Information for Faculty

Role of Faculty

Baruch’s Faculty plays a critical role in helping students apply for scholarships and awards. There are many ways that faculty members can become involved in helping students realize their ambitions.


Identify promising students

As faculty you have direct access to Baruch’s students you see the most promising and inspirational among them and we encourage you to help in our endeavors by referring those students to Baruch’s Fellowships Advisor. They deserve the chance to compete for prestigious scholarships, and our services exist to help them prepare to do just that.

Promising students tend to stand out either through their academic accomplishments or their strong motivation and intellectual curiosity.  When you encounter a student with great potential please talk to them to find out a bit about their future goals and, if relevant, let them know that opportunities exist through fellowships and scholarships to achieve these goals.


Refer students

You can refer a student to Baruch’s Fellowships Advisor, for a specific award or for general scholarship advising, simply contact the Fellowships Advisor, Valeria Hymas at

If you would like to learn more about individual programs for which we advise students, please see the lists of scholarships and fellowships available on this website.  You can also request a classroom visit from the Fellowship Advisor to discuss a specific or general opportunities by emailing the Fellowships Advisor at


Mentor fellowship candidates

There are many ways to mentor fellowship candidates:

  • Provide critical feedback on their project ideas and fellowship applications. This will give students an advantage others won’t have.
  • Encourage students to become involved in any research endeavors that you or your colleagues are doing.
  • Recommend that they take challenging classes from your colleagues who you think will be able to inspire their best work.
  • Invite and encourage top students to attend lectures and other events that will broaden and deepen their education.
  • Be frank and honest in your feedback


Serve on the campus screening committee

Several fellowships require candidates to go through a campus screening or endorsement process in order to apply for the program.  These include: Fulbright Awards, Truman Scholarships, Jeannette K. Watson Fellowships, Rhodes Scholarships and Marshall Scholarships.  In these cases a committee of faculty and advising staff will be convened to read applications, interview candidates and provide feedback to both the candidates and to the fellowship’s sponsoring organization.  If you are interested in serving on one of these committees, or would like to recommend a colleague, please contact Baruch’s Fellowships Advisor at


Serving on mock interview panels

Mock interviews will be offered to fellowship candidates who are successful in being invited to interview with a fellowship’s selection officials.  Baruch’s Fellowship Advisor will convene mock interview panels to as closely mirror the actual interview experience as possible to help prepare the candidate.  Some mock interviews are designed to expose the applicant to as many questions as possible that they might expect to get in a national interview; others are designed to poke holes in the candidate’s application that can be fixed before it is submitted to the national competition.  If you are interested in serving on a mock interview panel, or would like to recommend a colleague, please contact Baruch’s Fellowships Advisor at


Write letters of recommendation

Letters of recommendation are a crucial component of any fellowship application. The comments made in the letter should put the candidate’s accomplishments into perspective as well as offer important information on any special circumstances that can set them apart from other candidates.

If a student reaches out to you to ask for a letter of recommendation you should carefully consider whether or not you know the student well enough to specifically and accurately comment on their qualifications, strengths, academic preparedness and appropriateness for the program to which they are applying.


Online Reference Information

Writing Recommendation Letters: A Faculty Handbook
Joe Schall, Penn State’s e-Education Institute’s Open Educational Resources


Tips for writing a strong letter of recommendation

An effective letter of recommendation will:

  • Provide anecdotes of a student’s achievements in order to add context that fully conveys the scope of their accomplishments.
  • Detail how well and how long you have known the student, and in what capacity.
  • Discuss and evaluate the student’s scholarly potential and academic record.
  • Describe any research activities the student was involved in and provide details of their role and the significance of the impact that they made.
  • Describe the candidate’s personality and work ethic, using concrete examples that demonstrate a strong relationship.
  • Give informed comment on the candidate’s application essay discussing their ability to complete it successfully, and elaborating on any themes contained within.
  • Provide evidence of the candidate’s leadership and service noting specific examples.
  • Use narrative technique to highlight the student in action, as a tutor, researcher, peer mentor, volunteer, innovator, and activist.
  • Rank the candidate in relation to other students you have taught.
  • Be complete and submitted on time and preferably a few days before the deadline


Unhelpful letters will:

  • Be too generic and/or too short.
  • Provide no insight into their potential and qualifications for the fellowship.
  • Be written with faint praise.
  • Not relate to the fellowship’s purpose, or not adhere to the instructions provided by the fellowship organization.
  • Be addressed to the wrong fellowship organization.

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