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I could get 3 glowing rec letters from pharmacists but none from a professor. Can I still apply?

Discussion in 'Pre-Pharmacy' started by atrinity001, Sep 28, 2014.

  1. atrinity001


    Sep 28, 2014
    Some details about me:
    - Completed all pre-pharm prerequisites while in community college - got mostly A's for them. That's around 4-5 years ago.
    - Transferred to a university and earned my bachelors degree in biology- got a cocktail of grades from A,B,B-,C's lol :( Most of the classes are not prerequisites for pharm school though. I graduated 2 years ago.
    - Wasn't sure yet if pharmacy was for me so I neglected to get a rec letter from any of my professors
    - I started working as a pharmacy technician right after graduating. I got 2 years of experiences and now really sure that I would love to pursue pharmacy as my life-long career.
    -Emailed two possible profs to see if they can write me a letter of rec. One already responded no cuz it's been so long since I took his class. Other no response and it's already nearing the pharmcas deadline :(
    - The pharmacists I work with, all three of them, are willing to write me a glowing letter of rec. I can probably ask our district manager to write me one as well.

    I could take another class at a community college this spring to get a letter of rec but that would mean waiting another year before I can apply. I kind of want to at least try this year but I'm not really sure if I am even qualified.

    Has any of got accepted to a pharmacy school without a letter of rec from a professor? Should I even try applying this year or wait until next year?

    Thank you so much for your inputs!
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  3. romaniangirl

    romaniangirl 2+ Year Member

    Jul 19, 2014
    Houston, TX
    It really depends on the school. Like University of Houston, for example, requires a letter from a professor. If you don't have one, they won't even consider your application. Your best bet would be to contact the schools you are interested in applying to and asking the admissions adviser if it is absolutely necessary or not. Many times they will let you know how stringent they are with these requirements.
  4. stablecarbocation


    Sep 18, 2014
    If you haven't already done so, offer the professors some sort of resume/CV. Something like "I can provide you with a CV to assist you in writing the letter". Good luck.
    romaniangirl likes this.
  5. Lucky One

    Lucky One 2+ Year Member

    Jun 8, 2013
    This is pretty much a good standard to do with professors since most of the time they won't know you too well as say a co-worker who works many hours beside you.

    It depends on the school if they need one or just "recommend one". Having 3 recs from Pharmacists is really good and shows your pharmacy experience but it would be tough in your case if they required some from professors. I would apply to good schools that didn't require one, you'll probably have a high chance of getting in from gauging at your stats.
  6. KidPharmD

    KidPharmD Pediatric ER Pharmacist Pharmacist Faculty 2+ Year Member

    Jan 21, 2014
    If the school doesn't require a professor the you could still apply. However, know that the lack of a professor will stand out to many interviewers. As we require "professional recommendations" but don't specify work or school related, we get a mix of both. It is pretty common to get all professors from students with only recent or no work experience. I can't think of the last application I saw without a professor at all though.
  7. DrDrugs2012

    DrDrugs2012 5+ Year Member

    Feb 8, 2011
    Rules about coursework and letters of recommendations have a tendency to be more like guidelines which fit the needs of 99% of applicants but schools are willing to overlook for the 1%. For example, many schools have a time limit on coursework, but they tend not to hold fast to that for someone who still works in the sciences. In the same way, you can ask schools for an exception due to the fact that you are too far removed from your courses. It is a reasonable request and one I could see most pharmacy schools accepting.

    That being said, since your grades at a four year school are all over the map, I would highly advise securing a faculty recommendation because a glowing one might help the committee overlook some of those C's if they are led to believe that those C's are not representative of your typical work product.

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