• AMA with Certified Student Loan Professional

    Join SDN on December 7th at 6:00 PM Eastern as we host Andrew Paulson of StudentLoanAdvice.com for an AMA webinar. He'll be answering your questions about how to best manage your student loans. Register now!

bad experience with PCOM admissions

TAI786

Member
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Jan 8, 2005
32
0
39
Michigan
    I don't know if I'm the only one that had this annoying experience! I guess PCOM is really anal about letters of rec being sent via premed committees/deans/career services center. The problem is the university I go to has around 30K students but doesn't have a premed committee (just a single, part time, informal pre-med advisor), the Career Services Center refuses to compile or forward data in packets because of the huge amount of students, there's no pre-professional committee of any sort, and the Deans or Department Heads cannot handle this kind of thing. So I called and talked to an admissions advisor at PCOM and she told me to have them (letters of rec) sent out individually. I did just that, and when I called a few times to verify on the delay they simply told me that my application was being processed. I didn't think it was wierd, and that maybe they'd put my app on hold. So I did the routine call this week and was finally told that my letters of rec were probably thrown out because they were not sent in a packet. I tried to explain the situation to the lady on the phone, I don't know if she's the admissions director or what, but she was the most obnoxious and snotty person I've encountered in my entire med school app process. After I managed to convey my problem (through her barrage of irksome remarks) she told me to go to the career services center again. Mind you, I was still perfectly pleasant up till this point and agreed to go. Once again, at the CSC they told me "we have around 30K students at this university, we've never offered this service but if it's being taken that seriously we'll work something out, just have the letters of rec forwarded here by the professors, find out for us what exactly the format is for the letter we're supposed to include in the packet, etc. because we've never done this before". So I called the admissions number at PCOM again and got the same lady and when I told her that the CSC agreed to do it but they wanted an idea of the exact format of the packet the lady just cut me off and said "Well if your school doesn't know the format then how am I supposed to?" and hung up on me. Running out of options I decided to sign up for an appointment with the part-time pre-med advisor (it takes about 2-3 weeks to get in a time to see him) and was headed in that direction when I got so frickin lucky that I bumped into him in a hallway and implored him to take a few minutes out of his time to help me out (it wasn't his office hours for either his classes or the premed advising). Thankfully he was nice enough to agree, and he called PCOM, in my presence, and from his expression I could tell he got the same lady and was getting the same treatment! He hung up with a "wow!" and said that she had told him to have the letters all forwarded to him, and to include a summary of them for the institution before sending them out to PCOM. I guess when he told her that he's only an informal premed advisor and doesn't have the time to write more than "Please accept these letters of recommendations as testimony to the student's abilities", the lady's response to that was along the lines of "I'm not sure if that'll be good enough, but go ahead". So now I have to have all the waivers / info to be included for the people writing the letters of rec resent to my house (apparently they don't have them available online as most other COMs/SOMs do), have the professors march them up to the premed advisor, and have him send them out in a packet to PCOM, twice (for the Philadelphia and ATL branches). Granted, my uni's lack of resources could have avoided this problem, that's no excuse for the behavior or counter-productiveness of the people I talked to from PCOM admissions.
     

    michelleDO

    Junior Member
    10+ Year Member
    7+ Year Member
    Dec 7, 2004
    35
    0
      i feel really bad reading your story. If the part time advisor is sooo busy, why don't you just quickly hire the LOR mailing service. Even if he agreed to write you a committee letter, I would still be a bit apprehensive about the content because being busy, he will not write a good one. There are many schools that don't have a premed advisor, so their students use this mailing service. How did other schools that you applied to respond?
      Stop the begging and waiting, just quickly do the mailing service. Good luck

      michelle
       
      About the Ads

      tkim

      10 cc's cordrazine
      15+ Year Member
      Aug 2, 2002
      7,628
      380
      New England
      1. Attending Physician
        Docgeorge said:
        I think I had the same lady when I was going through the whole process. God she's just plain rude. PCOM might want to think about some sensitivity trainig for her.

        Had the same one myself - told me that they *required* a committee letter, and would not entertain any explanation as to why I could not provide one.

        She was very rude, and IIRC, was the admissions director.
         

        OrthoFixation

        1K Member
        7+ Year Member
        15+ Year Member
        Jun 26, 2003
        1,095
        1
        Livin' on Tulsa Time
          Sorry for your grief OP. I used Interfolio.com to send my letters or recommendation. Their was no combined school letter, although they make it look similar to as if it came from the university with a "Career Development Center" verbiage or so. I have been out of ugrad for some time though.

          Mine were accepted by PCOM-both. I declined the interview in Philly, but was accepted in GA.

          I hope your situation improves.
           

          trypto82

          Full Member
          10+ Year Member
          5+ Year Member
          Apr 18, 2004
          143
          1
            My experience with PCOM was much like yours! The undergrad school I attended did not have a formal committee either and I went through an identical situation of sending about 4 rounds of LORs. After talking to them over the phone and "communicating" my problem so many times, I eventually gave up. They left such a bad impression on me, that I stopped all consideration of attending their school. This was unfortunate because their school was high on my list. In no way am I saying that it is a bad school, because I know that it is an excellent school with many great opportunities. The admissions department, however, would benefit from a few changes :thumbup:
             

            Khenon

            1K Member
            10+ Year Member
            5+ Year Member
            Sep 30, 2004
            1,025
            2
            Rochester, MN
              Doesn't PCOM list that you can have a pre-med advisor or the Dean of your college send a letter (along with individual professor letters) in lieu of a committee letter? I've read their website several times, and this is what I've interpretted. My school doesn't have a committee either, but I was just going to have my advisor send a letter, along with other individual letters. So they're going to just throw it all away once they get it, because it wasn't all sent as a packet? That seems like false advertising on their part. Look on their website under "application process." It looks pretty clear to me that there is an alternative to the committee packet. This seems really unfair and unjustified.
               

              tkim

              10 cc's cordrazine
              15+ Year Member
              Aug 2, 2002
              7,628
              380
              New England
              1. Attending Physician
                Khenon said:
                Doesn't PCOM list that you can have a pre-med advisor or the Dean of your college send a letter (along with individual professor letters) in lieu of a committee letter? I've read their website several times, and this is what I've interpretted. My school doesn't have a committee either, but I was just going to have my advisor send a letter, along with other individual letters. So they're going to just throw it all away once they get it, because it wasn't all sent as a packet? That seems like false advertising on their part. Look on their website under "application process." It looks pretty clear to me that there is an alternative to the committee packet. This seems really unfair and unjustified.

                When I called and asked about alternatives, the woman replied "committee letter - nothing else". When I pointed out that the letter from them stated that a letter from my pre-med advisor (whom I'd never met) would be acceptable, she first said "where was *that* written", then she said "well, the letter was wrong - we only accept committee letters".

                The rudest of *all* the schools I communicated with.
                 

                irishlaydi

                Senior Member
                10+ Year Member
                5+ Year Member
                Jun 27, 2004
                276
                0
                Maine
                  Khenon said:
                  Doesn't PCOM list that you can have a pre-med advisor or the Dean of your college send a letter (along with individual professor letters) in lieu of a committee letter? I've read their website several times, and this is what I've interpretted. My school doesn't have a committee either, but I was just going to have my advisor send a letter, along with other individual letters. So they're going to just throw it all away once they get it, because it wasn't all sent as a packet? That seems like false advertising on their part. Look on their website under "application process." It looks pretty clear to me that there is an alternative to the committee packet. This seems really unfair and unjustified.

                  HI. I had my letters sent individually back in November. I have saved emails from one of the admissions assistants saying that it was perfectly ok to have individual letters sent. I even made sure each of my letters (advisor, D.O., professor, etc...) would fulfill the requirement. At the time they said the letters arrived safely. However, I just recently sent my supplemental app. and am now worried after reading this post that they have gotten rid of the letters. I just sent an email, and will post if I get a response. Otherwise i'm calling them later. They had them since NOvember. Do you guys think that because of the delay in time btwn letters arriving and secondary arriving that they threw them away??? Just want some advice or opinions. Hopefully they get back to me soon! :luck:
                   

                  UNE2009LMD

                  DocSmiles
                  10+ Year Member
                  5+ Year Member
                  Oct 7, 2004
                  175
                  0
                  Maine Bound!
                    TAI786 said:
                    I don't know if I'm the only one that had this annoying experience! I guess PCOM is really anal about letters of rec being sent via premed committees/deans/career services center. The problem is the university I go to has around 30K students but doesn't have a premed committee (just a single, part time, informal pre-med advisor), the Career Services Center refuses to compile or forward data in packets because of the huge amount of students, there's no pre-professional committee of any sort, and the Deans or Department Heads cannot handle this kind of thing. So I called and talked to an admissions advisor at PCOM and she told me to have them (letters of rec) sent out individually. I did just that, and when I called a few times to verify on the delay they simply told me that my application was being processed. I didn't think it was wierd, and that maybe they'd put my app on hold. So I did the routine call this week and was finally told that my letters of rec were probably thrown out because they were not sent in a packet. I tried to explain the situation to the lady on the phone, I don't know if she's the admissions director or what, but she was the most obnoxious and snotty person I've encountered in my entire med school app process. After I managed to convey my problem (through her barrage of irksome remarks) she told me to go to the career services center again. Mind you, I was still perfectly pleasant up till this point and agreed to go. Once again, at the CSC they told me "we have around 30K students at this university, we've never offered this service but if it's being taken that seriously we'll work something out, just have the letters of rec forwarded here by the professors, find out for us what exactly the format is for the letter we're supposed to include in the packet, etc. because we've never done this before". So I called the admissions number at PCOM again and got the same lady and when I told her that the CSC agreed to do it but they wanted an idea of the exact format of the packet the lady just cut me off and said "Well if your school doesn't know the format then how am I supposed to?" and hung up on me. Running out of options I decided to sign up for an appointment with the part-time pre-med advisor (it takes about 2-3 weeks to get in a time to see him) and was headed in that direction when I got so frickin lucky that I bumped into him in a hallway and implored him to take a few minutes out of his time to help me out (it wasn't his office hours for either his classes or the premed advising). Thankfully he was nice enough to agree, and he called PCOM, in my presence, and from his expression I could tell he got the same lady and was getting the same treatment! He hung up with a "wow!" and said that she had told him to have the letters all forwarded to him, and to include a summary of them for the institution before sending them out to PCOM. I guess when he told her that he's only an informal premed advisor and doesn't have the time to write more than "Please accept these letters of recommendations as testimony to the student's abilities", the lady's response to that was along the lines of "I'm not sure if that'll be good enough, but go ahead". So now I have to have all the waivers / info to be included for the people writing the letters of rec resent to my house (apparently they don't have them available online as most other COMs/SOMs do), have the professors march them up to the premed advisor, and have him send them out in a packet to PCOM, twice (for the Philadelphia and ATL branches). Granted, my uni's lack of resources could have avoided this problem, that's no excuse for the behavior or counter-productiveness of the people I talked to from PCOM admissions.

                    ahh. That's harsh. You should get that lady's name and report to adminsitration about her repetitive rudeness. :(
                     
                    About the Ads

                    Alpha&Omega

                    Rev. 22:13
                    10+ Year Member
                    5+ Year Member
                    Oct 13, 2004
                    54
                    0
                      Khenon said:
                      Doesn't PCOM list that you can have a pre-med advisor or the Dean of your college send a letter (along with individual professor letters) in lieu of a committee letter? I've read their website several times, and this is what I've interpretted. My school doesn't have a committee either, but I was just going to have my advisor send a letter, along with other individual letters. So they're going to just throw it all away once they get it, because it wasn't all sent as a packet? That seems like false advertising on their part. Look on their website under "application process." It looks pretty clear to me that there is an alternative to the committee packet. This seems really unfair and unjustified.

                      "Applicants are required to submit a letter of recommendation from the premedical committee or premedical advisor of the undergraduate college that grants or will grant a bachelor's degree, regardless of your academic major, course of study or graduation. If that is not possible, a letter from your academic advisor or Dean of the same institution may substitute. Another letter of recommendation, preferably from an osteopathic physician, is suggested but is not required."


                      OP, i'm sorry to hear about your experience :(

                      i hope you have other choices of schools available

                      good luck :thumbup:
                       

                      Khenon

                      1K Member
                      10+ Year Member
                      5+ Year Member
                      Sep 30, 2004
                      1,025
                      2
                      Rochester, MN
                        Well, frankly PCOM is not my top choice school, so I guess I'll send in my materials and if they get thrown away or rejected or whatever then I'll cross them off my list. This sounds like too much heartache for one school. I hear they show some preference to in-staters anyway, so I'm sure my chances are slim. Oh well.
                         

                        Taus

                        .
                        Staff member
                        Administrator
                        Volunteer Staff
                        Verified Expert
                        15+ Year Member
                        Feb 1, 2005
                        4,202
                        958
                        Philly
                        1. Attending Physician
                          I'm honestly surprised to see this conversation come up. The admissions people at PCOM have been nothing but friendly and helpful on the phone. I even left a message with the head of admissions and she called me back the next day and apologized for it not being earlier. She then looked further into my question and even called me back again after business hours. I will also go as far as saying that this post contains the first negative opinions I have ever heard about PCOM. Needless to say, PCOM is my top choice, but to each his own. I'm sorry to hear that you had an experience like this.
                           

                          tkim

                          10 cc's cordrazine
                          15+ Year Member
                          Aug 2, 2002
                          7,628
                          380
                          New England
                          1. Attending Physician
                            Taus said:
                            I'm honestly surprised to see this conversation come up. The admissions people at PCOM have been nothing but friendly and helpful on the phone. I even left a message with the head of admissions and she called me back the next day and apologized for it not being earlier. She then looked further into my question and even called me back again after business hours. I will also go as far as saying that this post contains the first negative opinions I have ever heard about PCOM. Needless to say, PCOM is my top choice, but to each his own. I'm sorry to hear that you had an experience like this.

                            http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=53742&highlight=pcom+committee+letter
                             

                            irishlaydi

                            Senior Member
                            10+ Year Member
                            5+ Year Member
                            Jun 27, 2004
                            276
                            0
                            Maine
                              Khenon said:
                              So this has been a cronic problem . . . interesting.

                              FYI: I hope I get into COMP too! :)


                              ok, so after being completely freaked out from reading this thread I got up the nerve to call them. I was of course expecting the "mean" lady, but thank goodness I got someone nicer! I just wanted to post what she said to me, may help some others potentially. My situation was that I had my letters sent back in November, and just sent my secondary recently. So I asked if my letters had arrived and she said they will not start a file for anyone until their secondary arrives. *momentary lapse of breathing* However, then she said they DO NOT throw any letters away. They hang onto all letters until the application arrives. If application never arrives they throw them away. But, she assured me that they keep all letters they receive (and I sent 5 separate ones so I pray they are all there). She did say I had to wait about a week to find out if everything is ok...which is no good, but i am just not going to think about it til then. Although it is a week wasted if I do have to resend letters. good luck to you all, and i'm very sorry for the OP's difficulties with admissions, definately not a good thing. I spoke with someone named Monica who was really nice, so maybe people can ask for her when they call :D :luck:
                               

                              Khenon

                              1K Member
                              10+ Year Member
                              5+ Year Member
                              Sep 30, 2004
                              1,025
                              2
                              Rochester, MN
                                irishlaydi said:
                                ok, so after being completely freaked out from reading this thread I got up the nerve to call them. I was of course expecting the "mean" lady, but thank goodness I got someone nicer! I just wanted to post what she said to me, may help some others potentially. My situation was that I had my letters sent back in November, and just sent my secondary recently. So I asked if my letters had arrived and she said they will not start a file for anyone until their secondary arrives. *momentary lapse of breathing* However, then she said they DO NOT throw any letters away. They hang onto all letters until the application arrives. If application never arrives they throw them away. But, she assured me that they keep all letters they receive (and I sent 5 separate ones so I pray they are all there). She did say I had to wait about a week to find out if everything is ok...which is no good, but i am just not going to think about it til then. Although it is a week wasted if I do have to resend letters. good luck to you all, and i'm very sorry for the OP's difficulties with admissions, definately not a good thing. I spoke with someone named Monica who was really nice, so maybe people can ask for her when they call :D :luck:
                                Good info. Thanks for that post. Yeah, I just plan on sending my letters and secondary, and that's it. I guess if it doesn't work out, then it doesn't work out. But I'm not going to give myself a heart attack over it. Best of luck, for those of you applying to PCOM!
                                 

                                WestcoastMedicine

                                Senior Member
                                10+ Year Member
                                7+ Year Member
                                Nov 6, 2004
                                401
                                1
                                New York
                                1. Fellow [Any Field]
                                  I went to a school with about 5K students and we have neither a premed committee or advisors. I just had seperate science professors write letters of recommendations and they sent them in individually and I never had a problem. Maybe they are really frustrated since they are at the peak of the admissions process, I don't know what to tell you, but they were all very friendly with me. I had my letter sent out as soon as I sent in the AACOMAS app so I was worried they might loose the letters since they had just received my primary, do you know the name of the woman you spoke with at admissions? Maybe ask for the director and explain how you were treated.
                                   

                                  Khenon

                                  1K Member
                                  10+ Year Member
                                  5+ Year Member
                                  Sep 30, 2004
                                  1,025
                                  2
                                  Rochester, MN
                                    I just thought I'd resurrect (sp?) this old thread. As someone who had to send individual letters, I thought I'd ease other's minds. There was no problem whatsoever. I didn't call and ask, or anything. I just sent individual letters, called a couple of weeks later, and they ("Monica" actually) told me I was complete. No issues. I did make sure that my academic advisor noted that he was such in his letter, so PCOM knew I was fulfilling that requirement. Anyway, after all this bad press about the committee letter thing I thought some of you might be relieved to hear that it doesn't seem to be an issue. At least not in my case.
                                     

                                    DrSinger

                                    Junior Member
                                    10+ Year Member
                                    5+ Year Member
                                    Mar 28, 2005
                                    10
                                    0
                                      irishlaydi said:
                                      HI. I had my letters sent individually back in November. I have saved emails from one of the admissions assistants saying that it was perfectly ok to have individual letters sent. I even made sure each of my letters (advisor, D.O., professor, etc...) would fulfill the requirement. At the time they said the letters arrived safely. However, I just recently sent my supplemental app. and am now worried after reading this post that they have gotten rid of the letters. I just sent an email, and will post if I get a response. Otherwise i'm calling them later. They had them since NOvember. Do you guys think that because of the delay in time btwn letters arriving and secondary arriving that they threw them away??? Just want some advice or opinions. Hopefully they get back to me soon! :luck:

                                      I also had my letters sent individually - sort of. While my extremely large school does do committee letters, my DO letter was a stretch. It was sent individually, and there was no problem with it. They got all my letters and invited me for an interview. I got an acceptance letter 3 wks after I interviewed. PCOM 2009!
                                       

                                      katiedid919

                                      Med student
                                      10+ Year Member
                                      5+ Year Member
                                      Mar 21, 2005
                                      37
                                      0
                                      Cleveland, OH
                                        I would have to agree that i'm not pleased with PCOM and how the admissions process is going. My application has been in for well over a month and a half now and they are unable to locate 2 of my LOR (which should have arrived a month and a half before my application as I recorded the dates sent out) saying they're still processing applications-not to worry. The staff have been telling me for weeks now to call back at the end of the week to check on my application because it should be processed by then and every week they tell me the same thing-"oh we're still working on it". I just don't understand how letters disappear like that. I am so relieved that I'm already into another school (yay OU-COM!), because PCOM has made it stressful to apply there. I realize I was at the end of the wire turning in my application but the lack of concern by the admissions staff regarding my application worries me. Now that its so late in the process, I bet that if the letters don't turn up I won't be considered for admission.
                                         

                                        PoohDoc

                                        Junior Member
                                        10+ Year Member
                                        5+ Year Member
                                        Mar 22, 2005
                                        30
                                        0
                                          Wow, I didn't realize PCOM admissions was so bad about rec letters. I also came from a big school that didn't have a pre-professional committe, so I e-mailed Carol Fox and she easily approved 3 letters coallated by my graduate letter service department. She was actually very prompt in responding to my e-mails and questions about the application. But since I've turned in my secondary, their office has been horrible about notifying me about the status of my application. It's so late in the process, I wish they would just tell me that I'm rejected so I don't have to wonder if I might get an interview after putting in a deposit for another school.
                                           

                                          eag

                                          Member
                                          10+ Year Member
                                          Mar 13, 2005
                                          145
                                          4
                                          NY
                                          1. Resident [Any Field]
                                            I too had a problem with the recommendation thing. I graduated from my undergrad, four years ago, so I provided a pre-med letter from my post-bac program along with individual letters I gathered as an undergrad. So, I thought my file was complete and ready to go. I come to find out that all the rec I provided wasn't good enough and my file was considered incomplete. I had to call my undergrad and find the Dean of my school, tell them my problem and have a Dean's letter sent on top of all the other recs I provided. I'm a far distance from my undergrad so it took a long time to get that letter sent. PCOM finally receives it and now my app is complete, late in the game. And since then, I haven't heard from them for an interview. I've called numerous times, trying to find out if my app has been reviewed or now, if they are still interviewing and I've got nothing but attitude. I even asked when do they stop interviewing and they wouldn't give me an answer to that. So I don't know about PCOM, but it is a lot of hassle for just one school.
                                             

                                            shane679

                                            Member
                                            10+ Year Member
                                            5+ Year Member
                                            Jan 29, 2005
                                            41
                                            0
                                              Perhaps those that are having some issues with PCOM, should go to the Is PCOM still intervewing thread. In that thread, there is the name of the admissions director and maybe she can help you all out. Hope it works out for you.

                                              csh
                                               

                                              katiedid919

                                              Med student
                                              10+ Year Member
                                              5+ Year Member
                                              Mar 21, 2005
                                              37
                                              0
                                              Cleveland, OH
                                                I posted earlier talking about my PCOM situation of calling admissions for weeks regarding my status. Each time I called they couldn't find my recommendations, but they said I shouldn't send them over again because they'd probably turn up. So I call today and find out that now they're not accepting one of my letters because my premedical advisor just put that she was my advisor on the letter and did not specify that she was my "premedical" advisor...so now my letter doesn't count... I was told if my advisor could if submitted information in writing it would count, but here it is almost the middle of April after I had been calling for weeks and my application isnt considered complete and I've spent however much it was to apply and do my secondary! At this point even if I completed my application its pretty much too late to interview, so basically i just threw money down the drain. To top it off whoever I talked to was extremely rude! I am so frustrated with PCOM and I wonder what the rest of the school is like if they're admissions staff is so disrespectful and irresponsible. :(
                                                 
                                                About the Ads
                                                This thread is more than 16 years old.

                                                Your message may be considered spam for the following reasons:

                                                1. Your new thread title is very short, and likely is unhelpful.
                                                2. Your reply is very short and likely does not add anything to the thread.
                                                3. Your reply is very long and likely does not add anything to the thread.
                                                4. It is very likely that it does not need any further discussion and thus bumping it serves no purpose.
                                                5. Your message is mostly quotes or spoilers.
                                                6. Your reply has occurred very quickly after a previous reply and likely does not add anything to the thread.
                                                7. This thread is locked.