StritchMD2011

Member
10+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Sep 28, 2002
475
2
Status
Medical Student
I've done paid research in the same lab for two summers, and I voluntered during the school year about 5 hours a week. I'd like to ask the PI for a LOR, but I've heard a few horror stories about him writing individuals very mediocre and even poor LORs. I've never given him a reason to not like me, and I feel like I've been a hard-worker - but he's the type of guy who seems impossible to impress. I'm not sure I'd trust him to write me a strong letter...

My question is, would it be appropriate to ask the post-doc who I have worked very closely with for the last two summers for a LOR? I'm sure he'd write me a great one, and I've actually had much more interaction with him than with the lab's PI. He's not tenured, but has done research at the medical center for over 4 years now.

I think it would look bad if I didn't get some sort of LOR from my research, and I'm torn on what to do. Please help!
 

CTtarheel

Senior Member
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Feb 23, 2006
775
2
Status
Medical Student
It's not going to count as a faculty letter anyway since the research wasn't for credit and you didn't get a grade in the class, so i'd go ahead and have the person who you feel could write the best letter write it. Since the post-doc is a phd also it should still carry some weight.
 

BozoSparky

10+ Year Member
Mar 13, 2006
469
6
Status
Attending Physician
BKadow said:
I've done paid research in the same lab for two summers, and I voluntered during the school year about 5 hours a week. I'd like to ask the PI for a LOR, but I've heard a few horror stories about him writing individuals very mediocre and even poor LORs. I've never given him a reason to not like me, and I feel like I've been a hard-worker - but he's the type of guy who seems impossible to impress. I'm not sure I'd trust him to write me a strong letter...

My question is, would it be appropriate to ask the post-doc who I have worked very closely with for the last two summers for a LOR? I'm sure he'd write me a great one, and I've actually had much more interaction with him than with the lab's PI. He's not tenured, but has done research at the medical center for over 4 years now.

I think it would look bad if I didn't get some sort of LOR from my research, and I'm torn on what to do. Please help!
people have actually read their own LOR to verify this? weird! maybe it's just a myth...

hey, ask the opinion of a grad student in the lab...preferably one who's cool with you and won't rat you out.

if you have to, ask the post doc. but a faculty member would be preferable.
 
About the Ads

Dr Durden

10+ Year Member
Jun 15, 2006
4,259
1
The Dirty South
Status
Medical Student
You are right, not getting a letter from that lab might raise a few adcom eyebrows. Yet time and time again, I've heard that these committees would also much rather hear from your PI. A possible solution, however, would be to get the postdoc to write you a letter and have the PI sign it. You could justify this to your PI by saying that this postdoc has more closely observed your work in the lab and would be in a better position to comment on your strengths (and any weaknesses).
 

Astrithir

Member
10+ Year Member
Jul 9, 2006
95
0
Status
I agree. Get it co-signed. The slight decrease in "oomph" is more than made up for by a personal, highly positive, and well-written letter.
 

jackieMD2007

***MVI***
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Apr 23, 2006
2,510
4
The Hospital
Status
Resident [Any Field]
Astrithir said:
I agree. Get it co-signed. The slight decrease in "oomph" is more than made up for by a personal, highly positive, and well-written letter.
Yes. Get it co-signed. Definitely have the letter, but have the post-doc who knows you well and is a supporter write it. You never know, maybe the PI will add in some great stuff. :)
 
OP
StritchMD2011

StritchMD2011

Member
10+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Sep 28, 2002
475
2
Status
Medical Student
jackieMD2007 said:
Yes. Get it co-signed. Definitely have the letter, but have the post-doc who knows you well and is a supporter write it. You never know, maybe the PI will add in some great stuff. :)
I think I'll look into this. The only problem is that the post-doc's first language isn't English. He speaks english very well, but he commonly misspells things and uses odd word choices. I think I have the type of relationship with him, however, that I could ask him to have someone else in the lab proofread it.

The only thing I'm worried about is that my PI might resent the fact that I didn't directly ask him for a LOR, which would make it difficult to get it co-signed.
 

coralfangs

Senior Member
10+ Year Member
Apr 3, 2006
1,080
0
Status
ask him directly whether he would write u a strong one

profs wont lie about that


added: obviously u have to ask nicely
 
About the Ads