Knockglock wrote: legalized wrote:
malfurion wrote:Maybe I'm off base here, but I couldn't imagine trying to tell a recommender what to write in their letter like that. Seems like it would come across as insulting at worst, and high-maintenance (?) at best. If the person is a professor, they've done this many times before. By "whatever needed" I would assume he was talking about the specifics of what forms he needed to fill out, whether he needed to submit via email/website/hardcopy, etc.
Law school recommendations want more than regular recommendations. I find that excessive as well but since I have to waive my right to see it, I am going to make sure they are very clear on what it is suppose to address, because if not it could be about ANYthing.
And as I said, I briefly covered this in my conversation with them, and told them I would send the details of it (including things I am sure are not common such as signing across the seal of the envelope, which LSAC requires) to their email...that way they know they don't have to remember all that in their heads. My research showed that professors actually want you to make this as EASY for them as possible, and as I was out of school for a little while now...I can't expect them to to just manufacture greatness off the tops of their heads without a well-defined context.
Matter of fact despite all the detail one of them kept playing phone tag with me to get straight exactly how he was suppose to sign/seal/mail cause he didn't want to screw it up.
I can't see what they write, and my gpa is above a 3.0 but low for law school purposes so everything else needs to be very nice.
And two of them are foreigners like me, and one is is a prof that doesn't really act like a prof. (seems kind of younger than the other PhD holders)...they tend to be ok with less PC pussyfooting around subjects. Trust me I know my audience, they are fine with how I talk....so no they won't be insulted, if anything it will be nice that I save them the time and energy of having to brainstorm several paragraphs of praise.
Diff. strokes for diff. folks though. The OP was clearly completely lost and I know this is one area no one gives concrete answers, and I don't like that. So I helped him the way I helped myself. I don't have to worry what my LORs say because I made it easy for them, and I only asked professors in classes where there are clearly examples of me standing out from the crowd. I was either one of a few As or the best student in the class.
And, I addressed what materials need to be included in your request to the professor...and even drew attention to it (last paragraph of the letter, and in the email they would have seen the .zip file anyway to know I sent a bunch of stuff). So I have answered everything he needed.
For me at least, this and your previous post were EXTREMELY helpful. Thank you so much! I was wondering if you wouldn't mind sharing with me (in pm if you like) the full letter since I believe you said that was an excerpt. Also, could you possibly go into detail with what materials you included in your request to your professor.
Thanks again, I really appreciate it! I was feeling a little lost and confused concerning the whole LOR aspect of my application, but you have really helped me out.
I know, and you're welcome.
@ smitty: congrats on HYS even though it was a brag. But the example lines you gave ask the professor to talk about the specifics by email or in person and leaves it up to the professor...hello, instead of asking if he wants specifics by email, I just gave him specifics after making sure to talk by phone first and ok it there. How is what you are suggesting any different from what I already did, aside from dragging out the process by a few more emails? It's like people who leave a voicemail saying they have something to tell you...why leave a voicemail if you not going to state why it is you actually called? Maybe that roundabout way worked for you, but then again maybe you got into HYS on the strength of GPA/LSAT alone and had mediocre LORs, we don't know. If you are giving them the details in an extra email or in another conversation in person as your example suggests, that is actually in the end the same as me talking to them on the phone first and giving them the details in that first email. Either way the points in my email have to be discussed, yes? So I get to the point ASAP. Again, keep in mind a live phone conversation including all the general small talk and catching up was done before that email you're reading. So take it in context they knew a detailed email was coming.
Law schools, from the research I've done on ls LORs, have specific things they ARE looking for in the LORs, not just that you have one. So yeah, you can have an ok one that's as generic as that letter you put up there, or you can have one that has some fire under its tail because you gave the professor some scope and an end goal to work with... Instead of emailing to ask to come by and talk to them about if they will write it, track down their phone number or office hours and get them to ok doing your letter live. Then email confirming that and giving them the extra materials they should have. Not to mention creating a paper trail for yourself in case you need to figure out who you asked, who you sent what materials, and how long it's been since you asked them. I know you men don't walk around with planners (many of you, anyway) so how else you going to track who got what if you can't search your email inbox and check dates and attachments?
I gave them what I want in my LOR...no vagueness or wishywashy-ness. If it's high maintenance that's how it is but then again this whole ls process is high maintenance, and I don't want easygoing LORs, I want high maintenance LORs. Some of us need to do more work to stand out in this process than do others. People can of course adjust what I said according to how they feel their audience will take it but if you are cool with the professor in the first place and simply make him aware that you are going to send a detailed explanation of what the letter should have since you won't be reading it over, they will not be caught off guard by it.
And we are future lawyers since when is there such a thing as too much detail? lol
Back to knockglock. Click the hyperlink and check out what they say (the one in my post)...what I sent as my "LOR packet":
Attached in a .zip folder are my transcripts, my secondary essay explaining why I am choosing law (the main essay, the personal statement, is still in the works), my resume, and two of my final projects from the [INSERT SEMESTER HERE] of [INSERT YEAR HERE]
The final project is any term report or individual case study you had to do in their class at the end of the semester (or even from another class if their class had nothing more than an in-class final exam to cap it off). Or any major write-up you had for their class, final or not.
Since some email systems reject emails over a certain size, I recommend putting them in one folder by themselves, then making it a .zip folder so you can attach the folder as if it's one file.
And just like when mailing off any other important document(s), copy yourself on it so you have it exactly as you sent it to them, and in case they don't get the email or accidentally delete it or what have you.