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October Greetings from Alumni Career Services

This month we'll give you best practices for references & recommendation letters, as well as a look at destination outcomes, a.k.a where Tufts grads go for employment and grad school. 

Featured Opportunity: The Alumni Professional Development Fund is now accepting applications!

Do you need financial support for a professional development opportunity? Is there a conference or training that's just out of reach? Apply for the TUAA sponsored Professional Development Fund, and get support for your career and professional growth. Applications for 2020 close on November 1.

Explore the Professional Development Fund

FAQ of the Month

I want to ask someone for a reference/recommendation, but I haven’t done a great job of keeping in touch with the person. What should I do?

It happens -- you intend to stay in contact with that former colleague or supervisor and life gets in the way. But now you need an employment or grad school reference and you think this person will be a strong one. Consider the following in your outreach:

Be honest about your reasons for getting back in touch. If writing an email, you might say, "Dear Jane, I hope you’re doing well. I'd really like to hear what you've been up to since we last spoke. I'm also writing because I'm applying for [name of program or position/employer], and even though it’s been a while, I think you're still the best person to speak to my [specific experience, abilities]. Do you mind if I give you a quick call sometime to discuss this?"

Be as helpful as possible. In a phone call or in-person meeting, share your reasons for applying and explain why this reference will help you. Provide your resume and a copy of the job description. If applying to a graduate program, give an overview of the program and all the necessary info (e.g., a copy of your personal statement, an envelope with stamp to return any forms).

Be prepared to hear 'no.' If the person doesn't feel comfortable writing a recommendation or giving a reference, don't force it. A lukewarm endorsement isn't in your best interest anyway. Explore your backup options, review more tips on our website, and talk to an Alumni Career Services Advisor to strategize.

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