leia03

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Hi,

I am an applicant for Fall 2011 admission and have a question about the committee letter.

It seems like most schools want applicants to have a cover letter from school committee. But my school has very stick deadline, for example, unless I take MCAT by the end of April, they would not allow to apply in this cycle through HPEC committee.

I am signed up for the MCAT on April 23rd, but I feel like I don't have enough time to reach the score I want by then. :scared: Unfortunately, I don't want to wait until next year to apply, either.

I can postpone my test day til May or early June then I have more time to prepare for MCAT and still can apply for this cycle, but in that case I would not get a letter from school committee.

My question is how important a committee letter is. Is it a requirement?
Would I look bad if I don't get one from school?

Should I choose a committee letter over MCAT score? (i know postponing exam by one or two months wouldn't guarantee that my score will be improved significantly, but at least I can be more prepared..)

I graduate May 2009 and doing a post bac program at NIH(working full time)

I talked people about this and they are giving me different advise, I am CONFUSED!!!

I need your advise, please help!!

Thank you
 

slowbutsteady

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Some med schools require you to have a committee letter if your undergrad does committee letters.

Why are you linking your MCAT to your committee letter?

Just do everything for your application so that it all goes in in early June, including the committee letter. If the MCAT gets entered later, no problem. Your verification will wait until the scores are in, but the rest will be ready to go.
 

LizzyM

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If your school produces more than a dozen pre-meds per year, the most popular med schools among applicants from your undergrad will know that your school has a committee letter and they will be surprised if you don't have one. It could hurt you because it will raise eyebrows. A poor MCAT will hurt more than the lack of a committee letter but ask yourself if you can every be ready for the MCAT. You are already a year behind your peer group. There is a time to say, "I've done all I can and it is time to take the plunge."
 

bamtuba

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^what she said.

I did a post-bac at a place that is VERY obnoxious about deadlines with committee letters and had a similar situation.

But when it came time to pick the letter up, the school told us "all that matters are stats, you don't have to apply too early." In other words, unless you were one of the first people asking for that letter they would just hold off on finishing it for you until they were ready. Ridiculous, IMO.

I took the MCAT 2-3 months sooner than my peers in this program, and scored a 31. Others scored 34+, but applied late due to preparation for the MCAT and a wait for the committee letter.

Result?

I got 12 interviews, including JHU and Mayo. My peers got 1-3 interviews, mostly state schools and the associated university's med school (and there was at least one person who had a far better academic record, much higher MCAT score, AND equally dedicated background to me with even more experience doing various things).

*APPLY EARLY AT ALL COSTS AND GET THAT LETTER!

*unless you REALLY aren't ready (ie. aren't consistently getting 30+ on the practice exams).

:luck:
 
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sewcurious

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My school just recently started using the committee letters and the differences are clear. Those without letters are getting much fewer interviews and acceptances than those who didn't.
 

FlunkTank

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My school just recently started using the committee letters and the differences are clear. Those without letters are getting much fewer interviews and acceptances than those who didn't.
:thumbup:, you're are hurting yourself without a committee letter if you have that option.
 

Dude Man Bro Man

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I just wanted to tack on my own question. Does a school committee letter ever expire? As in, if I need to reapply after graduating, can I still use the committee letter?
 
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has anyone ever had a committee letter interview? what kinds of things do they ask you about? how did you prepare?
 

LizzyM

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I just wanted to tack on my own question. Does a school committee letter ever expire? As in, if I need to reapply after graduating, can I still use the committee letter?
From what I've seen, if you need to reapply, some committees will write a fresh letter with an update of what you've done since the last letter was written.
 

eablackwell

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I took all my prereqs postbacc and that school has no committee. Do I still need to get a letter from my degree granting institution even though I can't get science letters from profs there?
 

LizzyM

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I took all my prereqs postbacc and that school has no committee. Do I still need to get a letter from my degree granting institution even though I can't get science letters from profs there?
don''t bother with a committee letter unless your postbacc school has a committee.
 

Dude Man Bro Man

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From what I've seen, if you need to reapply, some committees will write a fresh letter with an update of what you've done since the last letter was written.
My committee will do so, but they don't prioritize updates and won't guarantee a new letter until late August. Obviously, I'd like to have my applications done well before then. They even recommend foregoing an update and using an older letter, I just wanted to see what the opinion was on doing so. I figure I could use the older one originally one and send the updated letter as an update once it becomes available.
 

njbmd

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Hi,

I am an applicant for Fall 2011 admission and have a question about the committee letter.

It seems like most schools want applicants to have a cover letter from school committee. But my school has very stick deadline, for example, unless I take MCAT by the end of April, they would not allow to apply in this cycle through HPEC committee.

I am signed up for the MCAT on April 23rd, but I feel like I don't have enough time to reach the score I want by then. :scared: Unfortunately, I don't want to wait until next year to apply, either.

I can postpone my test day til May or early June then I have more time to prepare for MCAT and still can apply for this cycle, but in that case I would not get a letter from school committee.

My question is how important a committee letter is. Is it a requirement?
Would I look bad if I don't get one from school?

Should I choose a committee letter over MCAT score? (i know postponing exam by one or two months wouldn't guarantee that my score will be improved significantly, but at least I can be more prepared..)

I graduate May 2009 and doing a post bac program at NIH(working full time)

I talked people about this and they are giving me different advise, I am CONFUSED!!!

I need your advise, please help!!

Thank you
If your school has a committee and you are an enrolled undergraduate student there, bypassing the committee is going to be problematic. You are the one who has to meet the deadlines. Get your affairs in gear and get your MCAT done. You knew that you had to take the exam by a specific deadline so why did you wait until the last minute.

I can tell you that admission to medical school is a whole series of deadlines that you have to meet and exceed. If you don't meet them, then you suffer the consequences. In this case, I can tell you that if you applied to either of the two medical schools where I serve on the admissions committee, your application would not be considered without the committee letter since we know the schools that have premed committees. I am sure that my two schools are not the only ones with that policy.
 

LizzyM

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My committee will do so, but they don't prioritize updates and won't guarantee a new letter until late August. Obviously, I'd like to have my applications done well before then. They even recommend foregoing an update and using an older letter, I just wanted to see what the opinion was on doing so. I figure I could use the older one originally one and send the updated letter as an update once it becomes available.
Late August isn't too late for letters if everything else is in place. A late letter is better than the old letter which is better than no letter at all.

Unlike njbmd, my school will look at an applicant who is missing a committee letter but it is a red flag and we'll often pass on offering an interview if it appears that there might be some concern.