Letters of Recommendation Format?

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by Rodion, Sep 11, 2015.

  1. Rodion

    Rodion Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2015
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    5
    Hello,

    I am helping my son obtain 3 letters of recommendation from people he knows. One of the common questions they ask us is "what format do they want it in?" I know they want people who know him well, and they do, but people are not sure what they should write or areas they should focus on.

    Are there any "sample" letters of recommendation I could forward to them to help them get a start?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks!
     
  2. USAFA83GradWife

    USAFA83GradWife Member

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2013
    Messages:
    1,115
    Likes Received:
    564
    The letters for my DD were 3 totally different formats. It's personal preference. :)

    I think probably the best advice - don't talk about grades, performance in school, or anything that is already on the application. That's just redundant UNLESS there's a really good example that reinforces an aspect of the application that you feel is very important.

    Focus on the intangibles: examples of integrity, selflessness, service to community, etc. Discuss why the candidate is a good fit for the academy & give concrete examples --- make sure that the writer discuss what he has witnessed. That makes for a stronger recommendation than saying "I feel" or "I think".
     
    Badge250 likes this.
  3. Badge250

    Badge250 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    Messages:
    129
    Likes Received:
    85
    Our son received 3 great letters of recommendation a couple years ago. All three were different in style and format. They were all alike in what they conveyed. The 3 individuals knew my son well and had worked with him in some capacity. Two of the letters were very professional in format, grammar, etc. But the one letter that stands out to me was written by a man who was drafted and served as a Marine in Vietnam. He worked in a factory for 30+ years. His letter was neatly typed but was not all that "profession" nor was his grammar. But it talked about how he had worked along side my son in church missions projects and about how he was in charge of about 50 workers in his factory and would not hesitate to put my son in charge of a crew. It was a wonderful and sincere endorsement from someone who knew him well for many years and had spent time working with him and serving the community with him. Rodion, I hope your son has found those types of individuals to write his letters and just encourage them to write about his qualities through their personal experience and relationship with him. Wish you the best !
     
  4. Rodion

    Rodion Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2015
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    5
    Thanks for the advice. It seems pretty good. I will pass this on to the people writing the recommendation. Looking at your tag line, it seems your family are overachievers when it comes to service academies. That's great. :)
     
    USAFA83GradWife and Badge250 like this.
  5. Rodion

    Rodion Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2015
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    5
    Thanks for the advice. My son went to several mission projects as well. One to the Czech Republic where he saw first hand the ravages of communism and how it affected the people. Considering the present climate, I wonder if elaborating on church related service projects might actually hurt him? I do think your son was lucky to have a Marine, who knew him well, write a recommendation. Something genuine always trumps sophistication, in my opinion. Thanks again!
     
    Badge250 likes this.

Share This Page