How to Write a Cover Letter for Nursing

by Jennifer Kimrey

    Beginning a new nursing job can be an exciting and fulfilling step in your career as a medical professional. Taking this next step typically requires writing an updated cover letter, one that gives your potential future employer a great first impression. Whether you're a recent graduate of nursing school looking to start your career or a seasoned nursing veteran seeking a fresh start at a new place, writing a well-crafted cover letter can help you get your foot in the door.

    Heading

    Step 1

    Begin the cover letter with a proper heading. Include the full date at the beginning of the heading, writing out the name of the month.

    Step 2

    Include your contact information in the heading three lines down from the date. On separate lines, write your name; mailing address; city, state and zip code; phone number; and email address.

    Step 3

    Write out the contact information of the person to whom you're writing the letter one line down from your contact information. On separate lines, write the name of the hiring manager; the medical institution to which you're applying; mailing address; city, state and zip code; phone number; and email address.

    Body

    Step 1

    Begin the body of the cover letter by writing a salutation to the hiring manager one line down from the heading. A simple "Dear Mr. Smith" or "To Ms. Jones" will suffice. Punctuate the salutation with a colon or a comma.

    Step 2

    Write the introductory paragraph of your cover letter. In this paragraph, you should briefly introduce yourself and explain your interest in the nursing position and the medical organization.

    Step 3

    Choose two to four special skills or qualities you possess that are applicable to the nursing position. Write a succinct paragraph for each of these skills or qualities, demonstrating how each of these competencies makes you a qualified candidate for the job position.

    Step 4

    Conclude your cover letter with a closing paragraph. This paragraph acts as a brief summary that serves to highlight and reinforce your interest in the position and your strengths. Include a congenial closing line like, "I look forward to discussing the position with you soon."

    Closing

    Step 1

    Close your cover letter with a signature one line down from the closing paragraph. Choose a sign-off word or phrase, like sincerely, best regards or with thanks. Punctuate this with a comma.

    Step 2

    Write out your full name three lines down from the sign-off. Sign your name in black or blue ink within the space created by the three lines between the sign-off and your typed-out name.

    Step 3

    Include a note at the bottom of the cover letter explaining any attachments you're sending with the cover letter. For example, if you're including a resume with the cover letter, write, "Enclosure: Resume."

    Tips

    • Proofread your cover letter many times before sending it.
    • Follow up with the hiring manager after submitting your cover letter.

    Warnings

    • Avoid sounding arrogant or aggressive in your cover letter; keep your tone positive and confident.
    • Avoid flowery language in your cover letter and don't include irrelevant information.

    About the Author

    Jennifer Kimrey earned her bachelor's degree in English writing and rhetoric from St. Edward's University in Austin, Texas. She's a regular contributor to the "Houston Chronicle" and her work has appeared on Opposing Views Cultures, The Austin American-Statesman, The Red Vault, The Western Vault and various other websites and publications.

    Photo Credits

    • Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images