LOR Advice

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
Chalupa Batman
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Joined: Tue Oct 21, 2014 2:48 pm

LOR Advice

Postby Chalupa Batman » Tue Dec 02, 2014 2:23 pm

I go to a big public university and have not had the opportunity to become close with many of my professors over the years. To make matters worse the three professors I had in mind for LOR do not teach at my university any more. One of them has retired (or so I assume since I cannot find his information anywhere), and the other two have gone on to teach at other schools.

Is it a bad idea to email the two professors that teach in different states now and ask them for recommendations? I would prefer that I could talk to my recommenders in person, but that is not an option.

I also have considered asking one of my professors from this semester whose class is an upper level writing intensive class in my major, but I did not know what the protocol is for that since the semester is not over and I would like to ask before the end of the semester.


Essentially my options are:

-Ask 2 via email
-Ask professors from this semesters classes
-Ask former employer

Any advice on the best way to go about this dilemma would be appreciated.

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RCSOB657
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Re: LOR Advice

Postby RCSOB657 » Tue Dec 02, 2014 2:32 pm

I'd approach the instructor in your current class if he can speak on your writing ability. Hopefully you're getting an A or at least a B with improvement. Classes should almost be over for you. Just make sure to phrase it right, "do you think you could write me a strong letter of recommendation...?"

Chalupa Batman
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Joined: Tue Oct 21, 2014 2:48 pm

Re: LOR Advice

Postby Chalupa Batman » Tue Dec 02, 2014 2:37 pm

RCSOB657 wrote:I'd approach the instructor in your current class if he can speak on your writing ability. Hopefully you're getting an A or at least a B with improvement. Classes should almost be over for you. Just make sure to phrase it right, "do you think you could write me a strong letter of recommendation...?"



Classes are almost over. I have one final paper left in this particular professors class and have a strong A right now. The class is not actually over until the 17th or 18th, does that make any difference?

If I take this route I would still need one more recommendation. Would an email to an old professor or asking a former employer make more sense?

Thanks for your help.

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RCSOB657
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Re: LOR Advice

Postby RCSOB657 » Tue Dec 02, 2014 2:40 pm

Chalupa Batman wrote:
RCSOB657 wrote:I'd approach the instructor in your current class if he can speak on your writing ability. Hopefully you're getting an A or at least a B with improvement. Classes should almost be over for you. Just make sure to phrase it right, "do you think you could write me a strong letter of recommendation...?"



Classes are almost over. I have one final paper left in this particular professors class and have a strong A right now. The class is not actually over until the 17th or 18th, does that make any difference?

If I take this route I would still need one more recommendation. Would an email to an old professor or asking a former employer make more sense?

Thanks for your help.


YMMW, imo don't use the employer unless it's a long time job (over 2-3 years) and he/she has seen what you're capable of not just a supervisor that only sees you once a month. I say that especially since you're still in school.

You could just blanket everyone though, email and employer. No reason to not have more LORs than you need.

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hillz
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Re: LOR Advice

Postby hillz » Tue Dec 02, 2014 2:46 pm

Since you're still in school, it's best to have at least 2 academic LORs. I would first try emailing the professors who have moved on to different schools. If you have trouble getting in touch with them, you can always contact your dept. office and see if they have a different email address that might work. This type of situation happens all of the time and they won't think it's odd that you are reaching out to them. In the email, make sure to include the classes you took with them and your resume. You can also offer to talk on the phone if they would prefer since you can't meet in person.

I think it's fine to go ahead and ask your current professor(s) to write you a LOR. By the time that they write it, your classes will probably be finished and they will be able to comment on your abilities based on your overall performance in their class. Ask in person since you are still on campus and just be really respectful and nice about the whole thing. Most people are willing to be more helpful than you think they will be.

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KMart
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Re: LOR Advice

Postby KMart » Tue Dec 02, 2014 2:53 pm

I don't think there's any issue with trying to email your professors first. Maybe the school knows their new email address (if they don't automatically forward from the old school to the new email). I'd try who you are comfortable with first before asking a current professor.

Chalupa Batman
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Joined: Tue Oct 21, 2014 2:48 pm

Re: LOR Advice

Postby Chalupa Batman » Tue Dec 02, 2014 3:18 pm

Thanks for all the advice so far.

I have the new email address of one of my old professors but have not been able to find the other one.

I found her on linkedin but I feel like that may not be the best way to contact her? I am thinking I would be better off asking my university if they have her contact information. Thoughts?

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antiworldly
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Re: LOR Advice

Postby antiworldly » Tue Dec 02, 2014 3:35 pm

If you're looking to contact former faculty, the department secretary is your best friend. They will have access to records of everyone who has ever taught there, and they should be able to give you contact information.




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