Friday, 2 September 2016
Getting Recommended by your past Professors
It was so bad that I applied to schools, forgot about them till the admission letter came in.
Whilst some schools do not require it, a lot more schools ask for recommendation letters from your past lecturers.
I graduated from my first degree in 2011. That was 4 years ago. My Econs class had a population of close to 150 students. Usually I would just go to class, listen, write my assignments and that was it.
There were some students who were particularly close to lecturers but I surely wasnt one of them.
So Imagine going back to these lecturers who may probably not remember, and asking them to recommend you for a Masters program. Tough.
But I had to submit that, so I made the journey back to my school.
I decided to only go to Lecturers whose courses I aced.
I went to Lecturer one and he said : 'I am currently enrolled in a PhD program so I am not entitled to write recommendation letters'
Lecture 2:' I need 3 months to write the letter'. The application was due to be submitted in the next month.
Then I remembered how in L200 I was shortlisted as part of the top 20 Econs students. We were to apply for a $500 scholarship instituted by an alumni. Though I didnt apply for this scholarship, I clearly remembered the Lecturer who was in charge of that particular process.
So I went to his office
Come in. Yes what do you want?
Sir I applied to a school for my Masters degree. As part of the application I need to submit a recommendation letter and I will be grateful if you can write one for me.
What class did you graduate with?
Second Class Lower
I am sorry I only write for First C;lass. I cant help you.
But Sir, I was part of the best 20 students in L200.
I don't remember. And as I said earlier, I cant recommend people who graduated with a Second Lower.
I didnt know what to say again. I was so sure he was going to write one for me. I just stood at his office, my eyes gradually swelling up with tears. He was my last hope and he didn't even give me a chance!
I slwoly walked out of his office. I felt ashamed and labelled. He called me 'people with Second class lower', making it seem like it was a disease.
There was nothing else to do but hope my school would consider my application without the recommendation letter. But they didn't. It was a top program in a top school. Very competitive so they just disqualified me based on that.
So is it the Lecturers duty to write a recommendation letter or it is a thing of priviledge.