Need a recommendation letter or a letter of reference for a job, internship, grant, or other program? If you've taken a class of mine and we've otherwise worked together, I am happy for you to ask me to be one of your letter writers.
- Come talk to me or send me an email, letting me know what you're applying for, when the deadlines are, and why you're interested. If you have any questions or concerns, I can offer some advice and also let you know my availability for writing letters.
- Fill out this form once. This form asks for some general info about you, besides what I may already know about you as a student. In your letter, I may want to touch upon other aspects of your life and achievements that are relevant to your application, and it also reminds me of things that I may have forgotten.
- Fill out this form once for each program you're applying to. This assures that I have all your info in one place and can keep track of deadlines more easily.
- If your application requires a personal statement, essay, resume, cover letter, transcript, etc. please upload these in the previous form and/or email me updated versions of these forms as you draft them.
- Remind me! It's helpful if you send me reminder emails as the deadlines approach, especially if you've asked me way in advance. Send me an email 2 weeks, 1 week, and 2 days ahead of the deadline until you hear that I've submitted it. Don't worry, this is helpful not annoying.
- Keep in touch! Let me know where you got in, where you got interviews, how the program went, etc.
- No need to give me a thank you gift for letters - this is part of my job! A thank you note, email, or card is always welcome!
- Give me as much advance notice as possible, ideally a month or more. That said, do feel free to ask if last-minute opportunities come up, especially if I’ve written for you before.
- Start early, particularly for grad school applications. If you’d like me to help edit your personal statement, make sure there’s plenty of time for a few drafts to go back and forth.
- Don’t worry about asking for too many letters – once I’ve written one, the rest are easy, especially if they’re for the same type of program.
- I’ll do my best to keep track of deadlines, but reminders are always helpful — check in about a week before you letter is due to make sure it’s on my radar.
- I can write the strongest letters for people who’ve actively participated in class discussions, attended office hours regularly, done research with me, served as a TA or grader, turned in outstanding work, and/or shown resourcefulness in overcoming challenges in class. It’s fine if you struggled in my class; if you came to office hours, worked hard, and showed improvement I can still write you a good letter. What’s most important is that I’ve gotten to know you so I have something substantive to say.