Formal Reference Letter Sample

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How do you write a formal reference letter? What is an example of a professional reference? We provide a perfectly written Formal Reference Letter Sample that fits your needs!

We provide a letter that will professionalize your way of communication. Here’s a basic template that you can use to create the perfect recommendation letter for your former employee or colleague. Such a letter is also known as a letter of reference or recommendation letter. A reference letter is a recommendation from a previous or current manager, boss, supervisor, professor, coworker, peer, or personal relation of the requester of the letter, and it gives insights regarding the persons’ knowledge, skills, experience, awards, or aptitudes that he or she possess.

It’s common to use a reference letter during the search for a new job, project, or when you are applying for a program at a graduate school. Especially for students, reference letters may be required when applying for awards, funds, or grants such as a scholarship or fellowship. When presented selectively in a portfolio, reference letters provide compelling evidence to an employer or committee about your abilities. This blank reference letter is intuitive, ready-to-use when you want to recommend a person for a job position in another company or organization. Try it now and let this sample letter inspire you. We certainly encourage you to use this for your own benefit.

Recommendation of the work of Student sample content:

  • Dear Admissions Team, / To Whom It May Concern,
  • Dear Selection Committee:
  • Dear {{Name of Employer or Graduate School Committee}},

  • I am pleased to write a letter of recommendation for {{name of student}}. I highly recommend {{name of student}} to your organization for the position of {{job title}}.
  • It is my great pleasure to recommend {{student first and last name}} for the {{scholarship name}}. I am {{his/her}} Guidance Counsellor at {{name of high school}} and have had the pleasure of working with {{student first name}} on several committees and programs.
  • I can't stress enough my support for {{student first and last name}}, who has applied for the {{name of scholarship}}. 
  • I hold {{student first and last name}} in the highest esteem, and recommend {{him/her}} for the {{scholarship name}} without reservation.
  • I have known {{name of student}} for the past {{number of months, semesters, years}}as {{he/she}} has taken the following courses that I teach: {{list courses, give a brief description of the content of course}}. As {{his/her}} professor, I have had an opportunity to observe {{his/her}} participation and interaction in class and to evaluate {{name of student}}’s knowledge of the subject matter. 
  • {{He/she}} is an outstanding student in all respects. {{Name of student}} has proven that through hard work, follow through, and teamwork, {{he/she}} can accomplish tasks in a courteous and timely manner. 
  • {{Give one or two specific examples of the student's performance. Also, list other activities that the student is involved with at the university and outside of the university. Point out the areas in which this individual has learned and had the chance to grow with these opportunities.}}
  •  {{Name of student}} is well equipped to grow from challenges that {{he/she}} is presented with. {{His/her}} {{list three key traits (examples: patience, teaching ability, strong computer programming stills…)}}, prepare {{him/her}} beautifully for your{{company/organization/school/program}}. I strongly endorse making {{name of student}} a member of your team at {{list company name/school/program}}.
  • I wholeheartedly endorse {{student first and last name}} as recipient of the {{scholarship name}}. I am the Principal of {{name of high school}}, where {{student first name}} has studied for the past {{two}} years.
  • I see that the scholarship is intended to go to someone who demonstrates strong leadership skills. 
  • {{Student first name}} fits these guidelines perfectly. This past year {{he/she}} took on the primary responsibility for our school's role in the Enterprising Young People program. 
  • {{He/she}} collaborated with business students at Concordia University in tailoring the program to our student population.
  • {{He/she}} is also gifted in recognizing and drawing out the talents of others, and was able to put together and supervise a student committee to review the business plans created by the entrepreneurial students in the Enterprising Young People program. 
  • It is rare to meet a high school student who is so mature, organized and results-oriented.
  • I can whole-heartedly support {{student first name}} for this award.
  • {{His/her}} demonstrated leadership and vision have made a positive impact on our school community and I have no doubt that this will continue at the university {{he/she}} will be attending.
  • As {{his/her}} Math teacher, I can attest that {{student first name}} is not one to back down from a challenge, either academic or personal.
  • {{He/she}} finishes what {{he/she}} starts and never lets adversity get {{him/her}} down. Because of {{his/her}} bold vision and perseverance, our school now has a community-funded computer lab. 
  • {{Student first name}}’s dedication to that project continues as {{he/she}} supervises computer training in our community.
  • {{Student first name}}’s combination of academic achievement, leadership and personal character make {{him/her}} an ideal candidate. 
  • Once you meet {{student first name}} you will see why I am so enthusiastic about {{him/her}}, both as a student and a young citizen.
  • Having {{student first name}} in my classes this past year has been a real pleasure. We have bonded over our common interest in golf.
  • {{Student first name}} is involved in a wide range of extracurricular activities, from volunteering at a homeless shelter to chairing our school’s environment task force and, of course, participating in the golf club (for which I am the faculty sponsor).
  • {{He/she}} tells me that {{he/she}} aspires to be either a journalist or an editor. Whatever path {{he/she}} chooses, I know {{student first name}} will excel and prove our respective schools proud.
  • This scholarship would go a long way toward helping {{student first name}} achieve {{his/her}} goals, and I strongly urge you to award it to {{him/her}}. You will not find a more worthy recipient.
  • {{Student first name}} is a true leader. {{His/her}} teachers tell me {{he/she}} often takes on leadership roles and guides {{his/her}} classmates in reaching collective goals. 
  • I have seen this firsthand in my dealings with {{him/her}} as co-chair of our school’s environment task force. 
  • {{His/her}} leadership has resulted in measurable improvements in our school’s environmental footprint. Specifically, {{his/her}} school-wide push to separate organic waste has diverted 28% of our garbage to compost, significant savings to our school district, and a model for the community.
  • I am impressed by {{student first name}}’s diligence and character.

  • It has been a pleasure to have {{him/her}} at our school. {{He/she}} is most deserving of this award.
  • Thanking you. 
  • Yours sincerely,

What makes a good recommendation letter?

  • Enthusiastic! Show off the character and personality of the person;
  • Provide descriptions of your contributions to the work/academic environment related to completed tasks on time or your strengths;
  • Always use action verbs to describe your accomplishments, skills, and strengths;
  • Make sure to use the active voice which indicates that you completed tasks and demonstrated desirable behaviors. Since the passive voice can indicate that events happened with or without your active involvement;
  • Explain how you performed the responsibilities required, and therefore it’s good to study some appealing  anecdotes;
  • If possible, a statement indicating people would re-hire you or collaborate with you on another project;
  • Structured and written to highlight the person's strengths;
  • Immediately clear about the purpose and position the person is seeking;
  • Brief, preferably one or pages in length;
  • Clean, error-free, and easy to read;
  • Using common business letter format;
  • No copying of exact words/phrases from sample letters without checking the context;
  • Uses the correct name of the University or organization;
  • Contact information including his or her full name, appropriate title, address, phone number, and/or e-mail address;
  • Expands upon their resume; do not repeat it verbatim in your reference letter as well.

Using our Letter of recommendation template guarantees you will save time, cost, and effort!

Keep in mind that this example recommendation letter is only a basic and simple letter template. You should spend some effort in tweaking the letter and add some of your own creativity and personality to it. In fact, we encourage you to do so!

Download this formal Reference Letter template now, good luck!

Nothing on this site shall be considered legal advice and no attorney-client relationship is established.

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