Message to students and alumni: what information I need to write a recommendation letter for you or, more generally, to serve as your reference

Dear Friends,

I will be glad to serve as your reference and/or write a recommendation letter for you.

For that, please send me the following info by email:

Please send this as plain text part of the message, not as an attachment (and please please not in MS Word).

Please also let me know by when you need this recommendation letter.

After I get this info, we need to set up an appointment and work together, to make sure that I have all the information. It may take up to an hour. My schedule is listed on my website, at http://www.cs.utep.edu/vladik/appointments.html. Once you find a time slot which is convenient for you, let me know, and most probably we will meet at this time. But first I need to get this info from you.

Yours

Vladik

P.S. Some students are somewhat confused about the purpose of a reference, they are under the false impression that all they need is a name of the reference to be placed on their application.

In reality, the main purpose of adding a name of the recommender to the references list is that:

This request may be done differently: However, in both cases, a recommender needs to have all needed information available.

This information needs to be available by the time the name of the student or alumnus submitted to a potential employer -- because sometimes, they call the references right away.

P.P.S. Please see http://www.cs.utep.edu/DeptCS/HowToGetARec.pdf posted on our website on how to get good recommendation letters. You may want to also check http://www.math.hmc.edu/~orrison/teaching/recs.html