Letters of Recommendation for a Nomination

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by FastFalcon7, Apr 12, 2015.

  1. FastFalcon7

    FastFalcon7 Member

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    Both my senators and representative have no details concerning what these should be. I've figured out how they should be addressed. However, could someone give me a set of instructions for the teachers/coaches I am asking for these letters. What should/should not include. What should be the main focus.

    Also, none of the senators/reps mention anything about confidentiality. Am I allowed to read these letters?

    Anything regarding format/details is useful!

    Thanks everyone!
     
  2. haleym

    haleym Member

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    Launching point: why do you deserve a nomination/appointment, and what have they seen you do that proves this? What is it that sets you above the competition?
    A letter of recommendation is just that- they are recommending you for a nomination and for USAFA/other Academies. I've never heard of any sort of confidentiality barrier, so you should be able to read them over before you turn them in. If it is instructed that the letters are confidential, though, follow the instructions.
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2015
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  3. Gballer

    Gballer Member

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    A couple of our MOC require that the letters be mailed in by the individuals writing them, the other requires that the letter be sealed and then signed across the seal to prevent peeking! Our MOC have very strict guidelines regarding the applications…might be worth contacting their offices.
     
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  4. frenzymando

    frenzymando Banned

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    The letter of recommendation forms for my senators and MOC state the following:

    Please place this completed form in a sealed envelope, signed across the flap, and return it to the applicant for inclusion in the complete application packet. Thank you.

    Please place completed form (and additional sheet, if applicable) in a sealed envelope signed across the flap, and return it to the applicant for inclusion in his/her application packet. Again, thank you for your time.

    Please return this form in a sealed and signed envelope directly to the applicant as soon as possible.

    I would guess OP's senators and MOC would like something similar. If you could read the letters of recommendation, you could just get them from like 20 people and choose the ones that wrote the best...

    A little bit off topic but does anyone know if who the person you get the letter of recommendation from is taken into account? Will it look better if I choose someone that has known me for 4 years compared to someone that has known me a few months? Do letters of recommendation from high ranking military personnel(Chief Master Sergeants, Lt Colonels, etc.) hold higher weight?
     
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  5. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    I would double check for sure that they don't have anything specific they want because all of my MOCs had very specific instructions and specific forms to be filled out and the option that the person could include additional info with that sheet.
     
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  6. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    Also, most recommend actions ask you to sign a paper excluding you from the right to read them and you can either sign it or not. I also had to sign those for all my MOCs
     
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  7. frenzymando

    frenzymando Banned

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    Unfortunately, not all MOCs and senators have very specific instructions. I saw the senator from North Dakota's instructions for seeking a nomination and all it says is have three letters of recommendation.
     
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  8. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    Oh, well in that case OP, simply have three people (teacher, boss, pastor, or coach, someone who knows you really know you well) write letters for you. I would provide those people with your Resume and accomplishments so they know what they can hit on in the letter. I gave all my recommenders folders with everything they needed. I also only needed like 3 but I asked 6 people to write letters just in case they took to long or didn't finish in time. I would also have them write it, put it in an envelope, seal it, and signature the back flap to ensure the integrity of the recommendation. That's a suggestion I make simply because I was required to have my submitted that way and it looks good.
     
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  9. haleym

    haleym Member

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    Not all offices have the same standards. Even interviews are conducted differently at different places. It's up to the OP to see exactly what the rules are regarding the subject. If they say that there isn't confidentiality, then why wouldn't you read it over so you're putting your best foot forward?
     
  10. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    My ALO told me specifically NOT to have people write me letters based on their status. Pick people that know you very well and can speak positively on your behalf. They'll notice if you picked someone to fluff your packet. At least that is the advice I was given and I followed it.
     
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  11. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    I see what you're saying. It is good to read them if you can. I had extra letters so I read a few of them but I didn't read any of the ones that I sent on account of I signed papers saying I wouldn't.
     
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  12. waiting game

    waiting game Member

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    In our experience (my son is class of 2018), you want your letters to be from people who know you very well, from some position of respect/authority, but also carry some weight when it comes to really knowing what type of student will succeed as a cadet. In that regard, a high ranking officer you have known for a few months in a legitimate context is probably going to be a more powerful letter than a family friend who has known you since birth. That's not fluffing your application.
    It also is good in any application to have a variety of source "types," such as a pastor, a teacher and a coach or boss, for example, (rather than three teachers) since they will speak to different strengths.
    For what it's worth, DS used the same letters for USAFA / USNA as he did for the MOCS. He received all three nominations, and appointments to both Academies.
     
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  13. kphopeful2019

    kphopeful2019 Member

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    Mine requested certain ones, however some do not. I would most definitely recommend one teacher and/or guidance counselor letter as they will be able to brag on your Academic resume. As for the other letters I would find someone who knows you really well to write it (preferably not an immediate family member (they don't like that because it appears that they write a letter just cuz you're family). Stories always help FYI. My friend wrote mine and told an amazing story that gave them a good feel about who I truly was. Ultimately the goal of the letter is to do the following: not only to reinforce your academic criterion (grades etc) but also to give the selection board some feel about who you really are as a person and help to set you apart from other candidates.
     
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  14. afmom2020

    afmom2020 Member

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    Again, different standards apply. My DD's MOC all specified which teachers/guidance counselor/coach needed to write the letters. You couldn't pick at all.
     
  15. FastFalcon7

    FastFalcon7 Member

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    Less about who the letters are from. I can get a wide variety. I'm looking more for content and form then anything else. However, thank you for all the great responses!
     
  16. RogersCO'19

    RogersCO'19 Member

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    Like I said just give them your resume and list of awards/accomplishments so they can pull from that in the letter, ask them to maybe touch on a time you showed leadership and how you work with others possibly. Just make sure if there aren't any guidelines other than picking three people, just chose people who will present you well in a letter and know you well.
     

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