For Letters of Recommendation for Applicants to the RESESS Internship Program

Thank you for writing a letter of recommendation for your student for their application to the RESESS Internship Program!

PLEASE NOTE: We will not accept letters of recommendation until students are notified that they are finalists.


RESESS is an undergraduate summer research internship program that supports students from underrepresented groups and from disadvantaged economic circumstances on their path to graduate school, with a goal of increasing diversity in the geoscience workforce.

RESESS also seeks students who are passionate about raising awareness about the importance of the geosciences among broad and diverse segments of the population. RESESS is an excellent internship program that provides interns with compensation, travel, housing, a research experience, and multi-faceted mentoring and professional development. Students develop a strong sense of cohort and bonds with other interns, and these relationships support them through their careers.

How competitive is the RESESS Internship Program?

Each year we accept about 8-15 new interns, and we receive more than one hundred applications to the program.


  • Please write your letter on official letterhead.
  • Save the document as a PDF file.

In your letter, please address the following points, using examples where possible:

  • Relationship to applicant: How do you know this student (in what capacity, and how long have you known them?
  • Intellectual characteristics: Please comment on the applicant’s ability to learn and retain information, to reason through and analyze a problem, and ability to deal with abstract or complex concepts.
  • Knowledge of and passion for field of study: Please comment on the applicant’s depth and breadth of knowledge in their field of study separately from their enthusiasm for it.
  • Ability to communicate articulately: Please comment on the applicant’s ability to write and to present information orally.
  • Industry and self-discipline: Address the applicant’s persistence, efficiency, motivation, and diligence.
  • Qualities of maturity and personal adjustment: Is the applicant ready to undertake research? Why or why not? Does the applicant have the trust and respect of fellow students and peers? Why or why not?
  • Fit for the RESESS Program: Please comment on why you believe that the applicant is (or is not) a good match for the RESESS internship.Thank you again for the time you are taking in writing your letter of recommendation. We take these letters seriously. If you are writing several letters for students from your institution, help us by providing some guidance on which students are a better fit for our program.If you have questions about the program, please email or call (303) 381-7500.