Tuesday, April 10, 2007

In General, Be Specific on Job Application

I am applying for a position at a community college. In the application procedure, it states that "a written statement of how you meet the minimum and desired qualifications" must be submitted.

Would this be a written summary statement, or a statement addressing each minimum and desired qualification?

by Beth Brown, Professional Resume Writer

It’s best, in general, to be as specific as possible when you are asked a specific question. In this case, you should have a list of the “minimum and desired qualifications” in front of you and first just jot down how you match up; e.g., they are asking for someone with four years of experience and you have five, etc.

When you write your statement, you can begin and/or end with a more general, summarizing statement about how you are right for the position. Then, the main body of your answer should specifically respond to their criteria.

Here’s an example: Say they are looking for someone who is bilingual, has four years of experience working in an academic environment, and is enthusiastic about teaching. Your statement/answer could look something like this:

I believe in the mission and vision of the Santa Ana Community College, and that my skills, experience and drive will help to further the college's objectives of open access to educational excellence for all. Specifically, I have five years of experience working at the community college level, I speak four languages, and I have taught students in both public and private learning environments, using innovative techniques and technologies to meet the needs of students with diverse learning styles. I would welcome the opportunity to support the Santa Ana Community College as a Professor of Italian.

You get the idea – your answer needs to show not only how you meet or exceed their qualifications, but also that you are an interesting, enthusiastic, and experienced candidate for the position. And of course, do a spell check and have someone else proofread your answer before you send it off! Good luck!

Beth Brown has been a resume writer on Susan Ireland’s team for over 10 years, and has worked with more than 1000 clients from all over the world and all walks of life.

Susan Ireland’s Two Cents
Ask the Administrator: Statements of Teaching Philosophy by “Dean Dad” has some good advice on this topic. It’s a post on the Confessions of a Community College Dean, blog where you might find some other useful info for your faculty job search.

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