Obtain Three Strong Letters of Recommendation
You are asked to submit three academic letters of reference for the Fulbright Scholarship. The Fulbright is primarily an academic scholarship, so the selection committee is looking for honest appraisals of your academic abilities. You should keep the following points in mind when selecting recommenders.
- References should be from faculty members with whom you have worked, had a class, or conducted a research project. At least two of the letters should be from professors in your major or field who are familiar with your abilities and proposed project.
- Choose people who know you well academically, who can comment on your proposal, and who can comment on your ability to live overseas for an extended period of time. A letter of recommendation is most useful when it includes specific comments on the strength of your Fulbright application. Recommenders should be able to comment on your ability to carry out your proposed project and the suitability of the country or institution chosen.
- For the English Teaching Assistantship, make sure your recommenders can address your abilities or potential abilities as a teacher. There is a specific recommendation form for the English Teaching Assistantship awards that asks references to comment on the applicant’s teaching ability and potential.
- Identify your recommenders and contact them as early in the process as possible. Brief them on the overall timeline, expectations, and opportunities with regard to the Fulbright Grant. If your recommenders are familiar with your plans and the application process, they will be more helpful to you when providing feedback and constructive criticism.
- Give your recommenders as much information about yourself as possible. The following is a list of helpful items to give to your selected recommenders: Draft essay(s) and application, Copy of transcript, and Background information on the U.S. Student Fulbright Program.