Excerpts from Cole Arthur Riley, Black Litguries

Before you ask AAAS for a letter of recommendation...!

Is it time to ask for a letter of recommendation? You feel like your AAAS faculty know you academically and professionally well?

We are excited to support you with your endeavors! Do note that AAAS faculty frequently get asked to write letters of recommendations for students. To facilitate and balance the labor along with their current workload, we listed helpful information to include in your initial ask. Be mindful that each faculty member may have different requirements when you ask for a letter but generally do give faculty at least 2 weeks notice prior to the submission deadline. Review the below to set yourself and the recommender up for success!


  • Deadline to submit the recommendation (date and time)
  • Purpose and information about the recommendation (scholarship, fellowship, job, graduate school, travel/conference funds, membership to an organization, etc.). Do share links related to what you are applying to
  • What capacity you know the faculty member (“I took XYZ course with you Fall/Spring YEAR”)
  • Anything specific to highlight in the letter (e.g., skills, interests, experience)
  • How to submit the recommendation (via a link, email, postal mail)
  • Who to address the letter to (“Dear Search Committee,” a specific person, “To Whom It May Concern”)
  • Why you want to apply for what you need the recommendation for
  • Attach a resume, CV, personal statement, and/or cover letter so your recommender can also use that to strengthen your letter