Best Letter of Recommendation for a Scholarship Example (+ Free Template) [2020]

Students often request a recommendation letter (or reference letter) for future scholarship opportunities. They request this letter of recommendation for a scholarship to the professor, teacher, guidance counselor, or faculty member they are closest to. The recommendation letter will support the student’s scholarship letter, accompanying school test scores, and other criteria the admissions officers are required to review for a scholarship application.

As a recommender, it’s important to consider writing about some of the following in the scholarship recommendation letter:

  • The student’s GPA and educational performance.
  • The student’s promising qualities and enthusiasm for their career.
  • Significant moments and experiences that show great character and traits.
  • Significant academic achievement and overall academic success.
  • A summary of the student’s potential.
  • A display of skills through experiences (IE: leadership skills).

The applicant should provide the letter writer with a few details to assist in the letter writing process:

  • A copy of the student’s scholarship letter or personal statement.
  • The application details.
  • The application deadline.
  • Information about the college.
  • Information about the specific scholarship or financial aid details.

A scholarship committee and scholarship provider is going to be looking for exceptional experiences from the recommendation writer that show excellence on behalf of the applicant. This should include specific examples where the student showed promise, selfless acts of kindness, and motivation to advance to be considered an effective letter. Whether seeking a graduate school scholarship or college scholarship, the details are similar.

Recommendation letter writers should spend time reviewing all the assets provided by the applicant before writing. Reading through the student’s personal statement can be a great way to capture how the student is positioning themselves for the scholarship program and selection committee. This can assist in recalling the student’s achievements and experiences that build a quality letter of recommendation.

Due to the number of scholarship applicants per year, it’s best to keep the letter short and impactful. Use experiences and achievements to display the student’s potential as a graduate student, college student, or high school student. Once the letter is completed, send the letter to the student as a PDF and Word document for their online application.

Sample Letter

Dr. Hank Drake
Faculty of Emerson College
[email protected]

May 1, 2020

Dear Selection Committee —

This letter is intended to recommend Jason Smith for your Scholarship Program. I’d like to cut directly to the point with Jason and speak about a few examples where he showed excellence and exceptional behavior unlike any student I have had in the past.

  • Jason led the creation of our Investment Club, bringing in more than 50 new members in his first year and advancing the finance department qualities and capabilities through these efforts.
  • Jason has been able to obtain a 3.8 GPA throughout the year while also working closely with our school newspaper, transitioning them into a digital magazine through his own computer science knowledge.
  • Jason is well known throughout the college as a student in the community who is helpful to anyone who desires to advance in the world of finance. Many faculty work closely with him to encourage other students.
Jason has become a staple to our institution and has shown leadership and motivation unlike any other. He is deserving of your scholarship opportunity to be able to represent your institution with world-class excellence.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at: 638-873-8476

Sincerely,
Dr. Hank Drake
Faculty of Emerson College

Scholarship Recommendation Template

Below is a recommendation letter template for a professor or faculty member writing for a student who is requesting a scholarship.

[Your Name]
[College Name]
[Your Email Address]

[Current Date]

Dear Selection Committee — This letter is intended to recommend [Student’s Name] for your Scholarship Program. I’d like to cut directly to the point with Jason and speak about a few examples where he showed excellence and exceptional behavior unlike any student I have had in the past.
  • [Student’s Achievement and Student Experience]
  • [Student’s Achievement and Student Experience]
  • [Student’s Achievement and Student Experience]
[Student’s Name] has become a staple to our institution and has shown leadership and motivation unlike any other. He is deserving of your scholarship opportunity to be able to represent your institution with world-class excellence.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at [Phone Number]

Sincerely,
[Your Name]
[Job Title/College]

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author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is an experienced executive who has spent a number of years in Silicon Valley hiring and coaching some of the world’s most valuable technology teams. Patrick has been a source for Human Resources and career related insights for Forbes, Glassdoor, Entrepreneur, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, and many more.

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