Stephanie's Blog


My Favorite Reference Letter

One of the things I hold very dear to my heart are the words spoken about my from those I respect the most.  The people who have taken the time to really, truly get to know me and what I'm all about are the people who can speak without false judgements.  These are the people for who a mutual influence occured at one point in our lives.  I am going to post a letter of reference written about me not too long ago, after completing a masters degree program at Antioch University in management and leadership.  I couldn't have picked a better program of study, nor a better place to shape my learning experience!

Reading this letter strengthens me during weak times and reminds me of the inner fire that was re-ignited from within during my studies at Antioch.  This letter was written by my practicum advisor, a respectable non-profit consultant and wonderful person, Lizann Peyton:

I have known Stephanie since the summer of 2008 in my role as an 
Adjunct Faculty member, supervising Practicum students in the 
Organization and Management program at Antioch New England Graduate 

For Practicum, Stephanie was required to design a 9-month independent 
learning project around her own personal and professional goals, and 
to set and meet milestones in a self-directed study, under monthly 
supervision. She shaped her Practicum around building knowledge of 
social marketing techniques, and developing herself as a teacher and 
leader to help work teams make the leap into new channels of work and 

The essence of Practicum is blending together the personal and 
professional sides of learning, and using "self-knowledge" to develop 
one's leadership abilities in the community.  What struck me at the 
beginning was Stephanie's clear sense of who she is, her energy and 
enthusiasm for the project, and a compelling vision of how she wanted 
to develop her personal, professional, and leadership skills.

Stephanie stood out in class as a highly self-motivated and active "do-
er."  She set big goals in her Practicum, and was consistently well 
organized, ahead of her deadlines, and self-disciplined in staying on 
track with minimal supervision.  She is pro-active in asking for 
coaching when she needs it, yet persistent and determined to teach 
herself how to find the knowledge she needs.  She worked quickly and 
efficiently, and showed a lot of originality in problem-solving along 
the way.  Her writing is solid and well formed, her verbal 
communication is excellent, and she shows outstanding teamwork skills.

Stephanie also stands out for me in her deep desire to continually 
learn and challenge herself.  As her Practicum progressed, she reached 
out openly for feedback and support from her colleagues. Each month, 
she returned with success stories about pushing her comfort zone and 
making breakthroughs in her learning - and then immediately set 
herself another "stretch" goal.

As a person, Stephanie is delightful.  She is upbeat and positive, and 
consistently energized our practicum class each month.  She showed 
great attentiveness to other students' needs, offering support and 
advice that seemed right on-target each time.  I've enjoyed staying in 
touch with her since graduation last spring, and hearing of her steady 
professional progress.

In sum, Stephanie is a woman who is "going places" - one of those 
people you notice in early and mid-career and know you should continue 
to watch, because there is great talent and momentum packaged with 
personal skills that impress those around her.  I would consider 
Stephanie a great asset to any organization she works with, and 
recommend her as someone who brings passion and excellence to the job.

Please let me know if I can answer any questions.


Lizann Peyton
Organization Development and Capacity-Building Consulting
Norwich, VT

Comment balloon 2 commentsStephanie Jacques • March 03 2011 10:03AM
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