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Pre-med committee sent an osteopathic LOR to 3 allopathic schools

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by MedSchoolFool, Aug 9, 2006.

  1. MedSchoolFool

    MedSchoolFool Shake Zula
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    OK....Like many others, I am applying to both allopathic & osteopathic schools in my region. Well, most osteopathic schools pretty much require a LOR from a DO physician. My primary care doctor is a DO, so I had no problem getting her to send an LOR to my schools premed committee for me.

    The trouble is that I just found out that the secretary sent the DO LOR to 3 allopathic schools. :eek: (Sent to Temple, UPenn, and Virginia Commonwealth). This wouldn't be such a big deal if it weren't for the fact that the DO letter explicitly states how I am such an ideal candidate for osteopathic medicine. I think it actually mentions the word osteopathic 3 times in the course of the letter. The whole mix up is actually kind of funny in a really embarrassing way. :rolleyes:

    I am extremely fortunate to have recieved my committee's highest recommendaton. At the most, only 15% of interviewees recieve this level of recommendation from my school, so it is a huge positive for my med school application. So my question to everyone is this:

    How should I handle this? Do I call the 3 schools and explain to them about the mistake before they recieve the LOR's? Do I try and persuade the secretary at my school to do this for me, since she is the one who actually made the mistake? (which, by the way, I feel very disappointed that she hasn't already offered to do this. She is really a sweet person) What do I do?

    I think that no matter how I look at it, whatever damage will be done has been done. Can't stop those letters from getting there now. But I am wondering if my strong recommendation from the committee, along with strong letters from volunteer and work personnel, will be able to get the schools to look past this faux paus. What does everyone think? I'd really like some advice.

    MSF
     
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  3. Haemulon

    Haemulon Slippery When Wet
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    Oh dude. :laugh: That so sucks! No idea what to tell you.
     
  4. Depakote

    Depakote Pediatric Anesthesiologist
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    Well, you're right. The letter is sent, the damage is done.

    So, I wouldn't stress over it. They're going to see a positive letter on your behalf... and if a DO thinks you'll be a good DO, that's just a strong testiment to your character.

    But I wouldn't try to un-ring the bell, that's just going to make a bigger mess and put you in a worse situation than this actually is.
     
  5. Looque

    Looque Bob Loblaw
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    I think the mistake occurred when you had the osteopathic physician send his letter to your pre-med committee, rather than directly to the schools to which you're applying. Whatever you send to a committee should be expected to be compiled and disseminated to the schools to which you're applying. Any variation of that would require some pretty explicit directions from you, and something about which I would have certainly reminded the committee before having them send their letters.

    That said, I would probably write a letter explaining the situation and mail it to each allopathic school that received the DO letter. I'd go snail mail rather than email. Be sure to include your AMCAS ID# at the top of your letter if you do this.
     
  6. Captain Fantastic

    Physician 10+ Year Member

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    Your science letters stress how well you grasp science. Adcoms aren't stupid and of course they expect a DO letter to stress your fit for that philosophy. I'm not sure what the problem is.

    Trying to screw with the secretary or retract a great LOR would make you look pretty immature and is a lot more likely to hurt you.
     
  7. Depakote

    Depakote Pediatric Anesthesiologist
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    Don't forget, this can't be the first time this has happened...

    you might get the...

    "So, are you applying to any osteopathic schools?"

    question in an interview, in which case you should be able to answer it... but MD schools understand students apply to both, they don't have a problem with it.
     
  8. Haemulon

    Haemulon Slippery When Wet
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    Also be able to answer why you applying to Allopathic if it is the osteopthic philosophy that you are attracted to and so well suited for.
     
  9. notdeadyet

    notdeadyet Still in California
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    I'd advise against this. Have your LOR writers send it to a service like Interfolio, where you and you alone have control over who gets sent what.

    That said, OP, it's an embarassing situation, but not a very harmful one. The most damage that you'll take is if you react inappropriately by trying to undo what's been done too vehemently. Just roll with it.
     
  10. MedSchoolFool

    MedSchoolFool Shake Zula
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    Thanks for all the quick replies on this.

    It was discussed with the secretary prior to the DO letter coming in that it should only be mailed to the schools I would request for it to go to. Thus, since I had made no request to mail it yet, it shouldn't have been mailed. But to her credit, she has been an awesome resource during the last 3 years of my undergrad. She has gone out of her way to help me many times in the past. Also, I understand how things can get confusing when you are sending out 30 or 40 secondary LOR materials for many different students every day. At least, I'm assuming she has a lot of these things to handle, given that there were over 150 students evaluated by the health career committee this year. Anyway...the point is, we had verbally communicated about how the DO letter was to be handled, and it ended up not being handled that way. This isn't the first or last time things will not go as planned.

    I agree that I should be careful not to over react. I don't want to make an enemy of the secretary, yet I don't understand why she wouldn't attempt to do something about this on my behalf. Think about it...I spent $30 for each school to recieve the primary...shelled out $230 for the secondary fees...and spent a lot of time answering those d*** essays. (Thank goodness UPenn had no essay) This is a mistake that is costing me $320 and about a days worth of creative energy. The creative energy loss I can easily forgive...the $320 is a lilttle harder to over look.

    Like I said earlier, it really does make me laugh because it is such a funny mixup. I don't feel responsible, because I did everything I thought was reasonable to make sure this didn't happen. I can't really be angry at the secretary because she has been pulling for me from day 1. It's an honest mistake.

    At this moment I think that the best course of action is to call and/or write to the 3 schools and explain to them in a calm manner about the mix up. It can't hurt to do this as long as I maintain my composure and don't sound all offended and discombobulated over it. I'll let everyone know how it goes.

    In the meantime....let this be a lesson to others to double and triple check there is no mix up between DO and MD secondary materials. I'm glad that I at least found out about the mix up before it was sent to any more allopathic colleges.

    MSF
     

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