The College Unit: An Independent Project

The College Process doesn't have to be so scary. Once you get started, you'll find that your to-do list is pretty easy to check off as long as you have a plan. As part of our college unit, you will work on creating very important pieces of your college portfolio. This assignment is independent and will take place outside of class. On this site, you will find a variety of tips and guidelines that will help you help yourself through this process. Ultimately, Mrs. Overly will oversee and edit all three components, and students may conference with Mrs. Overly in order to write a number of revisions that will help earn a final grade of an A before the deadline.

*All final parts of this portfolio must be printed on professional paper and paper clipped (not stapled). No cover page is needed and full names will be used on all these pieces, not social security numbers.
Total Points: 100

Part One

College Essay: Choose one college essay topic for this assignment. The goal is to answer the question while highlighting your own personal accomplishments, positive attitude, and vision for the future. Keep these to the required length and if there is no length defined, I suggest that a page and a half is a good length. Make sure that you include the prompt at the top of the essay along with your name and any other information the college requests. Below are the choices for University of Delaware this year. *Take a look at all your college essay topics and choose a topic that you could use for many different colleges.


The University of Delaware uses the Common Application topics for their applicants.
1. You need to sign in and register HERE
2. Once you have registered, explore this website and learn about all it offers.
3. Locate the common application topics and choose one. They will expect you to post your college essay online. The text box they offer DOES not spell check and so you MUST type your essay in word, spell check; print it out, edit; show it to me, revise; and then finally, copy and paste it to the box.

Part Two

Resume: You will design a professional resume that will highlight your best accomplishments. You may choose to write an academic, an athletic, or a work resume. The only difference is which information is on the 'top' of your resume. The purpose of your resume will determine the organization of the material on your resume. For example, if you write an academic resume, your academic details will list first.

First, you'll need to find a resume design that is appropriate for your purpose and visually attractive. Use this site to find hundreds of resume examples.

Also, feel free to use the resume builder application on our computers here at school but know that the templates on this site are limiting and (awfully) frustrating.

With the computers at school, the best way is to click on the start button, new office document, other documents, select resume wizard.
The Visual Importance of Resumes cannot be overlooked. Take a look at this very brief article on how to measure the visual impact of your resume.

1. Your resume will have to include an objective. An objective is a one sentence statement that tells the reader specifically what you hope to gain through this resume. The catch is to make it sound mature and confident.
For example: I look forward to working with children in a leadership position.
2. Your resume should include what you have accomplished and what positions you held, not just a long list of organizations you were supposedly involved with.
3. Your resume should absolutely not include hobbies or interests, nor should it include the highlights of your glorious middle school years.
4. The items on your resume must begin with most recent to least recent.
5. Your resume should remain on one page. There are exceptions, but those exceptions are reserved for individuals who have an exceptional amount of relevant accomplishments. *See me to help you make this decision.

Part Three

Cover Letter: A cover letter is a formal letter that allows the reader to learn more about you and your ability to fulfill a particular task. The cover letter is not a summary of your resume, but rather, a testament to your enthusiasm and confidence that you can meet the expectations of the challenge. For this assignment, you will write a letter to a potential employer or current employer with intentions of improving your current position or gaining a new one.

Cover Letter Outline

I. Efficiently draw attention to the occasion of your letter. (Why are you writing? Name drop a connection. Explain how you heard about the position.)
II. Discuss the skills you have gained already. Support your best characteristics with objective examples. Sound excited, confident, and eager.
III. Make the connection for your 'future' boss how the skills you already have will REALLY benefit what he/she will need for this position. Offer up what you can provide.
IV. Close your essay with confidence and a sincere interest in continuing this conversation at THEIR convenience. Be sure to appear flexible and willing to communicate further.
Close with 'Respectfully, Sincerely'
and LEAVE SPACE for you hand written name.
Type your name a couple lines below.

Empower your accomplishments by using this handy list of Cover Letter Action Words
Take a look at this Sample Cover Letter but be aware that cover letters are personal and this is only a sample.
Cover Letter Instructions

College Project Peer Edit

Good Looking Resume/Cover Letter Tips
This link will talk about font, color, and all sorts of other tid-bits that I think you'll enjoy.


Write a formal letter that will address one of the following prompts:
Be sure to formally address these letters.

1. Write a reasonable explanation why your grades do not truly reflect your academic potential (necessary for University of Delaware for C or lower).

I. Start positive. Clearly state that the reason you are writing is to explain grades that don't reflect your potential.
II. Tell the story of your bad grade, tough year, difficult subject. Don't blame anyone but yourself. However, you can explain that there were circumstances that really drew you mentally away from your priorities. THEN, be sure to show (with evidence) that you have been on an upward trend ever since.
III. Discuss a number of qualities that you gained from your experience that you believe will really help you succeed in the transition to college, especially your particular major.
IV. Assert your promise. What can they expect out of a student like you...not who you WERE but who you ARE right now.

2. Write a letter to a coach to invite him/her to watch you perform or so that you could visit their campus and meet with them.

I. State who you are a Varsity player and you are currently looking for a school that will match your academic and athletic goals. Mention the school specifically. Be sure to make it sound like this school is your first choice (even if it isn't).
II. Introduce your athletic highlights including team, conference, and state recognition. Describe your involvement in your teams outside of school. Advertise your versatility by listing the number of different positions you can play/offer. *Remember, in college, YOU don't get to pick where you want to play.
III. Research the team at this school and in this paragraph, show off your knowledge about the type of program they have. Are they looking for your position? Are they coming off of a winning season that you would like to continue? Are they new or just starting? Explain to the coach how you believe you can make an immediate impact.
IV. Close by asking to meet with them or set up a visit. Tell them that you are going to include your schedule and/or video. Invite them to see you play. Give them a REASON to see you play...state finals, arch rival game, important meet. And of course, close by telling them that you'll be in touch within the week.

3. Write a thank you letter to an employer for meeting with you despite the fact that you did not get the job you wanted.

I. Thank them for seeing you two days ago and make sure you sound really appreciative.
II. Mention a few specifics about the meeting from the other day, items you spoke about, ideas that you think you could really help implement. Explain that you are more excited than ever for the opportunity.
III. Tell them that while you are hopeful that they will see you as the best candidate, you also want to ask them to hold onto your application in case you don't get this job but one opens up in the future.

4. Write a thank you letter to a former teacher-not one at Concord.

I. Explain to them how they crossed your mind recently.
II. Go back and tell a story about a really great memory you have about your time with them.
III. Talk about how their impact on you has made a difference in you today.
IV. Invite them to your graduation, promise to stop by sometime, encourage them to keep in touch...close the best way that you think is appropriate for the relationship you have with this person.