Sample Letter(s) of Solicitation

Exhibits A, B, C, and D contain examples of typical letters soliciting outside evaluations. Exhibit A concerns the appointment of an Assistant Professor. Exhibit B was written for the recruitment of an Associate Professor, so it mentions tenure. Exhibit C and Exhibit D are for high-level professors, and as such mention UC criteria for appointment to those levels.

Exhibit A — Sample Appointment Letter: Assistant Professor

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Dear Dr.___________:

Dr. ______ is being considered for a faculty position as an Assistant Professor in the Department of __________ at the University of California, Irvine. We would appreciate obtaining your evaluation of Dr. _________’s potential as an independent research scientist and teacher. I am enclosing Dr._____________’s curriculum vitae and recent reprints for your convenience.

Although the contents of your letter may be passed on to the candidate at prescribed stages of the review process, your identity will be held in confidence. The material made available will lack the letterhead, the signature block, and material below the latter. Therefore, material that would identify you, particularly your relationship to the candidate, should be placed below the signature block. In any legal proceeding or other situation in which the source of the confidential information is sought, the University does its utmost to protect the identity of such sources.

I am very much obliged for any assistance you can give us in this matter. Because of our schedule in this action, I would appreciate having your comments within the next month to six weeks, if at all possible.

Sincerely,

Dean/Chair/Executive Committee Chair

Enclosures

Exhibit B — Sample Appointment Letter: Associate Professor

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Dear Professor ____________:

The Department of _________ at the University of California, Irvine, is currently considering Professor __________ for appointment as Associate Professor with tenure. For such appointments, the University of California requires letters of evaluation from experts in the field. I am asking if you would be willing to serve this function.

We realize that this request is an imposition on your time. However, the department would be extremely grateful if you could provide us with your candid opinion. We would further appreciate it if you could compare Professor _________’s research with that of others in the field at a similar stage in their careers. Please specify the leading departments (with the most rigorous standards for scholarship) where scholars pursuing the same kinds of work as Professor__________ are appointed.  In your judgment, does Professor ________ meet the standards for appointment to a similar position in these departments?  Would you argue that you would support Professor ________ at your institution? Any information you could provide about Professor ___________’s performance as an undergraduate instructor and/or as a supervisor and mentor of graduate students would be most helpful. Similarly, we would appreciate any comments you might have on his/her service contributions to his/her professional field (e.g., reviewing of papers, conference activities, or promotion of collegial sharing among his/her peers).

Although the contents of your letter may be passed on to the candidate at prescribed stages of the review process, your identity will be held in confidence. The material made available will lack the letterhead, the signature block, and material below the latter. Therefore, material that would identify you, particularly your relationship to the candidate, should be placed below the signature block. In any legal proceeding or other situation in which the source of the confidential information is sought, the University does its utmost to protect the identity of such sources.

I am enclosing Professor ______________’s vitae and publication list. Thank you for your assistance.

Sincerely,

Dean/Chair/Executive Committee Chair

Enclosures

Exhibit C — Sample Appointment Letter: Professor (Step VII)

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Dear Dr._______________:

I am writing to request your assistance in the preparation of a personnel case for Professor ___________ in the Department of _______________ at the University of California, Irvine. Professor __________ is being considered for appointment as Professor, Step VII, effective July 1, ____. To acquaint you with our system, the University of California salary scale for full professor appointments has nine steps (Step I to Step IX). Typically, the normal period in a step (between Steps I and V) is three years. Steps VI to IX are reserved for Professors of great scholarly distinction and national or international recognition, highly meritorious service and excellent teaching.

It would be very helpful to me and to our Department if you would be able to provide a letter in which you evaluate the activities of Professor______________ in the areas of teaching, research and creative work, professional competence and activities, and university and public service, and assess the extent to which you believe Professor _________ is qualified for the proposed appointment.  Please specify the leading departments (with the most rigorous standards for scholarship) where scholars pursuing the same kinds of work as Professor__________ are appointed.  In your judgment, does Professor ________ meet the standards for appointment to a similar position in these departments?  Would you argue that you would support Professor ________ at your institution?

Although the contents of your letter may be passed on to the candidate at prescribed stages of the review process, your identity will be held in confidence. The material made available will lack the letterhead, the signature block, and material below the latter. Therefore, material that would identify you, particularly your relationship to the candidate, should be placed below the signature block. In any legal proceeding or other situation in which the source of the confidential information is sought, the University does its utmost to protect the identity of such sources.

Your assistance in this matter would be greatly appreciated, and I look forward to receiving your response soon. Please call me at (949)________ if I can provide any further information.

Sincerely,

Dean/Chair/Executive Committee Chair

Exhibit D — Sample Appointment Letter: Professor, Above Scale

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Dear Dr.____________:

The Department of _____________ at the University of California, Irvine, is proposing the appointment of Dr. ___________ as Professor, Above Scale. This designation is reserved for scholars of the highest distinction whose work is internationally recognized and acclaimed and whose teaching performance is excellent. Recommendations for appointment at this level must be supported by external letters from leading scientists. We would greatly appreciate your evaluation of Dr._______________’s scientific work and his/her position in the field of ____________. It would be helpful if you would compare him/her with other scientists of comparable stature.  Please specify the leading departments (with the most rigorous standards for scholarship) where scholars pursuing the same kinds of work as Dr.__________  are appointed.  In your judgment, does Dr. ________ meet the standards for appointment to a similar position in these departments?  Would you argue that you would support Dr. ________ at your institution?

We would be most appreciative if you could send your evaluation by _____________, or at your earliest convenience if you cannot meet that date. To facilitate your evaluation, I am enclosing (1) Dr.______________’s curriculum vitae and list of publications, and (2) a brief statement identifying his most significant contributions.

Although the contents of your letter may be passed on to the candidate at prescribed stages of the review process, your identity will be held in confidence. The material made available will lack the letterhead, the signature block, and material below the latter. Therefore, material that would identify you, particularly your relationship to the candidate, should be placed below the signature block. In any legal proceeding or other situation in which the source of the confidential information is sought, the University does its utmost to protect the identity of such sources.

I would like to thank you on behalf of the Department of __________ for your assistance. I realize that this is an imposition on you, but the opinions of distinguished outside scholars weigh heavily in consideration of faculty appointments at the University of California. As an authority in the field, your opinions will enter significantly in the deliberations of the department and the university administration. If you would like additional information, please feel free to call me at (949) ___________.

Sincerely,

Dean/Chair/Executive Committee Chair

Enclosures

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