Friday, 2 September 2016

Getting Recommended by your past Professors

When I was applying for admission into schools, I considered a whole lot of countries and a whole lot schools. I must have applied to about 10 schools. Or more.

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

Knock. Knock.

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.


  1. Hmmm...lecturers including non academic staffs in Senate building always assume lordship when you need them to assist you. they are not cultured and lack both discretion and initiative.

  2. I find it difficult to post a comment on your blog

    1. What happens when you try to? It seems it worked this time

    2. I tried at other times and it didn't work,just decided to try this one and it went. I have tried to comment on other post but the publish button just wouldn't respond

  3. Disqualified? Didn't I just read you've gotten admission and Visa? ?

    1. I had applied to different schools. I didn't get into all of them.

    2. I applied to different schools. I didn't get into all of them. But yes I have my Visa now