Sample Reference Letter For A High School Student

Are you a high school student who has been asked to submit a reference letter for the application for a job or a volunteering position or college application? 

Or are you a teacher who has been asked by a high school student to write a reference letter? 

This article provides information that is needed to write an effective reference letter for a high school student and other related information.

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Reference Letter For A High School Student

A reference letter is a document that positively endorses positive a student’s skills and attributes, written by someone familiar with their work, character, and accomplishments in academic or professional background.

As a high school student, a reference letter is needed to apply for jobs, internships, volunteer positions, colleges, and graduate school programs.

The reference letter explains why the organization should select the student, and what qualifies them to be a good candidate for what they’re applying.

Types Of Reference Letters For A High School Student

  • Academic Reference Letter

An academic letter is written by a teacher, counselor, school administrator, coach, or advisor. 

Academic letters of recommendation are written to help students get into college or get summer internships or jobs.

This letter comprises a student’s academic achievement, educational background, character, and academic or career goals in one or two pages. 

It focuses on the skills, qualities, and experiences that the student has that make them a good candidate for a specific organization or college.

An academic reference letter is submitted in sealed envelopes with the author’s signature on the seal.

  • Character Reference Letter

A character or personal reference letter can be written by a family friend, teacher, mentor, or coach who can attest to the characters that make the student a good candidate for the organization or college.

This type of letter can be used as a reference letter for students with no work experience.

This letter focuses on the student’s character, personality, traits, and abilities. It also provides instances of personal interactions with the student.

Requesting For Reference Letter

Most teachers are willing to write a reference letter for students who performed well in their classes.

Still, be aware that writing out a good reference letter is a time-consuming task and you should try to make this as easy as possible for your teacher.

Tips to make this task and information to provide your teacher with are:

  • Give your teacher sufficient time to write a good reference letter.
  • The deadline by which the letter must be submitted
  • The address of the organization or college
  • The name of the organization or college you’re applying to
  • The title and description of the position you’re applying for
  • A list of the qualifications or skills that you have that will be required for the position
  • Your resume or CV
  • A list of extracurricular activities and awards you participated in

As a high school student, you may not have a resume but you don’t need to have actual work experience to write your first resume.

In your resume, you can describe your schoolwork, personal academic accomplishments, volunteering work, and participation in extracurricular clubs.

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What Should Be In A Reference Letter For A High School Student

When writing a reference letter for a high school student, make sure to include:

  • The organization or college

The reference letter should start by mentioning the organization or college the student is applying to. With that, the reader can know what the recommendation is for.

  • Your relationship with the student

 A recommendation letter should include information on who you are, your qualifications, your connection with the student you are recommending, and you are endorsing the student.

  • Match the organization or college requirement and the student’s qualification

 The objective of the reference letter is to help the student get hired or accepted into an organization or college.

Showing how the student is a good candidate will help make a case for hiring or accepting the student into an academic or volunteer program or an organization.

  • Give examples 

When writing the reference letter, provide examples of situations where the student has impressed you and how that makes the student a good candidate

  • Your contact information

The reference letter should include your contact information for more information about the student.

Reference Letter Style For A High School Student

It’s important to know the style to be used for a reference letter because it’s as important as the content of the letter. Some tips on the length, font, and format when writing a reference letter for a high school student are:

  • Length: A reference letter should be more than one or two paragraphs. It can be one or at most two pages to show you know the student well enough to be endorsed. 

The reference letter should be concise and focus on key points. Four paragraphs that explain how you know the student and why you are recommending them for a position is an appropriate length.

  • Format: The reference letter should be single-spaced with a space between each paragraph.

Its recommended to use 1″ margins for the top, bottom, left, and right of the page, and align your reference letter to the left.

  • Font: It’s best to use a traditional font like Times New Roman or Arial. The font size should be between 11 and 12 points, so it’s easier to read. 

How To Write A Reference Letter For A High School Student

These are steps to help you write a reference letter:

  1. Address the letter.

You should know who will be reading the letter so you can salute and provide information relating to the program or organization. 

Know from the student to whom you are addressing the letter. If the student is applying for a specific position or school, then the address can be to the HR manager or admission officer. 

  1.  Introduction.

Write a paragraph of a brief introduction of yourself in the reference letter.

The introduction should include who you are, your relationship with the student, your profession, and your expertise. Also, you should include how long you’ve known the student, your first impression of the student, and your general impression.

Be detailed in your qualifications and intention of writing the letter addressing the program or position you are recommending the student for.

  1. List out the student’s qualifications.

The reference letter can include details of your student’s time in school, achievements, activities, transcript, and CGPA to prove their academic abilities.

You can include more than one paragraph to provide details of the student’s academic performance and qualifications.

 You can discuss the following areas in your letter of recommendation:

  • Extracurricular activities

The student may have been involved in clubs, sports, and other activities that make them good candidates. You can make a list of the extracurricular activities the student participated in.

You can select from these activities to express the skills and character traits the student developed. 

  • Awards or recognitions

The student may have participated in academic or creative competitions or they may have shown consistent academic excellence. 

You can discuss the awards they’ve won from the competitions or their consistent academic excellence to show the student’s abilities.

If the student participated in broadcasted competitions, name them accordingly.

  • Academic specialties

You should discuss the student’s area of expertise or subjects they’re passionate about.

You should be able to persuade the reader that the student is genuinely interested in the organization or college they’re applying for.

  • Attitude and perspective

You should include details about the student’s positive character traits.

 Workplaces and universities value people with a positive attitude because it boosts morale and improves working environments or academic relationships. 

  • Demonstration of improvement

Remember to describe the student’s ambitions, and discuss how they improved in the classroom or completed a named project successfully. 

These qualifications can be an added advantage to the student and demonstrate that the student works toward goals that will help the organizations grow.

  1. Describe a situation where the student impressed you.

While discussing the student’s character and skills, use specific examples that will help the organization understand the student’s personality, drive, and abilities. 

Describe a peculiar situation of the student that impressed you, the actions they took to solve the situation and the results of the student’s actions. 

By doing this, you are demonstrating the student’s ability to solve issues, identify opportunities,  and take steps to complete the task or improve the situation. 

  1. End the letter with a particular recommendation.

You can make the reference letter more effective by relating the student’s qualifications to the organization to which they’re applying. 

In the final section of the reference letter, state specifically that you recommend the student, and highlight contributions that they will add to the organization.

  1. Provide your contact information.

At the end of the reference letter, make sure to include your contact information and offer to provide additional information that may be required or needed. 

This allows the reader to get a better understanding of the student, and it gives you an opportunity to be an even better advocate for the student.

  1. Letter Closing

End the letter with a formal letter closing, add your name and title. If you are sending a hard copy printed letter, include your name and signature.

If you’re sending the reference letter through the mail, remember to include your contact information in your signature

Samples of Reference Letter For A High School Student

This is an example of a reference letter for a high school student applying for a volunteer:

Basil Samuel

23 Bayelsa Street

Bloombreed, PH 55401

[email protected]


October 21, 2022

Jackson Brown


Fidelia Hospital

1 Hospital Rd.

Kubwa, PH 55401

Dear Mr. Brown:

I am writing this reference at the request of Charlene Wellington, who is applying for the Student Volunteer Program at Fidelia Hospital this summer.

I have known Charlene for two years in my capacity as a teacher at Bloombreed High School. Charlene attended my English and French classes, earning superior grades. Based on Charlene’s grades, attendance, and class participation, I’d recommend her for the position at the Student Volunteer Program.

Charlene has a lot of skills to offer an employer, and she is always interested in supporting others. For example, when we worked on our class community service project this year, Charlene was helpful in collecting and organizing the food for the pantry here in Bloombreed.

In conclusion, I would highly recommend Charlene Wellington. If her performance in my class is any indication of how she’d perform in the program, Charlene will be a positive addition to your organization. Should you need any additional information, please feel free to contact me at 545-075-5217 or by mail at [email protected] anytime.



Basil Samuel

 This is an example of a reference letter for a high school student applying for a job

Victoria Smith

23 Ozouba

Choba, PH 55405


[email protected]

March 23, 2022

Jesse Baker


Baker’s Breakfast

27 Igbogo Street

Wuse, Abuja 55233

Dear Mr. Baker,

I understand that Clifford Quincy has applied for a job as a receptionist at your Baker’s Breakfast for the upcoming summer season. Clifford has worked as a waitress in my restaurant for the past two summers. She is a hard worker, always on time, and cheerful. I have been impressed with her ability to manage during hectic times, always remaining in control and keeping the customers happy. She gets along well with her co-workers as well as with the management team.

Clifford is a bright young woman, and I am sure that she will excel at your organization. I enthusiastically recommend her for the position of receptionist. If you have any specific questions about Clifford’s experience and skills, I’m happy to help. Please call me at 562-345-9945.


Victoria Smith


Come Chop Restaurant

[email protected]

Have a great day.

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