Your letters are like a jigsaw puzzle. When someone reads them all together, they should give a complete picture of who you are.
Letters are meant to provide details about any and all aspects of your candidacy, especially:
- your ability to navigate the rigorous professional school curriculum
- ways you will contribute to your class and school
- suitability for your chosen career.
If you're applying to medical or dental school with the HPA committee letter, you will request three to six letters of recommendation that will be sent to your schools with the committee letter. If you're applying to another health profession or are applying without the committee letter, research schools of interest to find out what they require.
This writer should be able to comment on your science and thinking/reasoning competencies, your readiness for the professional school science curriculum, and your engagement with classmates. They should address questions like, "What will this applicant contribute to the classroom learning community?" and "How has this applicant prepared themself for the rigors of the professional school science curriculum?"
- Professor or preceptor from a small biology (EEB/NEU/MOL) or chemistry seminar or a class with group work where you demonstrated your teamwork and communication skills.
- Professor for whom you served as an Undergrad Course Assistant / TA.
- Professor or preceptor who you worked with to improve your performance over the course of the term.
This writer should be able to comment on your science and thinking/reasoning competencies, and on your readiness for the professional school science curriculum.
- Thesis adviser or mentor for science majors
- Summer research supervisor
- Princeton or Postbac course instructor or TA
These writers should cover other important inter- and intrapersonal competencies, like communication skills, reliability, service orientation, cultural competence, and teamwork.
- Professors or preceptors
- Princeton supervisors for jobs or leadership positions (e.g., RCA, Peer Health Adviser, orientation leader).
- Internship or job supervisors