An admissions officer at a conference last week shared a great phrase in a session about letters of recommendation–“Land the plane.”
“Land the plane” is what he thinks to himself when a letter of rec drones on, adding far more words than real information. “Land the plane” is like “Wrap it up.”
It’s important for teachers, counselors and most of all, applicants, to remember that admissions officers have to read hundreds, even thousands of files, every season. They’re only human. They get tired and bored just like the rest of us. So make your letters of rec, applications and essays clear and forceful. Say what you want to say, but don’t say more just for the sake of filling up all the available space. Remember that brevity is a mark of well-edited writing.
And when in doubt, land the plane.