What was your favorite class in high school? What class did you do best in? Who was your favorite teacher? How well do you know your guidance counselor? Who knows you the best (both adults and fellow students)? Who will write you the best recommendation?
These are questions to answer now! Once you have your answers, make a list of the people who would be your best recommenders.
After identifying your best recommenders, ask them if they are willing to write you a letter of recommendation. Ask in particular if they will write you a strong one. If they can’t, see if there’s someone on your list who can.
Teachers will appreciate having as long as possible to work on your LORs. Get a leg up by approaching them now!
If you remember particular instances where you demonstrated your intelligence, creativity, responsibility, or other great qualities, don’t be shy about reminding your recommenders about those instances. You can even give them a list of things you think they might want to cover in their letters. The best letters tell stories, and you probably remember those stories better than anyone else!
Examples of things you might want to share with the people writing your letters of recommendation:
- Copies of your best papers in their class
- Copies of your creative writing
- Notes about particular contributions you made in class
- A list of your activities and accomplishments
- Your transcript
- Your student resume (yes you should have one!)
Any help you can give your recommenders, whether it’s giving them plenty of time or helping them with material to put in the letter, will generally be appreciated and will make for a stellar LOR!
The benefit to you, besides great LORs, is that when December rolls around, you won’t be biting your nails worrying whether your letters will be in by deadline.
That’s worth a bit of thought and action now, isn’t it?