Letters of recommendation are individualized assessments of you and your work by people who are in a position to know. Choose carefully the people you ask to write letters as these letters carry a lot of weight with residency programs.
Students must have three or four letters of recommendation from faculty members familiar with their work. Students should check the websites of the programs they are interested in to see how many letters are needed.
We recommend you download the form from the Electronic Residency Application Service, https://www.aamc.org/data/facts/erasmdphd/, waiving your right to see letters of recommendation. Residency programs give greater credibility to a letter written by someone who knows it won’t be read by the person it’s being written for.
You may pick up envelopes from the Office of Student Affairs to give to the letter writer. That way, the letter of recommendation can be mailed directly to the Office of Student Affairs and we can help you keep track of what’s been submitted and what you still need to get.
Some specialties require a departmental letter, known as the Chair’s Letter. If that’s the case, you should schedule an appointment with the chair during the summer before your residency applications are due. Be sure to bring a copy of your curriculum vitae and a personal statement to the interview.