Wednesday, September 13
A graduate student reported to me that her advisor showed her a draft of the letter of recommendation he has written for her for the job market. He asked her to look it over and make whatever corrections seemed appropriate. Overall, the letter was very nice and complementary. But the version also had some corrections of his own. Namely, at the very end of the letter, he wrote, "In my view, this is a 'can't miss' prospect." He had crossed this out.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ouch! Scarlet, I'm seeing a pattern among your graduate students, too. Do you see it?

thistle said...

When I was applying to grad programs a couple of years after getting my BA, I ended up seeing a copy of one of my rec letters from a professor. He had written very positive things about me and my prospects, but had also noted that I asked him to write the letter at the very last minute, which might be indicative of a lack of organization. Definitely a can-miss letter.

Orange Ina said...

AH, I hate it when profs do that! My understanding is that it's common practice in Europe. It's such BS. It takes the responsbility off the faculty member. And it's also inappropriate, and jeopordizes the value of the system. Of course, some of our fellow secret correspondants could probably save themselves some trouble if they did it this way.

Anonymous said...

Oh, sorry to be cryptic, thistle. There's nothing wrong with her graduate students except that they apparently see her as an oasis of sanity.

OI, I swear, I think they show the letters because they want credit for their work.