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Ask Alexa – Letters of Recommendation

By Lauren Byerly, Reporter


How do I ask a teacher for a letter of recommendation? It seems really stressful!!

– Anon

Hello Anon!

I totally get the worry. Talking to teachers about letters of recommendation is really scary! They can write letters that will get you into college, and those letters are a super important part of your application!

The first thing I recommend doing is making a resume. This can include any SATs, AP tests, or IB tests you’ve taken, along with other things like awards and extracurriculars (sports, clubs, volunteering, work experience). Then, I would recommend giving them your personal statement. This is the statement you write for the common application! If you’re not using the common application, submit your UC questions or any other written works that you are including in your application! Lastly, answer the questions that Mrs. Cardoza has handed out to all of the seniors to be turned in to the teachers that they are asking for letters of recommendation!

After that comes the scarier part: actually asking the teacher.

Once you have your pretty little packet, drop in your teacher’s room at lunch or after school (whenever your schedules line up). When asking, make sure to do the following things:

  • Actually Ask
    • Some people just say, ‘write my letter of recommendation’ which will sometimes make the teacher write you a not-so-nice letter, and other times will make them outright refuse you. Make sure to be polite!
  • Give your teacher the due date for your letter
    • If you’re applying anywhere early, make sure that your teacher knows that! Otherwise, the school might receive your letter when it’s already too late!
  • Make sure to smile
    • Not only should you ask politely, but you should ask with a good attitude and a bright smile on your face. Make your teacher really want to write that letter for you!

Hope this helps!



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Lauren Byerly, Reporter

Lauren Byerly is a Senior who has been a part of the International Baccalaureate Program since Freshman year. She has been involved with the Cross Country...

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Ask Alexa – Letters of Recommendation