Letters of Recommendation
Asking for letters of recommendation can be a daunting task, especially when you don’t know where to start. The most important thing to do when asking for letters of recommendation is to give your recommender ample time to write the letter. The best way to start is to identify a few people who you think could provide a strong recommendation for you. This could include professors, advisors, supervisors, or coaches who have worked closely with you and can speak to your qualifications for the program or scholarship you are applying for. Once you’ve identified your potential recommenders, it’s important to reach out to them in a professional manner. You should start by writing an email or letter of request. In the letter, explain why you are asking for the letter, and provide the recommender with all the relevant information they will need to write the letter. This should include a copy of your resume, a brief description of the program or scholarship you are applying for, and the deadline by which the letter must be completed. It’s also a good idea to provide the recommender with a sample letter of recommendation, if possible. Once you’ve sent the initial request, you should follow up with the recommender to ensure that they received your request. This can be done via email or phone. If you don’t hear back from the recommender after a few days, it’s a good idea to reach out again. It’s also important to give your recommender a few weeks to write the letter. This will give them time to think about what to write and to make any necessary revisions. When asking for a letter of recommendation, it’s also important to be respectful and considerate of the recommender’s time. If the recommender agrees to write you a letter, be sure to thank them and follow up with them to make sure they have everything they need to write the letter. If necessary, you can also provide additional information or answer any questions they may have. Finally, make sure to provide your recommender with a stamped and addressed envelope, as well as any other materials they may need to submit the letter. This will make the process much simpler for the recommender, and will ensure that the letter is delivered on time. Asking for letters of recommendation can be intimidating, but following these steps can help make the process much easier. As long as you’re respectful and considerate of your recommender’s time, you should have no trouble getting the letters you need to apply for the program or scholarship of your choice.
For another perspective, we asked Judge Josh at Outlaw Student the same question — here’s what he said: https://www.outlawstudent.com/2010/11/letters-of-reference/