Health Committee Letter
Most health professions schools require letters of recommendation as part of their application process. For students applying to medical, dental or veterinary school, the Career Center prepares a special recommendation letter, known as the Health Committee (HC) letter, for eligible individuals.
Rochester’s Health Committee Letter
At the University of Rochester, the HC Letter is a confidential letter of recommendation (LOR) from the Gwen M. Greene Center for Career Education and Connections. For the 2019 application cycle, it will be considered an individual COMMITTEE LETTER which includes a cover letter describing the UR curriculum, plus a letter evaluating the applicant. This is NOT a packet and does not include additional LORs. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ask for and collect additional LORs from a variety of sources. Check with the schools to which you are applying to determine their specific requirements for their LORs.
The committee letter is based on the applicant’s submitted Health Professions Questionnaire (HPQ), his or her interactions and interview with a Career Advisor, and the academic record. This letter will mention activities both inside and outside of the classroom, as well as an applicant’s motivation to pursue their intended field. The Health Committee Letter serves to bring context to the applicant’s background, describe his/her demonstration of pre-professional school competencies, and give professional programs a holistic representation of the candidate.
In order to receive a Health Committee Letter, there are several requirements and deadlines students must meet.
Health Committee Letter Timeline
1. Meet Eligibility Requirements:
In order to be eligible for a health committee letter for the 2018 application cycle (for 2019 matriculation), you must meet the following requirements:
- Be a current University of Rochester undergraduate student, or have graduated from the U of R in 2016 or after*. Note: students who have completed, or are in the process of completing a post-baccalaureate program, graduate program, or significant coursework at another academic institution, are not eligible for a committee letter. If you have questions regarding your eligibility, please schedule an appointment with a Career Advisor through Handshake.
- If you are requesting an update to a previous health committee letter request, and meet all other eligibility requirements, you are expected to complete all steps as described below. PLEASE NOTE:Students are only eligible for a maximum of one updated letter.
- Be in good standing with the University, including matters related to academic performance, academic honesty and student conduct. Students must complete and upload to their HPQ:
- There is NO minimum GPA requirement.
- Apply to ONE of the following types of programs: Medical (M.D. and/or D.O), Dental or Vet.
- Subscribe to Interfolio, open a Dossier account and create a CONFIDENTIAL recommendation request. Caterina Caiazza (firstname.lastname@example.org) should be listed as the recommendation writer, and the documentation request should be saved as a PDF and uploaded to your HPQ.
- If at any point during you determine that you are no longer applying for professional school this cycle, you must notify the Career Center at email@example.com.
2. Fill Out Health Professions Questionnaire
The Health Professions Questionnaire is an online form that prepares students for their professional school applications. In addition to it providing guided self-reflection, it is also one of the requirements for students to complete as part of their Health Committee Letter request. Information submitted in the HPQ will be used in the advising process, as well as within a student's Health Committee Letter.
- Submit a Health Professions Questionnaire (HPQ) by NOON (12:00 PM) EST on Saturday, February 3rd, 2018, including:
- Photo of student (260 X 260 pixels).
- One-page resume (see Greene Center resources).
- Confidential Interfolio letter request as a pdf attachment.
- The Release of Records of Board on Academic Honesty Waiver.
- The Student Conduct History Waiver.
- By clicking submit to the HPQ, you agree to the terms stated in the Health Committee Letter Agreement form.
- Students can access the HPQ by clicking here. The HPQ in NOW OPEN!!!
3. MCAT Score Submission & AAMC ID Number
- Please notify us of your MCAT score no later then June 26th. This means that the last date to sit for the exam would be on May 24th, 2018.
- If you take the MCAT AFTER May 24th, please know that your HCL will not be guaranteed by August 15th, 2018.
- Upload your score and ID onto the HPQ once received. This can be done AFTER submission of the HPQ which is due Feb. 3rd.
4. Schedule an interview with a Career Adviser
Interviews will take place during the month of February 2018. You can schedule your interview online through Handshake, by selecting the "HPQ Interview" appointment type. If you have any trouble accessing Handshake, please contact the Career Center at (585) 275-2366 to schedule your HPQ Interview.
- The interviews will be 45 minutes and will take place in the Career Center, 4-200 Dewey Hall. If you are not local, please request the phone/video appointment medium.
- The interview will ask a series of questions to understand you as an applicant and your motivation towards the program to which you are applying. Click here for interview resources.
- Treat this as a professional interview. You don't have to wear a suit but you can if you would like. Sweatpants and very casual wear is discouraged.
- This is your opportunity to assist us in writing a letter to advocate for YOU! Please keep this in mind when preparing for your interview with us.
5. Personal Statements
- We recommend you upload a DRAFT of your personal statement to the HPQ by February 3rd.
- We will not be evaluating your personal statement to write your HCL however writing it early will assist you in being an on-time applicant. Please familiarize yourself with the personal statement character limits of your relevant application service (i.e. AMCAS, AACOMAS, AADSAS or VMCAS) as you prepare your draft.
- We will be holding personal statement workshops throughout the Spring semester. Please check Handshake for dates and times.
6. HCL Submission
- Your HCL will be written and uploaded to interfolio no later than August 15, 2018.
- You do NOT need this letter to apply on-time. You may submit your application prior to August 15th and then submit this HCL letter as soon as you are notified by Interfolio that it has been uploaded.
- When entering the letter information into your relevant application service, please include the following information:
- Letter Type and Title: Committee Letter
- School: University of Rochester
- Primary Contact:
- Name: Caterina M. Caiazza, Director, Career Curriculum Initiatives
- Adress: Gwen M. Greene Center for Career Education and Connections, University of Rochester, 4-200 Dewey Hall, Box 270028, Rochester, NY 14627
- Phone: (585) 275-2366
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org