How to Request a College Recommendation Letter
Homeschool high school students who are headed to college will eventually need the famous recommendation letters for their applications. I don’t know how many hundreds of college recommendation or reference letters I’ve written over the past 20 years- it’s been a lot.
I’ve experienced that it is a joy to write some of them. The recommendation letters that I enjoy writing are for students who earned that recommendation (were good students and good contributors to culture and community).
I’ve experienced that I have to really reach down into God-given grace to write some of them. These were students who simply figured they were entitled to whatever they wanted, whenever they wanted it. (Ever meet a teen like that?)
So, for homeschool high schoolers who want to receive recommendation letters from a writer who is EXCITED to give that letter, here’s how to request a college recommendation letter:
*Ask if the person would be a recommender
*Use the word “Please”
*Give plenty of time (at least 2 weeks)
*For paper recommendations, give a self-addressed, stamped envelope
*For online recommendations, provide any special information that person might need to know (“Watch for email from SendEdu, CommonApplication, etc). If applicable, make sure you are listing them in the correct category: guidance, teacher, etc.
*Give a fact sheet of courses, accomplishments, activities that you’ve done in high school to help jog the writer’s memory (it’s easy for writers to forget important things)
*If the writer is running late, don’t get irritated. Simply contact them and ask if there is anything else he/she needs and if there’s anything you can do to help them so that they have time to write the letter
*Be sure to send a thank you when the college notifies you that all the recommendations are in.
Now you pray and wait!
While you’re waiting, make the most of your senior year with some good life-prep courses like our FREE apologetics presentations (no sweat, interesting!), Philosophy in 4 Questions (fun, life-prep thinking skills) and Psychology from a Christian Perspective (you’ll be glad you did this course).