Letters of Recommendation
Quick word on Letters of Recommendations - YES it is that time you need to get them
Get letters of recommendation
Procrastination often strikes students who are asking for teacher recommendations. Don’t be shy. The teachers know you’ll be coming. The greatest sin is to wait until the last minute.
Choose Teachers Carefully
Don’t pick the teachers who gave you an easy “A”, rather go for the ones who you worked the hardest for, who know you the best and for whom you did your best work.
Check the requirements of the colleges, some will only require one
Be sure to let the teachers know of the deadlines.
Ask teachers soon
Mid-September is a good time.
If you want to wait a little longer as you are getting to know a twelfth-grade teacher, that’s fine.
Keep in mind that popular teachers may have twenty kids who ask them for letters. Its better to be the first to ask than the twentieth
Give teacher your resume and best work
Remember when I told you (as a freshman) to save your best work?
Now is the time to dig up the stuff from classes you took with teachers whom you have asked to write recommendations.
A resume may jog their memories about your involvements outside of class
Follow up with your teachers (Politely)
About a week before your first application deadline, follow up with your teachers. Say something like, “Just wanted you to know that I am sending in my application (s)” or “Just wanted to make sure that you have everything you need.” They’ll thank you and maybe even happily tell you that they sent it.
Get an additional letter?
Too many students ask for too many letters of recommendation. An extra one doesn’t help except in the unlikely event that the person can say something
that other recommenders cannot. A letter from a big-shot friend of the family who barely knows you but is an alumni of First Choice U will be worthless.
Can I ask my art teacher?
The teacher you may know best may be your art teacher or your coach and it is natural to wonder if a letter from someone like that would be helpful. The answer is generally “no”. In almost every case, recommendation letters should come from teachers in English, social studies, math, science, or foreign language, with the best combination (where two are required) being one from English teacher and one from either math or science.
Remember to utilize the Common App - this is also a game changer for the your teachers