Bad News Letter Assignment

English W231: Professional Writing Skills
Good News and Bad News Correspondence Assignment
Bad News Letter
You are the Administrative Assistant to Gerhardt Goldberg, President of Goldberg Digital
Domains. Roughly a month ago, the firm announced an internship to be awarded to an
advanced undergraduate student, one that would offer the successful applicant an opportunity
to work side by side with the President in many facets of the company’s administration.
Consequently, requirements are rigorous, and many otherwise exceptional applicants will have
to be turned down in selecting the most promising candidate.
Eveline Kathcart is one of those otherwise exceptional applicants. Write a letter, on behalf of
Gerhardt Goldberg (not as Gerhardt Goldberg), telling Eveline that she is not a finalist for the
internship. The primary reason for Eveline’s rejection is that she is a first-semester junior,
whereas the majority of applicants had significantly higher class standing (and therefore more
experience). Use your best judgment to determine what the essential information of this letter
is and what else you might say in accomplishing the letter’s overall purpose. You are writing
the letter as though it would be printed on company stationery, which includes the company’s
letterhead, title, and address. (In other words, assume that these will be on the letter without
you having to provide them.) Use your own campus address as Eveline’s receiving address (also
called the inside address).
Good News Letter
Everything in the above scenario remains true, except that Eveline is, in fact, a finalist for the
internship. Write her a letter telling her so. In addition, tell her that you, the Administrative
Assistant, would like her to call you upon receiving the letter to schedule the next phase of the
application process: an interview with President Goldberg. (As the initial internship
announcement requested, Eveline has already sent your office a letter of application, a
transcript, and a sample of her written work.) Your telephone number is 727-340-3019.
Both letters are due at the beginning of class, Wednesday, 9/11.
Note 1: Because this is a short assignment, you do not need to bring it in a manila envelope, as
per syllabus instructions about handing in your work. Simply print out the Rubric from the
course webpage and staple it to the front of this assignment.
Note 2: Because format, punctuation, and grammatical correctness are crucial to effective
professional communication, any letter with two or more errors in usage (including spelling)
will receive a zero. I know, that sounds harsh. But it’s tough love.