Health Advising

Letters of Recommendation and Your Autobiography

Professional schools will request that letters of recommendation from faculty members be sent as part of your application. Rather than several letters, the Health Sciences Committee will write one composite letter, a practice usually preferred by the professional schools. In addition, letters from other sources might be appropriate. If you have been employed in a health care setting, if your major is not in the natural sciences, or if you are a transfer student, supplementary letters can be very helpful. The general criterion of an additional letter is that it provides the professional school with relevant information they can receive in no other way.

The purpose of the letter is to give the admissions committee an idea of your personal qualities - qualities like motivation, compassion, maturity, integrity and interpersonal skills necessary to complete the clinical portion of medical training, as well as to become an effective practitioner. We consider our own impression of you, in and out of class, along with your academic record, MCAT scores and an autobiography that you write and submit to us early in the spring semester of your junior year. One (undisclosed) member of the committee who knows you well will write an initial rough draft of a letter. That draft is then discussed by the committee and modified for the approval of all members of the committee.