Career Services offers a credential file service so that students and alumni may provide graduate schools and/or employers information about their background and qualifications. Most credential files contain written recommendations from professors, former employers, or supervisors who have been able to observe them closely in an educational or work setting. The file may not include:
- Transcripts - For these please contact the Office of the Registrar.
- Graduate school examination scores
Between three and five letters are appropriate for most credential files. Graduate schools and employers are generally satisfied with three or four well-written letters.
Important Information About Confidentiality
If a letter is designated confidential, you will never be able to view its contents. You may find out if the letter has been placed in your file and whether or not it is directed toward graduate school or employment. All non-confidential letters may be viewed in our office during regular hours. No recommendations will be read over the phone, either to you or to a prospective employer or graduate school.
Although most employers will accept both confidential and non-confidential recommendations, some place a higher value on confidential recommendations. Graduate schools often prefer a confidential format, and some letter writers feel more comfortable with the confidential format.
Obtaining Personal Copies
Upon your written request, a copy of non-confidential material contained in your file can be forwarded to you.
Updating and Deleting Information
If you no longer wish to use a specific recommendation, you may inform us, in writing, to place it in an inactive status. As you grow professionally, you should update your file to reflect your professional development. Letters from four or five years ago will probably not represent current levels of responsibility and achievement. You may want to add new letters of recommendation to replace old ones.
Each credential file will be maintained for 10 years from the date in which it is opened. At the end of this 10-year period, all files will be destroyed unless you notify this office, in writing, that you wish to keep your file active. If your file is destroyed at the end of the 10-year active period, you may establish a new file at any time.