LOR situation

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
Ffthending
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:40 pm

LOR situation

Postby Ffthending » Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:54 pm

Back in October, I asked a prof that I thought knew me the most to write me a letter. She was enthusiastic about it and we agreed a deadline of "around thanksgiving" giving her about a month. So a week before thanksgiving, I sent her a polite email reminder and the lsac link. No response. Then thanksgiving came and went, and 1 more week went by before I sent her another email, thinking she may have not seen the first for whatever reason, and asking if she could please get it to me by this current week (because I guess "around thanksgiving" is vague so I wanted to give her a more concrete date). No response. At this point, I'm already 3 weeks behind when I planned to submit my apps and I'm just waiting on her letter. Last ditch attempt, I called her yesterday and left her a voicemail asking if there was something wrong and whether she was still willing to write me a LOR, and to please get back to me and just let me know if she isn't. Haven't heard anything yet.

I guess I'm just completely confused and wondering if there's something in this situation I'm not seeing? At this point, I get that it seems like she's just trying to get me to take a hint but I really don't understand why someone would enthusiastically agree to write a letter for you, get your resume, ps, and aspects you'd like her to focus on, and then just completely shun your emails and calls a month later? Commitments change and that's fine but isn't it common courtesy to at least let me know ahead of time so I can make other plans? Or even to just respond to me now and tell me now "hey I'm too busy sorry". It's so late in the game now to get a whole new letter and I only have one without hers. Ughhh

mcmand
Posts: 404
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2014 12:45 pm

Re: LOR situation

Postby mcmand » Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:26 pm

Are you able to see if she's even in the office? It's possible she went on leave or something, although the more probable explanation is she doesn't want to write it anymore.

You also should rule out whether your emails are going to anyone's spam. If you email any other profs regularly, ask in person if they are getting your emails.

Notwithstanding the above, it sounds like she doesn't want to write it and you should find a backup who would enthusiastically pump out an LOR in a few days.

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blerggggg
Posts: 33
Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2015 1:42 pm

Re: LOR situation

Postby blerggggg » Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:35 pm

This is a pretty shitty situation to be put in, so I'm sorry.

If I were you, I would keep hounding the professor until you hear a definitive answer from them. She may be trying to give you a hint, but you should not stop contacting her until she gives you a definitive answer. You and her had been in contact in the past and she had agreed to write you a letter. You were under the impression, given your history, she would have provided a letter and she hasn't yet. You shouldn't just slink away but keep contacting her until she gives you a firm answer. Frankly, you should have continued to follow up with her from the git-go, because now your apps went from being submitted early to kinda early (but hindsight is 20/20 so whatever).

I would also be sending out emails to other potential letter writers. In the event where she takes forever to say NO, you're really screwed. Find any professor where you might have built a rapport with and did well in the class. This time of the year however is pretty rough to ask professors for a LOR (midterms and holidays upon us), so pick wisely.

Again, really crappy situation to be put in. Keep hounding the professor (it might've slipped her mind, she may be trying to give you a hint, no matter what you need to find out). Contact other professors that may be willing to write any letter of rec (a mediocre LOR is better than no LOR).

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blackmamba8
Posts: 297
Joined: Thu Sep 08, 2016 2:53 pm

Re: LOR situation

Postby blackmamba8 » Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:41 pm

I would look for other professors to write one for you. I got two of my three from professors I didn't even know very well but had gotten A's in their classes. If there are classes you have taken and done well in that had smaller class sizes I would ask one of those professors.

mcmand
Posts: 404
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2014 12:45 pm

Re: LOR situation

Postby mcmand » Mon Dec 04, 2017 2:38 pm

blackmamba8 wrote:I would look for other professors to write one for you. I got two of my three from professors I didn't even know very well but had gotten A's in their classes. If there are classes you have taken and done well in that had smaller class sizes I would ask one of those professors.


I suppose this is an option if you're desperate, OP, but these are not very good letters in my experience. I reviewed some applications while on the admissions committee of my law school, and these kinds of letters are either bland and say the same cliches about you as a student as anyone else would, or they actually turn out badly and the professor writes something like "I don't remember them well, but they did well in my class," which is not a ringing endorsement.

If your stats put you on the cusp of some of your schools and you're hoping your PS and LORs put you over the edge, be wary of this approach.




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