Need help from a conservator? Call 202-452-9545 or use our Find a Conservator tool.

National Heritage Responders

Is an Emergency Affecting your Collection? 

Is an emergency (such as a natural or manmade disaster) affecting your institution? Call our response team 24/7 at 202-661-8068.  
Learn more here.

Writing Letters of Support

How to submit a letter

Letters of support must be submitted by the application deadline. Please be sure that the authors of your letters have seen these guidelines and are aware of the deadline.

References can use FAIC’s Letter of Support Form or submit letters of support in other formats if the author’s signature is included.

Applications that are administered through FAIC's online portal require that references use the portal to submit letters of support. Once applicants submit their reference information, an automated email will be sent to the references with submission instructions. Letters uploaded to the system will not be accessible to the applicant.

Applications that are submitted via email require that references email their letters of support directly to

Please submit any supporting materials as a PDF (portable document format) if possible.

What makes a good letter?

  • The author should show knowledge of the candidate and the project.
  • The author should indicate how well he or she knows the candidate, and in what context (as a colleague, supervisor, etc.).
  • If appropriate, the author should explain why the candidate is ready to undertake this project and what skills, knowledge, and abilities the candidate already possesses that will prepare him or her for the project.
  • The author should specifically address how this project will be of benefit. For most professional development scholarships, the focus should be on how the project will benefit the candidate and his or her professional development, rather than how it might benefit an employer.
  • Evaluative statements should be accompanied with specific examples wherever possible.
  • Honesty is always appreciated rather than hyperbole!
  • Remember that letters must be received by FAIC staff by the scholarship deadline.

Additional Resources

The AIC Education and Training Committee has created one-page guides to requesting and writing letters of reference, whether for grants and scholarships or job recommendations.