Winning Writing: Email Essentials for College Students

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What is one of the most important responsibilities of a college student? Selling yourself. More specifically, selling yourself in writing. Given our increasingly competitive environments, students have had to do this more than ever before! Whether your objective is to get hired by a recruiter, or just to request a favor from a busy individual, excellent communication skills are a MUST. Your utmost goal is to show that you are one in a million, not one of a million. In this brief article, I will highlight several tips for writing stellar emails.


Be you. If you are not, you are fooling yourself and the recruiter. And you could end up in a job that makes you miserable.

Show two qualities – warmth and competence.

Warmth, so that they will want to enjoy a coffee with you. Competence, so that they will want to hire you. Can you think of a story that might make the person smile, or even laugh?

Mention mutual connections.

Name someone you know whom the individual you are writing to also knows (and respects). Or have that someone introduce the two of you. Mutual connections are a great element in building rapport.

Find similarities.

Try to compare yourself to the individual. Or mention something you have learned from them. Example: “Like you, I decided my strength was in finance, not marketing.”

Keep it brief.

Make sure there is an “ask” or next step.  Keep the ask small and specific. Be direct. Make it easy to say “Yes!”

Check it for accuracy!

Then, check it a second and third time! Ensure proper grammar and spelling of names.


With increased virtual communication, email introductions have become dull and typical. Try something new to impress your audience! Here is an example.

“I hope this email finds you well.” NO. This makes you one of a million.

“Greetings from sunny California!” YES! This sets you apart.

 By applying these simple steps to your email content, you will surely stand out and display yourself as a remarkable candidate. Well, what are you waiting for? Go and reach out to that recruiter you have in mind! Best of luck!

Pearson Students: What are your favorite email openings? Share in the comments below!

Taylor King is as second-year business administration student at North Carolina A&T State University. Upon obtainment of her degree, she plans to become a corporate chief of staff, helping to implement strategic initiatives surrounding human capital management in order to achieve organizational goals. In addition to serving as a representative of the University Honors Program, she enjoys serving as a Pearson Campus Ambassador on her campus. Taylor is both a plant and animal lover, and in her free time enjoys cooking meals, spending time with her family, and drinking a hot cup of coffee every morning.

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