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away rotations


New Member
10+ Year Member
Feb 11, 2007
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  1. Medical Student
hello all, I'm sorry if this is covered elsewhere, but i couldn't find it...I'm in between my 3rd and 4th year taking a year off to do oncology research and now trying to figure out where to go for away rotations. I understand that you need a strong LOR from a "big" institution, but my question is which institutions qualify? Do you have to go to MD Anderson or could somewhere like U of Chicago give a strong letter? I want to be smart about where I apply for aways but also be realistic about some places that would be more realistic for me to match.
Away rotations are a great way to see other programs. I would pick a program that you are very interested in going to. Probably your advisor could give you the best advice. One thing you should think about is how many spots the program is offering. Harvard, MDACC, MSK, Penn all offer at least 4 positions each year. Definetly make sure at least that the program is accepting applications. I have known people who have signed up for a rotation only to find out the program is not taking any residents that year. You should also know that it may not always be in your best interest to get a letter from a "big name". You really need to make sure the person knows you well and will write you a great letter. I would make sure that you have enough letters from your home institution, you can always substitute one.


New Member
10+ Year Member
Jan 20, 2006
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  1. Medical Student
I will be doing a 4th year away rotation at MDACC this fall. I have heard Dr. Cox's name, but who are the other names to request to: A) get a great letter that will carry weight on interviews or B) get a wonderful experience

thanks--first post in this forum


Someone said it up there, but I think most people can agree, a well-written letter from a 'star' is worth something. But, a letter that says you can walk on water from a rad-onc that isn't a big name is worth more than a cookie cutter from Dr. Nick from Hollywood Upstairs Med School Dept of Rad Onc.

As for rotating at Chicago ... not a lot of volume, super nice faculty and residents, got an abstract and a 2nd authorship out of it, but no interview.

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