Skip to content Skip to navigation
Skip to global navigation Menu

Career Education

Vassar College

The Center for Career Education (CCE) will store and send letters of recommendation on behalf of students and alums. Letters of recommendation are also referred to as reference files, credentials, or a dossier. The CCE will maintain paper records for students and alums for the past 10 class years, and will keep electronic (scanned) copies of letters indefinitely. 

Information for students and alums

To get started, fill out a Reference File Registration (78K) Form. This form can be mailed to Box 7, scanned, and emailed to, or faxed to (845) 437-7257.

Next, ask your faculty, supervisors, and other references to submit a letter on your behalf. These letters can be mailed to Box 7, scanned, and emailed to or faxed to (845) 437-7257. Note that some applications will require the signature of your letter writer, and others may recommend that you have waived your right to request a copy of the letter. If you are planning to use the letter(s) for applications to law or other graduate programs, we recommend completing a waiver form (11K) for each letter.

To check the status of your file at anytime, simply email or call (845) 437-5285.

Important notes:

  • Letters of recommendation will only be released with your consent. 
  • It is your responsibility to ensure that all materials in the file are accurate, complete, and up-to-date. 
  • In our experience, letters of recommendation that are older than five (5) years are perceived by graduate schools or organizations as less relevant than more recent letters.
  • Transcripts can be requested from the Registrar’s Office.

Tips for requesting letters of recommendation:

Request letters of recommendation only from people you feel confident can report honestly on your best personal and academic qualities. If you are unsure, ask simply and directly: “I need a letter of recommendation for ________, and I wondered if you felt that you knew me and my work well enough to write a strong letter of recommendation.” The aim is to have your recommender present you in a clear, positive, professional light. 

Recognize that recommenders are busy people and that it will be to your advantage to make their job as easy as possible:

  • Gather your recommendations systematically on a semester, yearly, or summer basis: as soon as possible after the experience itself
  • Give a copy of your resume (and, possibly, personal statement) to your recommender
  • Tell your recommender how and why you plan to use the recommendation
  • Give your recommender plenty of advance notice; do not wait until the last minute to ask for a letter
  • Be sure to thank your recommenders, and to let them know the outcome of your applications

Information for letter writers

Letters can be mailed to Box 7, emailed to, or faxed to (845) 437-7257. Note that some applications will require your signature on the letter and/or request that it be printed on department letterhead. In general, we recommended that students and alums waive their right to request the letter directly when they plan to use it for applications to graduate or professional school by completing the waiver form for reference letters (11K).