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Student in Library

Tips for a Stronger Application

❗ ❗ Begin your application and ask for a reference early to have sufficient time to thoughtfully complete your application by the deadline. ❗ ❗ 



Answer the Question

Identify relevant facts and state core elements of the answer. Do not leave any part of the question unanswered.


When tasked to address a specific question or topic, stick to it. 


Show Alignment

Apply for roles that align with your skills and experiences, and make such competencies clear in your responses. 

Express Yourself

Write compelling essays that show your authentic voice, perspective, and the experiences and influences that have shaped you.   

Send to Someone to Proofread

Have someone else proofread your essay to check the clarity of your ideas as well as spelling and grammar errors. 

Stick to a Deadline

Create a timeline to finish your first draft that includes time for someone to proofread and to make your revisions.

Keep Your Answer Within the Word Count

Answer each and every aspect of the essay question to the best of your ability within the word limit provided.




Identify a potential reference who would be able to make a strong case for you to pursue the HABA internship.

Pick a reference who knows you and can speak to your character and abilities, especially in academic and/or professional settings.  Choose the person carefully to ensure that they can write on your behalf in a timely manner. 


Ask for the reference letter well before the application deadline.

Give your reference plenty of time to write a letter for you. Ask if they would be able to write you a strong letter and will have the time to do so. A rushed letter may not be as compelling as one that is written with time for reflection. Additionally, a potential letter writer may decline your request and you want to have plenty of time to find an alternative recommender.

Have a conversation with your potential reference first.

Provide your reference with contextual information about yourself such as a copy of your resume, a draft of your questions, or details about your future goals. Letters written specifically for your HABA internship application tend to be stronger than general reference letters.

Inform your reference of the online process of submitting their letter and the deadlines for submission.

Once you enter your reference's information in the application system, an email will be sent to them with instructions. However, it is good practice to be clear with your reference the deadline for submission of their letter.


Remind your Reference

Remind your reference of the application deadline.




Provide Relevant Information

Concisely state information and experiences on your resume that are relevant to the position that you are applying to demonstrate that you have the necessary interests, skills, and experiences for the role. Keep your resume no longer than 2 pages.


List Accomplishments Not Responsibilities

List the things you did, how well you did them, and your results. Highlight key achievements within the context of your responsibilities, and qualify your results whenever possible.

Size and Font Consistency

Review your resume to ensure that the font and size remains consistent throughout the document.




Your transcript does not have to be an official university copy.

There is no minimum GPA requirement.

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