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College and Career Locker

Letters of Recommendation

Hows and Whys of Letters of Recommendation

Letters of recommendation from your teachers and others (coaches, club advisors, religious leaders etc.) are an important part of applications for colleges and universities, as well as for scholarship and/or job application. We want to tell the world how good a student you are, but there are some requirements.  


  • Make a face-to-face request at least 3 weeks before the recommendation due-date.  It is in your best interest to give recommenders the time necessary to write a good letter.


  • Provide recommender with a Brag Sheet. A Brag Sheet is similar to a student resume; it highlights your accomplishments, experiences and employment during high school. It is intended to give the recommender something to draw from while writing your letter of recommendation, although it is also a good tool for you to use as you start writing personal statements and scholarship essays.


  • If you are expecting to need letters of recommendation for multiple institutions (more than one college, scholarship, internship, etc.) it could be best to ask for a more general letter of recommendation that you can use in all situations
    • However there are some cases where institutions will ask that your letters of recommendation include specific information. In this case make sure to provide recommenders with a copy of the request or paperwork from the university, college, scholarship, etc., so the recommender knows which direction their letter should take.


  • Letters should not be from someone related to you.


  • A handwritten thank you note to your recommenders is entirely appropriate and much appreciated!