn as much as you can about the organization’s core values and mission. Once you have a good idea of how you would benefit the employer if hired, you can reinforce your key qualifications and show that you would be an excellent team member in your resume.
If you’re interested in a particular nonprofit, consider volunteering to learn more about the culture, show your commitment and expand your network. You might even secure a job interview from an insider’s recommendation.
Summarize Your Key Qualifications
Lead your resume with a Career Summary that outlines your career goal, most desirable credentials and even your personal mission statement.
Results-driven nonprofit manager with 15 years of experience developing innovative programs that serve special-needs populations. Deeply committed to improving the lives of adolescent girls with developmental disabilities. Proven ability to provide team leadership, driving performance, program improvement and quality initiatives. Visionary leader known for ability to win community support, develop key coalitions and build relationships with a shared sense of purpose.
Tout Your Skills
When reviewing resumes, nonprofit resume screeners ask: “Does this person have the required skills to do the job?” Therefore, it’s important that your resume demonstrates job-specific skills. Include a Skills section and provide a bulleted list of keywords related to the job.
Demonstrate Your Accomplishments
It’s easy to say you have certain skills, but a strong resume proves you have the stated skills by providing examples of related accomplishments. Pepper your resume with evidence that you’ve contributed to your past employers, went above and beyond your job responsibilities, and worked hard to make a difference.
Quantify your accomplishments so the impact of your work is understandable to outsiders. It’s a misconception that workers from the nonprofit sector can’t provide measurable accomplishments because of the lack of “for profit” financial results. Every job in every field has its measure of success.
- Coordinated capital campaign that raised $200K and enabled organization to purchase a four-bedroom home for a new independent-living program.
- Authored proposal and won contract for 200-bed day care center.
- Cut overhead by 12 percent -– saving $650K annually -– through comprehensive cost-saving initiatives.
Emphasize Your Volunteer Experience
Nonprofit hiring managers usually like to see job seekers who are dedicated to serving the community. Include your volunteer work in a Volunteer Experience section. Mention leadership roles, participation in special initiatives, board or committee memberships, event planning or orchestration, and assistance with fund-raising drives.
If You’re Transitioning from For-Profit
It’s not as hard as it may seem to transition to the nonprofit arena. When doing your research, you will find you have transferable skills that would be valuable to a nonprofit organization. Many nonprofits are run in an entrepreneurial style, so your corporate accomplishments would probably be of interest. Do emphasize volunteer work and clearly state why you are making this change. Your resume’s Career Summary can contain your passion for a career with a nonprofit and your interest in making a difference.
Nonprofit hiring managers might discard your application if they think you’re too expensive (most nonprofit jobs pay less than their for-profit counterparts). Use your cover letter to explain why you are pursuing this career path so that employers see your enthusiasm for this career. If your reasons for pursuing a nonprofit are personal -- say your baby was born with a birth defect and you’re targeting The March of Dimes -- mentioning the reason for your career shift will show you’re committed to the cause and may help you secure an interview.
Learn more about charity careers.
Are you researching tips for writing a cover letter for a new teacher with no experience? Perfect, you have come to the right place to find cover letter writing tips to put together an excellent letter for a first-year teacher with no experience in the classroom.
As a new teacher, getting your job applications together can seem like a daunting task but will pay off in the future.
Maybe you’ve finished your first-year teacher resume and are thinking, now what? Do you just send it off and wait for your phone to ring? You can wait as long as you like, but it probably won’t ring. Why? Because you forgot to include your cover letter! Or maybe you did include a cover letter or letter of intent, but it failed to wow the reader.
So to answer your burning question, “Is a cover letter as crucial as everyone says it is?” Yes! It is very important to you and your future career as a teacher!
An application letter is what introduces the job applicant to the hiring manager or human resources specialist. This document is what piques a potential school’s interest and encourages them to read the submitted resume and other supporting documents.
A cover letter for a new teacher with no experience is your one and only opportunity to make a great first impression. Therefore, you must invest time and effort into crafting an appealing and convincing cover letter that shows passion and personality! And as a new teacher, you really want to have a strong cover letter to help you gain your first teaching position.
What does a cover letter for a new teacher position contain that makes it so crucial?
Writing Tips – A Winning Cover Letter for a New Teacher with No Experience Includes:
- Education and credentials
- Years of relevant experience
- Related prior positions
- Hard skill sets
- Soft skill sets
- Transferable skills – for career changers
- Greatest strengths
- Why the job candidate would be an asset to the school or organization
- Commitment to the school
- Unique talents and/or expertise the job candidate has to move the school forward and/or help to improve student achievement
However, sometimes it’s not what’s actually written on the page that is so important, but how it is communicated.
Did you write your cover letter with passion and conviction?
Does your personality and enthusiasm for teaching shine through?
Have you sold yourself as a potential teacher, as well as a standout human being?
Your eagerness for the teaching position must LEAP off the page!
You must be able to make the reader feel just as excited as you are for this opportunity.
So, how do you sell your excitement and enthusiasm in your cover letter?
The key to developing an expressive cover letter for a new teaching job posting is to incorporate strategic words and phrases, such as
- My commitment to advancing a class of learners is…
- Based upon my academic background, I am able to utilize the latest methods …
- Colleagues would describe me as an enthusiastic, collaborative and driven team member…
- Being a diligent and results-oriented professional…
- The greatest assets I bring to the table are my unique experience, passion, and self-motivation…
- I have a proven talent for collaborating with and motivating colleagues…
- With a solid track record for building a highly driven and engaged group of learners…
When writing a cover letter for a new teaching position, it may be difficult to come up with strong sentences to sell yourself when you lack concrete teaching experience.
Here are some examples of sentences you might include to help you make a strong letter.
- Please consider this letter and enclosed resume as my official candidacy to help maintain the important and tough standards your school sets in elementary education.
- If you are looking for someone who is positive, personable, and able to perform a variety of tasks in an ever-changing environment, then look no further.
- I possess a calm attitude and a superb understanding of students’ needs.
- Family and friends always notice how comfortable their children feel with me.
- I have a tremendous love for children and will place a high standard on learning.
- I hope to instill a love of learning and a desire for constant knowledge within each student.
- Please contact me at your convenience to set up a meeting so that we may discuss in greater detail how my qualifications would best meet the needs of your educational program.
Incorporate These Items into Your Cover Letter for a New Teacher
- Greatest relevant accomplishments
- Goals for a classroom
- Teaching methods that you utilize
- Teaching style
- Quotes or testimonials
Include Greatest Relevant Accomplishments
When digging up your best accomplishments to highlight in your letter of intent, make sure they are relevant, impressive, and well-explained. They should demonstrate a certain skill such as problem-solving, critical thinking, classroom management, collaboration, etc. These professional achievements should describe what the challenge was, what action was taken, and what the result was. You can use the CAR acronym to help you write your accomplishments: Challenge, Action, Result.
If you are able to incorporate facts and figures, the better off you will be. Since facts are easy to break down and comprehend, they mean a great deal to a hiring school district. Furthermore, by using figures and expanding upon your achievements, you can concretely demonstrate your talents and skills. This means you can demonstrate that your methods directly affected students’ performance on testing. Therefore, you are able to prove your worth to the school district you are applying to.
When deciding to include a few of your most impressive accomplishments, you can incorporate them either in paragraph format in one of the body paragraphs of your letter, or by listing 3-4 accomplishments in a shorter, bullet-point format.
As a new teacher, you may think it’s difficult to come up with relevant accomplishments when you lack teaching experience; however, there are still experiences you can use to highlight your teaching related talents. These include:
Quotes/testimonials are perfect to include in a cover letter for a new teacher with no experience.
Speaking of proving your worth… incorporating quotes and testimonials into your cover letter or resume can be an invaluable tool for marketing yourself. At the bottom of your cover letter, you may want to incorporate a testimonial from a past boss, lead teacher, or professor, which demonstrates your hard work, dedication, and past performance. If you are deciding between a few different quotes to use, choose the most recent one or one that is most relevant to teaching.
Additional notes about attention-grabbing cover letters for a new or experienced teacher.
Regardless of the teaching position, you are applying for; you want to make sure your letter of intent looks tidy, professional, and well-thought-out. You should keep the document to one page in length, using appropriate titles and the correct address of the person/school of interest.
Make sure you use complete sentences and compelling wording. Do not include fluff or filler to lengthen your document – that trick will surely be noticed by the reader, and will not be held in your favor. Furthermore, ensure your document is spaced correctly and easy to read – spaces between paragraphs, or white space, is an excellent tool to make the document easier to peruse.
A Final Writing Tip When Creating Your Cover Letter for a New Teacher
Show Consistency in Your Cover Letter and Resume
For your new teacher resume and cover letter to match they must have:
- Same header/contact information at the top
- Same font style and size for the text in the body of both documents
- Same margins for both documents
- Similar content and highlights, but worded differently
After completing your cover letter for a new teacher posting, you should ensure that it is proofread by someone with an excellent standard of literacy. Even if you are confident in your abilities, it’s easy to be blind to your mistakes – always get it checked over before sending.
Hopefully, after reading through these cover letter writing tips, you now feel much more confident about writing your cover letter for a new teaching position.
Don’t let an absent or poorly written cover letter for a new teacher post hold you back from landing your dream teaching job!
If you would like more information, we have a variety of application letter samples that you can view to gain insights into how to write your cover letter for a new teaching position.
Learn more about Candace Alstad-Davies by reviewing my about me page. From that page, you can review testimonials and frequently asked questions.
Need some writing help making a stellar cover letter for a new teacher, resume or CV curriculum vitae?
Send an email if you like or give me a call toll-free at 1 877 738-8052. I would enjoy chatting with you.