Resume Writing Cover Letters  Job Search

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Resume Writing Cover Letters Job Search

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1. Resume Writing Cover Letters Job Search Haley Sims Assistant Director/Career Counselor 03.04.10

2. Overview of Services Counseling/Advising Forensic Science majors Haley Sims [email protected] http://blog.vcu.edu/hgsims (no www.) If you’re pre-health, you’ll see Erin Lowery ([email protected])

3. How Can We Help? Assessments – what am I interested in? Exploring career goals / options Resume & cover letter reviews Interview preparation – mock interviews Job search assistance – internships, co-ops, part-time, full-time

4. How Can We Help? Salary negotiation Considering graduate school Choosing between job offers What to do the first year on the job

5. Our Website www.students.vcu.edu/careers Resume writing / C.V. writing Cover letter writing Interview preparation Rams Recruiting Career Fairs On-campus interviewing

6. Resumes Content Format Appearance Sample Forensic Science resume on my blog blog.vcu.edu/hgsims Resume Guide

7. Resume Content & Format Name & Contact Info Objective Education Relevant Courses Relevant Coursework Technical Skills Laboratory Equipment Laboratory Procedures Computer Skills Relevant Experience Research Project or Course in detail Volunteer Work Job/Internship/Co-op Other Work Experience Honors & Activities

8. Jamie T. Student 907 Floyd Avenue ? Richmond, VA 23284 804.123.4567 ? [email protected] __________________________________________

9. Jamie T. Student 907 Floyd Avenue ? Richmond, VA 23284 804.123.4567 ? [email protected] _______________________________________________________________ OBJECTIVE: To obtain the Drug Chemistry Criminalist I position with the Springfield Laboratory within the Crime Laboratory Division at the Missouri State Highway Patrol utilizing my laboratory skills to further the mission of the organization. To obtain a full-time position within the field of Forensic Science utilizing my laboratory skills.

10. Jamie T. Student 907 Floyd Avenue ? Richmond, VA 23284 804.123.4567 ? [email protected] [email protected]_______ OBJECTIVE: To obtain a full-time position within the field of Forensic Science utilizing my laboratory skills. EDUCATION: Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science, Chemistry track Bachelor of Science in Chemistry Anticipated Graduation Date: May 2010, GPA: 3.0

11. Jamie T. Student 907 Floyd Avenue ? Richmond, VA 23284 804.123.4567 ? [email protected] [email protected]_______ OBJECTIVE: To obtain a full-time position within the field of Forensic Science utilizing my laboratory skills. EDUCATION: Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science, Chemistry track Bachelor of Science in Chemistry Anticipated Graduation Date: May 2010, GPA: 3.0 RELEVANT COURSES: ? Crime Scene Search and Recovery Techniques ? Survey of Forensic Science ? Forensic Microscopy ? Forensic Serology ? Forensic Evidence, Law and Criminal Procedure

13. Jamie T. Student 907 Floyd Avenue ? Richmond, VA 23284 804.123.4567 ? [email protected] [email protected]_____________________________________ OBJECTIVE: To obtain a full-time position within the field of Forensic Science utilizing my laboratory skills. EDUCATION: Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science, Chemistry track Bachelor of Science in Chemistry Anticipated Graduation Date: May 2010, GPA: 3.0 RELEVANT COURSES: ? Crime Scene Search and Recovery Techniques ? Survey of Forensic Science ? Forensic Microscopy ? Forensic Serology ? Forensic Evidence, Law and Criminal Procedure LABORATORY EQUIPMENT: ? microscope ? micropipette ? centrifuge ? vapor hoods ? spectrophotometer ? buret LABORATORY PROCEDURES: ? electrophoresis ? immunoassays ? spectroscopy ? cell and tissue culture ? gram staining ? pure culture techniques COMPUTER SKILLS: ? Microsoft Word ? Microsoft Excel ? Microsoft PowerPoint ? Microsoft Access ? C++ ? Photoshop COURSE PROJECT/RESEARCH: Chemistry and Society Lab, VCU, Richmond, VA, Fall 2007 ? Prepared samples of oxygen and carbon dioxide gas and examined the chemical properties of oxygen, carbon dioxide, exhaled air and room air ? Used a conductivity detector to measure the conductivity of several liquids, solutions and foods to observe the effect of ion concentration on conductivity and to measure conductivity changes during a chemical reaction ? Determined pH of rain on a wellplate using litmus paper and red cabbage juice

14. Jamie T. Student 907 Floyd Avenue ? Richmond, VA 23284 804.123.4567 ? [email protected] [email protected]____________________________________________________________ OBJECTIVE: To obtain a full-time position within the field of Forensic Science utilizing my laboratory skills. EDUCATION: Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science, Chemistry track Bachelor of Science in Chemistry Anticipated Graduation Date: May 2010, GPA: 3.0 RELEVANT COURSES: ? Crime Scene Search and Recovery Techniques ? Survey of Forensic Science ? Forensic Microscopy ? Forensic Serology ? Forensic Evidence, Law and Criminal Procedure LABORATORY EQUIPMENT: ? microscope ? micropipette ? centrifuge ? vapor hoods ? spectrophotometer ? buret LABORATORY PROCEDURES: ? electrophoresis ? immunoassays ? spectroscopy ? cell and tissue culture ? gram staining ? pure culture techniques COMPUTER SKILLS: ? Microsoft Word ? Microsoft Excel ? Microsoft PowerPoint ? Microsoft Access ? C++ ? Photoshop COURSE PROJECT/RESEARCH: Chemistry and Society Lab, VCU, Richmond, VA, Fall 2007 ? Prepared samples of oxygen and carbon dioxide gas and examined the chemical properties ofoxygen, carbon dioxide, exhaled air and room air ? Used a conductivity detector to measure the conductivity of several liquids, solutions and foods to observe the effect of ion concentration on conductivity and to measure conductivity changes during a chemical reaction ? Determined pH of rain on a wellplate using litmus paper and red cabbage juice OTHER WORK EXPERIENCE: ? Elephant Thai, Server, Richmond, VA, 08/06-Present ? Chili’s, Server, Richmond, VA, 05/05-08/06

15. Jamie T. Student 907 Floyd Avenue ? Richmond, VA 23284 804.123.4567 ? [email protected] [email protected]________________________________________________ OBJECTIVE: To obtain a full-time position within the field of Forensic Science utilizing my laboratory skills. EDUCATION: Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science, Chemistry track Bachelor of Science in Chemistry Anticipated Graduation Date: May 2010, GPA: 3.0 RELEVANT COURSES: ? Crime Scene Search and Recovery Techniques ? Survey of Forensic Science ? Forensic Microscopy ? Forensic Serology ? Forensic Evidence, Law and Criminal Procedures LABORATORY EQUIPMENT: ? microscope ? micropipette ? centrifuge ? vapor hoods ? spectrophotometer ? buret LABORATORY PROCEDURES: ? electrophoresis ? immunoassays ? spectroscopy ? cell and tissue culture ? gram staining ? pure culture techniques COMPUTER SKILLS: ? Microsoft Word ? Microsoft Excel ? Microsoft PowerPoint ? Microsoft Access ? C++ ? Photoshop COURSE PROJECT/RESEARCH: Chemistry and Society Lab, VCU, Richmond, VA, Fall 2007 ? Prepared samples of oxygen and carbon dioxide gas and examined the chemical properties ofoxygen, carbon dioxide, exhaled air and room air ? Used a conductivity detector to measure the conductivity of several liquids, solutions and foods to observe the effect of ion concentration on conductivity and to measure conductivity changes during a chemical reaction ? Determined pH of rain on a wellplate using litmus paper and red cabbage juice OTHER WORK EXPERIENCE: ? Elephant Thai, Server, Richmond, VA, 08/06-Present ? Chili’s, Server, Richmond, VA, 05/05-08/06 HONORS & ACTIVITIES: ? Dean’s List, Spring 2007, Spring 2008-Fall 2008 ? American Chemical Society Student Affiliates, member since Spring 2007 ? Forensic Science Student Club, member since Fall 2006

16. Jamie T. Student 907 Floyd Avenue ? Richmond, VA 23284 804.123.4567 ? [email protected] [email protected]___________________________________________________ OBJECTIVE: To obtain a full-time position within the field of Forensic Science utilizing my laboratory skills. EDUCATION: Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science, Chemistry track Bachelor of Science in Chemistry Anticipated Graduation Date: May 2010, GPA: 3.0 RELEVANT COURSES: ? Crime Scene Search and Recovery Techniques ? Survey of Forensic Science ? Forensic Microscopy ? Forensic Serology ? Forensic Evidence, Law and Criminal Procedure LABORATORY EQUIPMENT: ? microscope ? micropipette ? centrifuge ? vapor hoods ? spectrophotometer ? buret LABORATORY PROCEDURES: ? electrophoresis ? immunoassays ? spectroscopy ? cell and tissue culture ? gram staining ? pure culture techniques COMPUTER SKILLS: ? Microsoft Word ? Microsoft Excel ? Microsoft PowerPoint ? Microsoft Access ? C++ ? Photoshop COURSE PROJECT/RESEARCH: Chemistry and Society Lab, VCU, Richmond, VA, Fall 2007 ? Prepared samples of oxygen and carbon dioxide gas and examined the chemical properties ofoxygen, carbon dioxide, exhaled air and room air ? Used a conductivity detector to measure the conductivity of several liquids, solutions and foods to observe the effect of ion concentration on conductivity and to measure conductivity changes during a chemical reaction ? Determined pH of rain on a wellplate using litmus paper and red cabbage juice OTHER WORK EXPERIENCE: ? Elephant Thai, Server, Richmond, VA, 08/06-Present ? Chili’s, Server, Richmond, VA, 05/05-08/06 HONORS & ACTIVITIES: ? Dean’s List, Spring 2007, Spring 2008-Fall 2008 ? American Chemical Society Student Affiliates, member since Spring 2007 ? Forensic Science Student Club, member since Fall 2006

17. Resume Appearance Margins can go out as far as .5 all the way around No grammar mistakes Consistency – all periods or no periods Bullets or symbols are uniform throughout resume, not cluttered Font is no smaller than 11 point font 1 or 2 forms of highlighting are used BUT NOT ALL Resume is printed on quality resume paper Resume is 1 page* All of the pertinent information is there for work experience The word “I” is not used The objective is specific and the right one* There is plenty of white space, but not too much It’s not stapled or double-sided Your name is larger than the rest of the resume

18. Jamie T. Student 907 Floyd Avenue ? Richmond, VA 23284 804.123.4567 ? [email protected] ________________________________________________________________ References Mr. Howard Jones Assistant Manager Chili’s Restaurant 123 Main Street Richmond, VA 23228 (804) 727-3191 [email protected] Mr. Jones supervised me while I worked as a server at Chili’s for two years. Dr. Anna Smith Forensic Science Instructor Virginia Commonwealth University P.O. Box 123 907 Floyd Avenue Richmond, VA 23284 (804) 828-9999 [email protected] Dr. Smith instructed my Scientific Crime Scene Investigation class and has known me for two years.

19. Cover Letters Job Search Correspondence Handout http://www.students.vcu.edu/careers/jobs/ Should be tailored to the employer Find a specific name if you can Always address the person with a title

20. Job Description Position: Firearms Examiner—Forensic Scientist I/II, or Forensic Scientist Trainee The North Louisiana Criminalistics Laboratory (NLCL) in Shreveport, Louisiana, has an immediate opening for a Forensic Scientist I, II or a Forensic Scientist-Trainee in the Firearms Section. The NLCL is a full-service ASCLD/LAB accredited forensic laboratory serving 29 parishes in North Louisiana. In approximately 2-3 years the laboratory will move into a new forensic science center facility and will be a teaching facility for Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center-Shreveport, offering graduate studies in forensic science and residencies in Forensic Pathology. The Forensic Scientist in the Firearms Section is responsible for performing microscopic examinations of firearms evidence, operating the National Integrated Ballistic Identification Network (NIBIN), toolmark comparisons, serial number restoration, distance determinations, generating reports, court testimony, and assisting with quality assurance duties of the section. The scientist in this position is assigned individual cases to completely work from evidence examination to report writing. Future responsibilities may include cross-training in examination of fingerprints and impression evidence. To be considered for the Forensic Scientist I or II position, the applicant must have a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, biology, forensic science, or related fields from an accredited institution, and at least two years of professional experience in Firearms and Toolmarks examination. To be considered for the Forensic Scientist-Trainee position, the applicant must have a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, biology, forensic science and a strong desire to complete extensive, on-the-job training. The starting salary ranges from $38,000-45,000 (plus full benefits i.e. medical, dental) and is negotiable based upon the experience and education as described above. The position is open only to U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Send information to: Richard Beighley, Firearms Section Supervisor North Louisiana Crime Laboratory 1115 Brooks St. Shreveport, LA 71101 (318) 227-2889 (318) 227-2889 Fax: (318) 227-9013 [email protected]

21. Job Description – Check Box Position: Firearms Examiner—Forensic Scientist I/II, or Forensic Scientist Trainee The Forensic Scientist in the Firearms Section is responsible for: performing microscopic examinations of firearms evidence, operating the National Integrated Ballistic Identification Network (NIBIN) toolmark comparisons serial number restoration distance determinations, generating reports court testimony assisting with quality assurance duties of the section. The scientist in this position is assigned individual cases to completely work from: evidence examination report writing Future responsibilities may include cross-training in: examination of fingerprints and impression evidence. To be considered for the Forensic Scientist-Trainee position, the applicant must have: a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, biology, forensic science a strong desire to complete extensive, on-the-job training

22. 1st Paragraph Haley Sims * 907 Floyd Avenue * Richmond, VA 23284 * [email protected] * 804-828-1645 March 4, 2010 Richard Beighley, Firearms Section Supervisor North Louisiana Crime Laboratory 1115 Brooks St. Shreveport, LA 71101 Dear Dr. Beighley: I am writing to apply for and show my interest in the Forensic Scientist – Trainee position. I will receive my Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science from Virginia Commonwealth University this May.

23. 2nd Paragraph Haley Sims * 907 Floyd Avenue * Richmond, VA 23284 * [email protected] * 804-828-1645 March 4, 2010 Richard Beighley, Firearms Section Supervisor North Louisiana Crime Laboratory 1115 Brooks St. Shreveport, LA 71101 Dear Dr. Beighley: I am writing to apply for and show my interest in the Forensic Scientist – Trainee position. I will receive my Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science from Virginia Commonwealth University this May. I was excited to see this position posted because I am very impressed with the work of the North Louisiana Crime Lab. … It would be an honor to work on such an amazing team.

24. 3rd Paragraph Haley Sims * 907 Floyd Avenue * Richmond, VA 23284 * [email protected] * 804-828-1645 March 4, 2010 Richard Beighley, Firearms Section Supervisor North Louisiana Crime Laboratory 1115 Brooks St. Shreveport, LA 71101 Dear Dr. Beighley: I am writing to apply for and show my interest in the Forensic Scientist – Trainee position. I will receive my Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science from Virginia Commonwealth University this May. I was excited to see this position posted because I am very impressed with the work of the North Louisiana Crime Lab. … It would be an honor to work on such an amazing team. During my time at Virginia Commonwealth University, I have had the opportunity to gain knowledge of evidence examination and techniques such as ...Through my team projects and assigned papers, I have developed strong written skills and am confident in my ability to write thorough reports. In my ____ class, I not only learned about, but also had the chance to examine fingerprints and impression evidence. As an intern with the Henrico County Police Department, I assisted in evidence processing procedures. I am definitely eager to seek extensive on-the-job training.

25. 4th Paragraph Haley Sims * 907 Floyd Avenue * Richmond, VA 23284 * [email protected] * 804-828-1645 March 4, 2010 Richard Beighley, Firearms Section Supervisor North Louisiana Crime Laboratory 1115 Brooks St. Shreveport, LA 71101 Dear Dr. Beighley: I am writing to apply for and show my interest in the Forensic Scientist – Trainee position. I will receive my Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science from Virginia Commonwealth University this May. I was excited to see this position posted because I am very impressed with the work of the North Louisiana Crime Lab. … It would be an honor to work on such an amazing team. During my time at Virginia Commonwealth University, I have had the opportunity to gain knowledge of evidence examination and techniques such as ...Through my team projects and assigned papers, I have developed strong written skills and am confident in my ability to write thorough reports. In my ____ class, I not only learned about, but also had the chance to examine fingerprints and impression evidence. As an intern with the Henrico County Police Department, I assisted in evidence processing procedures. I am definitely eager to seek extensive on-the-job training. I am very excited about the possibility of serving as a Forensic Scientist-Trainee at the North Louisiana Crime Lab. I may be reached at (804) 828-1645 and/or at [email protected] Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns. Thank you for your time and consideration. I look forward to hearing from you. Kindest regards, Haley Sims Haley Sims Enclosures: Resume, References

26. Action Plan 1. Update your resume* and references* 2. Look for job descriptions you're interested in: a. Search Rams Recruiting b. Check local employers' websites (Blog ? Handouts ? For majors ? Scroll to yours ? Science Employers) c. Talk/network - you never know what will come up in everyday conversation d. Attend Career Fairs and other events: Tuesday, March 9, 10-2, Commonwealth Ballroom e. Conduct an informational interview 3. Begin writing cover letters for the positions you're interested in: http://www.students.vcu.edu/careers/docs/JobSearchCorrespondence.pdf *Samples and handouts are on my blog: blog.vcu.edu/hgsims

27. Action Plan Practice answering common interview questions from our handout: www.students.vcu.edu/careers/docs/Interviewing.pdf Have a friend ask you questions Try InterviewStream http://vcu.interviewstream.com/ Schedule a mock interview with me

28. Action Plan 6. Brush up on Salary Negotiation skills a. Visit www.quintcareers.com and check out the salary negotiation tutorial in the Career Toolkit (left of the page) b. Figure out what to ask for www.salary.com – local search http://www.glassdoor.com/index.htm http://jobnob.com National Association of Colleges & Employers (NACE) average offer c. If they ask for salary requirements, you always give a range (between 5-7,000 dollars) and you can list this information in your cover letter if you’re not sure where to do so. 7. Track everything (in a notebook, Excel, etc.) 8. Practice good etiquette 9. Get a LinkedIn account: www.linkedin.com & use this guide to navigate: http://www.students.vcu.edu/careers/docs/0910_careers_social_ntw.pdf

29. Good Luck! University Career Center 1st Floor, Student Commons Across from Chick-fil-A Haley Sims [email protected] 804.828.1645 blog.vcu.edu/hgsims

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