Asking For A Letter Of Recommendation


How to Ask for a
Scholarship Letter of Recommendation
Asking for a Letter of Recommendation
Read the scholarship application to determine the correct person to ask for a Letter of
Recommendation. A Recommender should be someone who knows you personally and can
speak about your academics, ethics, or accomplishments. When you identify the Recommender,
contact them and schedule a time to meet and discuss the scholarship criteria. Be sure to make
your request two to three weeks before you need to submit the scholarship application.
Prior to meeting with your Recommender, review the Student Checklist and gather the
necessary documents. Be conscious that instructors, counselors, and administrators are busy
people and deal with many students; be considerate of their work schedule and availability. They
know how important a scholarship is to you and consider the request seriously. You want to give
your Recommender enough time and information to write you a favorable reference letter.
Who should you ask for a Letter of Recommendation?
Before requesting a Letter of Recommendation, review the scholarship application for specifics on
who you should ask, for example:
Tri-City Hospital Auxiliary Nursing Scholarship states: “Recommendation from an Instructor”
The San Diego Foundation Scholarship states: “Ask two people who know you well, but are not related
to you: teachers, counselors, religious leaders, coaches, and employers are good choices as they can
comment on your overall character, achievement and promise.”
What should be the focus of the Letter of Recommendation?
Refer to the scholarship application to determine the eligibility criteria. Is the scholarship based on
academics, a specific major, financial need, a hardship you overcame, etc.? For example:
Tri-City Hospital Auxiliary Nursing Scholarship states: “minimum 3.0 GPA, and demonstrates
motivation, determination and financial need.”
Jack Kent Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship states: “Academic achievement, critical thinking
ability, breadth of interests and activities, will to succeed, and financial need.
Soroptimist Women’s Scholarship asks, “Does the applicant demonstrate a strong sense of
responsibility, strength in character, have clear goals, and would be an inspiration to others?
Official Letterhead
Letters of Recommendation should be on official letterhead and signed by the Recommender.
Thank You Letter
Always send a handwritten thank you note to your Recommender. A “thank you” helps maintain a
positive, professional relationship with the Recommender. Also, be sure to let them know if you
receive the scholarship, we love to celebrate success.
Keep a copy of all the scholarships you apply for as a reference in case you do not receive the
scholarship this year, you can reapply the next year.


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