Sweatshop FP in Ontario
7+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Nov 19, 2001
The inner-net
Visit site
Hey all,

I am new to the DO world. Recently, I became enlightened about the DO profession, and am very interested in applying to DO schools for 2003 entry.

I have a few questions from the perspective of a newbie:

1) Time-wise, do you think I will be ok submitting my AACOMAS in the next 2-3 weeks? I am a competitive applicant (4.0, 27S MCAT, standout EC's, perfect committee letter and hospital work experience), would this help me at all in terms of getting secondaries/interviews if apply that late in the game?

2) For the DO letter of rec: should it be a document the physician writes then hands over to me until schools request it? Or is it confidential, and must be sent from directly from DO to schools?

3) Is it too risky (even as a strong applicant) to apply to schools without a DO letter? Would Adcoms be convinced of my motivation to be a physician and incorporate what I know about the DO profession, despite not having worked with a Primary care DO? I have shadowed DO's in the Emergency department but they were no different from MD's in that capacity. I'm interested in public health and FP- I would hope that my academic experience and hospital work is enough to convince schools about my motivation? Am I wrong?

Thank you all in advance!:)


Go A's!
7+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Sep 27, 2002
Visit site
1. Time wise you are not too late if you submit ASAP. Don't wait 2-3 more weeks, apply tonight over the internet.

2. All letters must come directly from the author or from the college. They do not have to be confidential but most ad coms expect that you don't know what is in them and it is considered bad form to bring up the references of what is in your LOR's during an interview. So NO do not keep the letters.

3. It is not too risky to not have a DO letter, some school (a few) are still requiring them. Many schools have realized that there aren't as many DO's out there in some states and that it is near impossible to get one. For instance, I have only one DO in my town and he happens to be the best cardiologist around. Needless to say, getting 5 minutes with him would require having chest pain, SOB, etc. I submitted a letter from an MD to TUCOM and I got accepted there. My letter from the MD was amazing and made me sound like superwoman so that probably helped. In addition, she really knew me well and it showed in the letter. The key is that the MD knows that you want to apply to the osteopathic schools and that they SUPPORT your decision to attend an osteopathic school.

You will find that the criteria for DO school admissions is slightly different than MD schools. They look at the gpa and MCAT but what they really want to see is that you have a strong desire to be a DO and if you can demostrate that you have a sincere interest in FP, that helps a lot as well. Sometime applicants only apply to DO schools as a last resort and don't really want to be an osteopathic doctor, if the adcoms sense this in you then they won't accept you.

From the sounds of it, you really are making a choice to go to an osteopathic school so I don't think that you will have any problems getting in. Goodluck and like I said early, don't wait 2-3 weeks on the application!! Do it now!!

TUCOM 2007


Membership Revoked
10+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Feb 4, 2000
Resident [Any Field]

First of all, good luck in your pursuit of osteopathic medicine!

The last poster summed things up pretty nicely.

I would suggest doing whatever you can to get a letter from a DO, preferrably one that knows you or that you have spent some time talking to.

It is not necessary for all DO schools, but some do require a letter from a DO...and it can't hurt at the other schools.

Best of luck and feel free to PM with any Q's.


Senior Member
7+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Jun 6, 2002
New Jersey
Visit site
Just wanted to add my experience here for the original poster-

I also decided to pursue DO after I had already gathered all of my letters of rec. I had worked with MDs and had an MD letter in my file. I submitted the aacomas in july and got an interview at UMDNJ-SOM 9/20. I was accepted to UMDNJ 10/17- all of this without a DO letter. As long as you know what you're talking about with osteopathy, you can make up for a DO letter for schools that don't require one.