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Recommender’s #1 Guide: How to Write an Outstanding Letter of Recommendation

Has one of your students asked you to write a letter of recommendation on their behalf? If you’re unsure of how to convey the student’s strengths effectively and compellingly, read our complete guide to learn the do’s and don’t’s of writing a stand out letter of recommendation—complete with sample letters!

The Importance of a Letter of Recommendation

With college admissions becoming increasingly competitive, letters of recommendation are an incredibly important piece of a student’s applicant profile. For schools with competitive admissions processes, letters of recommendation can help highly qualified students stand out amongst the other applicants who have similar grades and test scores. Schools that have a holistic admissions philosophy rely on letters of recommendation to paint a picture of a student as a whole person, rather than focusing strictly on the numbers. Students are more than their GPA and a standardized test score—it is important for admission officers to know about their stories, attributes, and skills.

A recommender’s letter can showcase and highlight these qualities, paint an overall picture of who the student truly is, and demonstrate why they will be successful on a particular college campus.

Admissions officers value teachers’ insights and impressions of a student and want to know how the student contributed to their class in a meaningful way. Recommendation letters should offer the admission officers an insider’s perspective into the teacher’s class and help the officer learn about how the student performed. The letter should explain how the student took advantage of the opportunities that the class had to offer and how he or she enriched the classroom community.

No letter of recommendation can address every facet of a students’ experiences, talents, and characteristics—and that’s okay! Whether you are a coach, mentor, school counselor, employer, or teacher, focus on the aspects of the student which you can attest to with the most enthusiasm, specificity, and confidence. The letter should be memorable, and showcase a student’s personal qualities like intellectual curiosity, creativity, initiative.

Did the student make an effort to stay after tennis practice to retrieve scattered tennis balls? Did they help to motivate their classmates to be more involved on school spirit days or increase their peers’ attendance at sports events? Did you notice them sitting next to new or struggling classmates during lunch? Did they make an effort to stay after class and discuss the lesson with you or take advantage of study sessions? These are all anecdotes that will help the admissions committee to get a more personal and detailed understanding of who the student is. The recommendation letter should help the student stand out from the others and reveal aspects of their personality and work ethic that may not always be apparent on paper.

Do’s and Don’ts of Recommendation Writing

After receiving a request for a letter of recommendation, it is helpful to set up an appointment to meet with the student and ask about their specific purpose—why they are going to college, where they are applying, what is their intended major, when is their first deadline, etc…

In order to make your letter of recommendation personalized while encouraging the student to take ownership of their application process and content, ask them to complete a brag sheet and have them bring it with them to the appointment. Go through the brag sheet with the student, discussing specific elements of their application, experiences, and skillset that the student would like for you to attest to in your letter.

When writing letters of recommendation,

DO:

N

Comment on the student’s:

  • Ability to communicate
  • Self-confidence
  • Self-advocacy skills
  • Initiative
  • Ability to handle conflict
  • Leadership
  • Flexibility
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Competitiveness
  • Goal Achievement

As the recommender, your primary goal is to add personal context to the student’s resume, GPA, and transcript. In your letter, try to focus on the elements of the student’s personality, abilities, and distinct qualities that allow(ed) them to contribute to the classroom culture, enrich discussions, persevere through difficulty, and connect their experiences outside of the classroom with their performance within the classroom. The more you can attest to the student’s strengths, the stronger your recommendation letter will be.

N

Aim for quality, not quantity.

You can’t speak to every aspect of a student’s skill or community involvement—and that’s okay! Choose the attributes and experiences on the student’s brag sheet that you feel most equipped to speak to and elaborate upon.

N

Be specific.

Do your best to speak specifically to a student’s talents and accomplishments.

When writing letters of recommendation,

DON’T

Add a college name.

The student’s counselor will send your letter of recommendation to multiple schools—be sure that you are being specific about the student’s capabilities while being general about the program that the student is applying for.

Repeat their resume.

The admissions officer will be able to get a sense of the student’s leadership and community involvement from the student’s resume and activities list—think about how your letter of recommendation can supplement and contextualize rather than regurgitate the information in these documents. What qualities did the student embody as a leader, worker, or community member? Give specific and unique insights into the student’s qualities and capabilities.

Recycle letters.

The best recommendation letters are those that are personal and specific, so avoid using boilerplate or recycled language in letters for multiple students. Use the student’s brag sheet as the template for your content rather than relying on generic language.

Write in depth about the student’s school and its programs.

Colleges will have access to a school’s profile (like this one, for example) and specific pedagogy and course offerings, so you don’t need to spend unnecessary time explaining the particular structure of the school or program. Focus more on your individual experience with the student in your letter.

Outline for Recommendation Writing

When writing student letters of recommendation, the following suggestions can help you to ensure that you are including the most important information and organizing your thoughts about the student in a clear and effective way. First and foremost, be sure that you type your letter of recommendation on official letterhead from the school at which you teach.

Your voice as a teacher carries immense weight in a student’s application materials, and a strong letter of recommendation can truly separate a student’s application from those of thousands of other applicants. Taking the time to craft a meaningful and personal letter will have a considerable impact on the student’s future educational goals!

INTRO:

  • Begin the letter by describing the capacity in which you know the student and how long you have known them.

Example: Jane has been a student in my English class for the past three years.

 

BODY:

  • Describe their performance or study habits in your class and their character.
  • Include specific anecdotes, stories, or examples about the student. You can even include quotes from their original work.
    • If you have taught the student, consider including quotations from a particularly strong paper or project.
    • If you coached the student, think of stories or circumstances that exemplify the student’s leadership, sportsmanship, or work ethic.
    • If you employed or mentored the student, what particular aspects of the student’s personality or character uniquely contributed to the team or the culture in the workplace?
  • Describe a challenging project or unit that they completed in detail, and write about how they surmounted the challenges that accompanied their accomplishment. Use both your own experience with the student, as well as the student’s response to the brag sheet to complete this portion.
    • Did the student struggle with a particular assignment or activity? What was the source of their struggle?
    • How did they overcome this challenge? Be specific—did they seek help through tutoring? Did they pursue a different research method? Did they use their interests to take the project in a creative direction?
  • Stress the student’s potential and why they are qualified for admission to the college.

 

CONCLUSION:

  • End by emphasizing the student’s qualifications and excellence.
  • Some examples include:
    • “Insert name here” carries my strongest recommendation.
    • I have absolute confidence that “insert name here” will excel in college.
    • I wholeheartedly recommend “insert name here” for admission to your program.
    • I believe in “insert name here” and know she will be successful in college.
    • I recommend “insert name here” with enthusiasm to your program.
  • State what the student will bring to the college and summarize their qualities. You can end by writing that you have enjoyed being their teacher and that you will miss them.

Finally, include your title and email in the letter of recommendation and let admission officers know that you welcome their email if they have any follow up questions.

Outline for Recommendation Writing

When writing student recommendations, the following suggestions can help you to ensure that you are including the most important information and organizing your thoughts about the student in a clear and effective way. First and foremost, be sure that you type your recommendation on official letterhead from the school at which you teach.

Your voice as a teacher carries immense weight in a student’s application materials, and a strong recommendation can truly separate a student’s application from those of thousands of other applicants. Taking the time to craft a meaningful and personal recommendation will have a considerable impact on the student’s future educational goals!

INTRO:

  • Begin the letter by describing the capacity in which you know the student and how long you have known them. Ex. Jane has been a student in my English class for the past three years.

 

BODY:

  • Describe their performance or study habits in your class and their character.
  • Include specific anecdotes, stories, or examples about the student. You can even include quotes from their original work.
    • If you have taught the student, consider including quotations from a particularly strong paper or project.
    • If you coached the student, think of stories or circumstances that exemplify the student’s leadership, sportsmanship, or work ethic.
    • If you employed or mentored the student, what particular aspects of the student’s personality or character uniquely contributed to the team or the culture in the workplace?
  • Describe a challenging project or unit that they completed in detail, and write about how they surmounted the challenges that accompanied their accomplishment. Use both your own experience with the student, as well as the student’s response to the brag sheet to complete this portion.
    • Did the student struggle with a particular assignment or activity? What was the source of their struggle?
    • How did they overcome this challenge? Be specific—did they seek help through tutoring? Did they pursue a different research method? Did they use their interests to take the project in a creative direction?
  • Stress the student’s potential and why they are qualified for admission to the college.

 

CONCLUSION:

  • End by emphasizing the student’s qualifications and excellence.
  • Some examples include:
    • “Insert name here” carries my strongest recommendation.
    • I have absolute confidence that “insert name here” will excel in college.
    • I wholeheartedly recommend “insert name here” for admission to your program.
    • I believe in “insert name here” and know she will be successful in college.
    • I recommend “insert name here” with enthusiasm to your program.
  • State what the student will bring to the college and summarize their qualities. You can end by writing that you have enjoyed being their teacher and that you will miss them.

Finally, include your title and email in the letter of recommendation and let admission officers know that you welcome their email if they have any follow up questions.

Example Letter

Sample Outside Letter of Recommendation

This is a sample letter that should only be used for reference and learning purposes and should not be used as a template word for word.

Dear Admissions Committee:

I’m writing to express my wholehearted support of XYZ’s college application. XYZ is an extraordinary young person and I have no doubt that his/her/their skills, ________, and ___________ of character would make him/her/them an asset to your campus.

Over the past couple of years, I have had the privilege of knowing XYZ in multiple capacities. I first met XYZ through ______________________. He/she/they have made quite a name for themself as the only person his/her/their age in the __________________ to have started anything like ________________. For beginners, it’s easy to become disillusioned with the steep learning curve required and give up their efforts to achieve mastery.

XYZ has shown his/her/their remarkable strength of character not just at the local but also at the national level. At the __________, one of XYZ’s competitors ____________________. Throughout the rest of the competition, XYZ stuck by the competitor’s side, helping to _____________________. XYZ’s selflessness, good sportsmanship, and passion for ensuring that young children feel supported in this field are impossible to ignore.

In closing, I’d like to reiterate my strong support for XYZ’s application to your university. He/she/they are a talented young individual driven by a passion for _______________ and for fostering the same passion in younger children in the community. I am confident that XYZ will go on to make a name for himself/herself/themself in whichever areas he/she/they choose to pursue, and the incredible resources offered at your school will surely allow him/her/them to achieve the big dreams he/she/they have.

Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or would like any further information. Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,
(Physically sign your name)
Your name

Example Letter

Sample Outside Letter of Recommendation

This is a sample only for reference and learning purposes and should not be used as a template word for word.

Dear Admissions Committee:

I’m writing to express my wholehearted support of XYZ’s college application. XYZ is an extraordinary young person and I have no doubt that his/her/their skills, ________, and ___________ of character would make him/her/them an asset to your campus.

Over the past couple of years, I have had the privilege of knowing XYZ in multiple capacities. I first met XYZ through ______________________. He/she/they have made quite a name for themself as the only person his/her/their age in the __________________ to have started anything like ________________. For beginners, it’s easy to become disillusioned with the steep learning curve required and give up their efforts to achieve mastery.

XYZ has shown his/her/their remarkable strength of character not just at the local but also at the national level. At the __________, one of XYZ’s competitors ____________________. Throughout the rest of the competition, XYZ stuck by the competitor’s side, helping to _____________________. XYZ’s selflessness, good sportsmanship, and passion for ensuring that young children feel supported in this field are impossible to ignore.
In closing, I’d like to reiterate my strong support for XYZ’s application to your university. He/she/they are a talented young individual driven by a passion for _______________ and for fostering the same passion in younger children in the community. I am confident that XYZ will go on to make a name for himself/herself/themself in whichever areas he/she/they choose to pursue, and the incredible resources offered at your school will surely allow him/her/them to achieve the big dreams he/she/they have.

Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or would like any further information. Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,
(Physically sign your name)
Your name

Example Letter

Sample Outside Letter of Recommendation for a Coach or Mentor

This is a sample letter that should only be used for reference and learning purposes and should not be used as a template word for word.

Dear Admissions Committee:

I have some terrific students at Average High School, but few compare to Student X, both in dedication to their coursework and innate curiosity. I have taught Student X in two classes over the course of their high school years, including Intro to World Literature and British Literature. In both cases, Student X’s intelligence was tempered with kindness and grace. They are thoughtful, modest and considerate. Conscientious about responsibilities, they have an impressive work ethic and are open to learning from others. I am very pleased to present Student X with my strongest recommendation.

The breadth of Student X’s interests is as impressive as their skills and abilities. While they typically consider themselves more proficient in math and sciences than in literature or history, they sought to pursue an area of genuine interest in my classroom. In my Spring semester British Literature course, they brought their interest in biology and their goal of becoming a doctor to the course’s final, completing an outstanding project on medieval medicine and remedies in literature which earned a final grade of A. Their innovative approach to the material and their ability to bring their research in medical science to Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales made the project one of the most interesting and unique projects of the year.

Student X was consistently a leader in class discussions, not only taking initiative to offer insights or pose questions, but also enriching and deepening the quality of discussions. It is rare to find a student who balances the willingness to speak up and the awareness of others who have not yet chimed in, but Student X is one such student. Their thoughtfulness is evident not only in their engagement with the course material, but also in their treatment of their classmates.

In their junior year World Literature course, Student X helped to mediate between viewpoints amidst a heated discussion regarding global politics as the class discussed contemporary Chinese literature. Student X took a stand that was clear yet not dogmatic, and helped those who shared their viewpoint to better understand and consider the opposing argument.

In addition, Student X’s work was marked by a particular diligence and pursuit of excellence. Whether a homework assignment or a final paper, Student X put care and consideration into everything they turned in. It was clear in the quality of their work that they regarded every assignment as an opportunity for continued learning, rather than simply a task for a grade. I could always depend on Student X to bring up meaningful questions and applications in their reading reflection assignments, which they would often bring to class discussions or larger projects.

The true measure of Student X’s genuine love of learning was most evident at the end of class—while they excelled in classroom discussions and assignments, I was perhaps most impressed by their desire to keep the conversation going, often lingering for a few minutes after class with fellow students, asking a final question, mentioning an article they found interesting that related to the discussion, or requesting a book recommendation. This quality in particular warrants my supreme confidence that Student X will excel in your highly competitive academic environment and will bring tremendous life and spirit to your university. I highly recommend to you, Student X.

Sincerely,
Teacher

Example Letter

Sample Outside Letter of Recommendation for a Coach or Mentor

This is a sample only for reference and learning purposes and should not be used as a template word for word.

Dear Admissions Committee:

I have some terrific students at Average High School, but few compare to Student X, both in dedication to their coursework and innate curiosity. I have taught Student X in two classes over the course of their high school years, including Intro to World Literature and British Literature. In both cases, Student X’s intelligence was tempered with kindness and grace. They are thoughtful, modest and considerate. Conscientious about responsibilities, they have an impressive work ethic and are open to learning from others. I am very pleased to present Student X with my strongest recommendation.

The breadth of Student X’s interests is as impressive as their skills and abilities. While they typically consider themselves more proficient in math and sciences than in literature or history, they sought to pursue an area of genuine interest in my classroom. In my Spring semester British Literature course, they brought their interest in biology and their goal of becoming a doctor to the course’s final, completing an outstanding project on Medieval medicine and remedies in literature which earned a final grade of A. Their innovative approach to the material and their ability to bring their research in medical science to Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales made the project one of the most interesting and unique projects of the year.

Student X was consistently a leader in class discussions, not only taking initiative to offer insights or pose questions, but also enriching and deepening the quality of discussions. It is rare to find a student who balances the willingness to speak up and the awareness of others who have not yet chimed in, but Student X is just one such student. Their thoughtfulness is evident not only in their engagement with the course material, but also in their treatment of their classmates. In their junior year World Literature course, Student X helped to mediate between viewpoints amidst a heated discussion regarding global politics as the class discussed contemporary Chinese literature. Student X took a stand that was clear yet not dogmatic, and helped those who shared their viewpoint to better understand and consider the opposing argument.

In addition, Student X’s work was marked by a particular diligence and pursuit of excellence. Whether a homework assignment or a final paper, Student X put care and consideration into everything they turned in. It was clear in the quality of their work that they regarded every assignment as an opportunity for continued learning, rather than simply a task for a grade. I could always depend on Student X to bring up meaningful questions and applications in their reading reflection assignments, which they would often bring to class discussions or larger projects.

The true measure of Student X’s genuine love of learning was most evident at the end of class—while they excelled in classroom discussions and assignments, I was perhaps most impressed by their desire to keep the conversation going, often lingering for a few minutes after class with fellow students, asking a final question, mentioning an article they found interesting that related to the discussion, or requesting a book recommendation. This quality in particular warrants my supreme confidence that Student X will excel in your highly competitive academic environment and will bring tremendous life and spirit to your university. I highly recommend to you, Student X.

Sincerely,
Teacher

Example Letter

Sample Outside Letter of Recommendation for a Teacher

This is a sample letter that should only be used for reference and learning purposes and should not be used as a template word for word.

To whom it may concern:

Student Z was a student in my French classes during their sophomore and junior years, at the 3R and Advanced Language and Culture 4 levels. It is with great pleasure that I recommend them for admission to your institution.

I first met Student Z when they were a freshman in the study hall that I supervised. Unlike other students who saw study hall a “free” period and elected to play games on their smartphone, Student Z stood out as one of the students who used the time wisely, choosing to complete schoolwork or to read a book. Needless to say, I was genuinely happy to recognize their name on my roster the following year. I knew that Student Z would be a hard-working student, and over the next two years, they did not disappoint.

Student Z diligently completed all of their work and – to the extent that their reserved nature allowed – they participated in all classroom activities, including activities that required public speaking. Given their initial fears of presenting in front of a class, I encouraged Student Z to try, but gave them the option of presenting one-on-one if they needed to. Student Z worked through their fears over the course of their time as my student and learned to deliver an excellent performance.

When I asked them about their proudest moment in my class, they wrote about overcoming this fear and working hard to deliver a presentation they were proud of. Student Z is an inspiringly driven individual, who doesn’t shy away from a challenge, but rather works hard to overcome it.

I discovered that Student Z strives when they are given the opportunity to take ownership of their learning when they were enrolled in my Advanced French Language and Culture 4 (ALC4) class. Students were required to contribute to our exploration of Arts in France by identifying a topic of interest and presenting their research to the class. Given their interest in painting, Student Z chose to research pointillism. Driven by their own interest in the subject, Student Z resourcefully used tools on the database to visualize the technique and to research the history of the painting method. They went on to present on the topic and delivered a stellar performance, driven by their enthusiasm for the topic.

I know that as Student Z continues their studies, their spirit and genuine excitement for learning about the topics that interest them, in addition to their drive and resourcefulness, will fuel their academic success.

I am confident that Student Z is ready to take on the rigor and challenges of a collegiate level curriculum. They will undoubtedly continue to push themself in and out of the classroom, continue to grow, and make significant contributions to their community. It is with great pleasure that I recommend them to your university. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have further questions.

Sincerely,
Teacher

Example Letter

Sample Outside Letter of Recommendation for a Teacher

This is a sample only for reference and learning purposes and should not be used as a template word for word.

To whom it may concern:

Student Z was a student in my French classes during their sophomore and junior years, at the 3R and Advanced Language and Culture 4 levels. It is with great pleasure that I recommend them for admission to your institution.

I first met Student Z when they were a freshman in the study hall that I supervised. Unlike other students who saw study hall a “free” period and elected to play games on their smartphone, Student Z stood out as one of the students who used the time wisely, choosing to complete schoolwork or to read a book. Needless to say, I was genuinely happy to recognize their name on my roster the following year. I knew that Student Z would be a hard-working student, and over the next two years, they did not disappoint.

Student Z diligently completed all of their work and – to the extent that their reserved nature allowed – they participated in all classroom activities, including activities that required public speaking. Given their initial fears of presenting in front of a class, I encouraged Student Z to try, but gave them the option of presenting one-on-one if they needed to. Student Z worked through their fears over the course of their time as my student and learned to deliver an excellent performance. When I asked them about their proudest moment in my class, they wrote about overcoming this fear and working hard to deliver a presentation they were proud of. Student Z is an inspiringly driven individual, who doesn’t shy away from a challenge, but rather works hard to overcome it.

I discovered that Student Z strives when they are given the opportunity to take ownership of their learning when they were enrolled in my Advanced French Language and Culture 4 (ALC4) class. Students were required to contribute to our exploration of Arts in France by identifying a topic of interest and presenting their research to the class. Given their interest in painting, Student Z chose to research pointillism. Driven by their own interest in the subject, Student Z resourcefully used tools on the database to visualize the technique and to research the history of the painting method. They went on to present on the topic and delivered a stellar performance, driven by their enthusiasm for the topic. I know that as Student Z continues their studies, their spirit and genuine excitement for learning about the topics that interest them, in addition to their drive and resourcefulness will fuel their academic success.

I am confident that Student Z is ready to take on the rigor and challenges of a collegiate level curriculum. They will undoubtedly continue to push themself in and out of the classroom, continue to grow, and make significant contributions to their community. It is with great pleasure that I recommend them to your university. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have further questions.

Sincerely,
Teacher

Example Letter

Sample Outside Letter of Recommendation for a School Counselor

This is a sample letter that should only be used for reference and learning purposes and should not be used as a template word for word.

Dear Admissions Committee:

I am writing to offer my enthusiastic recommendation of Student Y. The first words that come to mind when trying to describe Student Y include: loyal, goal-oriented, practical, and responsible. Their academic record is an excellent measure of their potential for college. They have taken the most rigorous courses available and have worked hard to consistently earn excellent grades. In keeping up with their success academically, they achieved their goal of being accepted into the National Honor Society and becoming a National Merit Scholar Semifinalist. Student Y’s strengths include dedication and determination, which will help them succeed in college.

Outside of school, Student Y found their passion for ice skating. They only began skating when they were thirteen, but in the past four years, they moved from being a figure skater on a beginner synchronized team to being the team captain and now being a junior coach. Besides working as an ice skating coach, Student Y pursued their love of working with children as a counselor at an ice skating camp for elementary school children and attended a leadership training program at the camp last year. In addition, their hard work is evident not only in their volunteering and academic work, but they also took the initiative to get a job working as a retail sales associate at a winter sports supply company.

Student Y’s ability to excel at school and give back to their community while also expanding their professional horizons is a testimony to their self-motivation and stellar work ethic.

Student Y is goal oriented and has taken a good path in discovering what they enjoy doing academically. Their outstanding personality traits, leadership, and desire to take responsibility will make them an excellent candidate for college. Student Y is well-balanced and handles the demands of work, school, and family effortlessly. I am confident that they will excel in your highly competitive academic environment. I know she will bring tremendous life and spirit to your school. I highly recommend Student Y for admission to your school.

Sincerely,
School Counselor

Note that if there are extenuating circumstances that the student has faced which need to be addressed, include those situations in your letter, being careful not to disclose personal or medical information that would violate the student’s privacy.

Due to medical leave, Student Y was out of school for six weeks. While the absence left Student Y feeling frustrated and behind, they worked diligently to make up the necessary work and catch up to the best of their abilities. Despite the challenge, it became an opportunity for Student Y to demonstrate perseverance and hard work.

Student Y faced a series of family hardships throughout the last few months of their junior year resulting in a new living arrangement. While this led to a significant amount of stress on them, school counselors and teachers worked closely with Student Y to ensure that they were able to manage their personal and professional stress, and although the unexpected move caused their grades to slip slightly, they worked hard to restabilize and manage the personal and academic challenges with self-assuredness.

Example Letter

Sample Outside Letter of Recommendation for a School Counselor

This is a sample only for reference and learning purposes and should not be used as a template word for word.

Dear Admissions Committee:

I am writing to offer my enthusiastic recommendation of Student Y. The first words that come to mind when trying to describe Student Y include: loyal, goal-oriented, practical, and responsible. Their academic record is an excellent measure of their potential for college. They have taken the most rigorous courses available and have worked hard to consistently earn excellent grades. In keeping up with their success academically, they achieved their goal of being accepted into the National Honor Society and becoming a National Merit Scholar Semifinalist. Student Y’s strengths include dedication and determination, which will help them succeed in college.

Outside of school, Student Y found their passion for ice skating. They only began skating when they were thirteen, but in the past four years, they moved from being a figure skater on a beginner synchronized team to being the team captain and now being a junior coach. Besides working as an ice skating coach, Student Y pursued their love of working with children as a counselor at an ice skating camp for elementary school children and attended a leadership training program at the camp last year. In addition, their hard work is evident not only in their volunteering and academic work, but they also took the initiative to get a job working as a retail sales associate at a winter sports supply company. Student Y’s ability to excel at school and give back to their community while also expanding their professional horizons is a testimony to their self-motivation and stellar work ethic.

Student Y is goal oriented and has taken a good path in discovering what they enjoy doing academically. Their outstanding personality traits, leadership, and desire to take responsibility will make them an excellent candidate for college. Student Y is well-balanced and handles the demands of work, school, and family effortlessly. I am confident that they will excel in your highly competitive academic environment. I know she will bring tremendous life and spirit to your school. I highly recommend Student Y for admission to your school.

Sincerely,
School Counselor

Note that if there are extenuating circumstances that the student has faced which need to be addressed, include those situations in your email, being careful not to disclose personal or medical information that would violate the student’s privacy.

Due to medical leave, Student Y was out of school for six weeks. While the absence left Student Y feeling frustrated and behind, they worked diligently to make up the necessary work and catch up to the best of their abilities. Despite the challenge, it became an opportunity for Student Y to demonstrate perseverance and hard work.

Student Y faced a series of family hardships throughout the last few months of their junior year resulting in a new living arrangement. While this led to a significant amount of stress on them, school counselors and teachers worked closely with Student Y to ensure that they were able to manage their personal and professional stress, and although the unexpected move caused their grades to slip slightly, they worked hard to restabilize and manage the personal and academic challenges with self-assuredness.

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