Overview: Committee Letter
The Committee Letter is an institutional letter that highlights you as a multidimensional applicant. It ties together your academic record and scholarly accomplishments, personal attributes, experiences working and volunteering in the community, and your demonstrated commitment to healthcare. The letter will tell your story of why you selected this professional path and serves to introduce you – holistically – to all members of Admissions Committees.
Many health professional schools recommend that students obtain an institutional letter (e.g. Committee Letter) if the service is available at his/her institution; however, some centralized application services and professional programs do not accept traditional NYU Committee Letters. If you plan to apply to Pharmacy, Physician Assistant, Public Health, or Veterinary programs, Special Master's Programs (SMPs), or postbacc programs, we ask that you email email@example.com to confirm that the Committee process is compatible with your goal before proceeding with the Committee process. Even if you do not need to use the Committee process, or ask for our letter, we are still excited to meet with you as you consider your potential career, assess your application readiness, and apply to your chosen health profession.
Eligibility to Receive a Committee Letter at NYU
All students who meet all of the following criteria are eligible to receive the services offered by the Prehealth Committee for a particular application cycle:
- You must have completed more than half of your prehealth science courses at NYU within the past seven (7) years while enrolled as a degree-seeking undergraduate or as a certficate recipient in our Postbaccalaureate Prehealth Studies Program
- You must be applying to an application service or school that is compatible with the committee process and
- You must have adhered to our office’s internal deadlines for that cycle.
Our committee will only evaluate your performance in courses completed at NYU. If you complete a SMP or postbacc program after completing your basic prehealth coursework at NYU, we strongly recommend requesting a committee letter from the institution where you most recently completed coursework, if you are eligible.
NYU students and recent graduates who DO NOT receive a Committee Letter for programs that expect one may lead admissions committee to assume that they are circumventing the process or that they did not follow our protocols. Avoid this negative insinuation by adhering to our prescribed deadlines. If four or more years have elapsed since graduation, the Committee Letter is not expected as the focus of the letter will be on your undergraduate accomplishments, not your most recent and relevant accomplishments. We are happy to meet with you to discuss if the Committee Letter is still right for you.
Applying to Receive a Committee Letter
Students and alumni seeking a Committee Letter work closely with the staff of the Preprofessional Advising Center throughout the academic year preceding their summer application to health professional schools. The steps that NYU applicants complete to receive a Committee Letter is popularly referred to as the "Committee Process":
- Completion of a Prehealth Committee Application.
- Participation in a Committee Portfolio Review
- Solicitation of individual letters of evaluation
- Submission of a primary application to schools of the health professions with our letter properly documented
- Completion of your Committee Letter Request
- Discussion of each applicant by members of the Committee
A review of these materials and interactions allows us to write a personalized, thorough, and reliable Committee Letter to accompany your application to health professional schools.
The Prehealth Committee Application is an internal application completed by all NYU students and alumni seeking a Committee Letter. Your submission of an Application alerts our staff of your intention to use the services of the Committee and participate in our portfolio review process. The Application provides Committee members with important information about you and your candidacy. Its structure and content has also been purposefully designed to look and feel like your professional school application.
The Prehealth Committee Application serves multiple purposes. Certain elements are designed to help the Committee accurately anticipate the number and variety of prehealth students who wish to participate in our Portfolio Review process and receive a letter this summer. Understanding the volume of students we will be serving allows us to efficiently manage applicants’ needs in the months ahead. Additionally, parts of the application reveal your intentions and readiness to participate in the Committee process. We expect you to reflect and answer honestly when responding to these question. Members of our Committee may be in touch if we have questions or concerns related to your responses.
Finally, the essays, short answer questions, and professional preparation sections of the Application helps the Committee learn about you as a candidate. Your responses to these questions and prompts allows you to take stock of your experiences and attributes, practice good communication skills, and prepare the narrative you plan to present with your summer application to health professional schools.
Committee Portfolio Review
The Committee Portfolio Review provides you the opportunity to discuss your portfolio with a member of the Prehealth Committee. This one-on-one, 30-60 minute meeting may feel like a guided conversation where you’re able to share your personal/familial background, educational choices, professional goals, and the experiences that have informed your understanding of the health profession that you seek to enter. The Committee member will also be observing your communication style, interpersonal skills, maturity, and professionalism during this encounter and may ask you pointed questions related to your preprofessional preparation and how you demonstrate the competencies that professional schools value. Examples of professional school competencies can be found online:
This Portfolio review is an advising session, where you will recieve feedback and be able to ask questions, but we will ask that you treat the appointment with the seriousness of an interview. Please plan to arrive 10 minutes early to your Portfolio Review site, dressed professionally, and prepared to engage in a meaningful conversation. Missing or arriving late to your scheduled portfolio review will result in the forfeiture of your portfolio review. Candidates who previously interviewed with the Committee do not need to attend a portfolio review. We strongly recommend students engage in this review process in the year they are ready to apply to schools of the health professions. Prior to that year, we encourage you to schedule regular advising meetings to discuss the development of your portfolio.
Committee Portfolio Scheduling
Applicants who adhere to the Committee’s application deadline will be invited to schedule a one-hour Portfolio Review. For applicants submitting at the deadline, Portfolio Reivews will be scheduled during a short window in February to be conducted from February through late May. Applicants who submit Part II of their application early - in December or in early January - may be invited in for an earlier review.
Incorporating your Letters of Evaluation
Individual letters of evaluation are important and essential components of your final Committee Letter. All evaluations in your prehealth file are submitted, unabridged, with your NYU Committee Letter. For this reason, you should not separately list individual evaluation writers who submitted letter(s) to the Preprofessional Advising Center in your primary application to professional schools.
Your Committee Letter can only be finalized once all anticipated letters of evaluation have been received. Waiting for the submission of a missing letter may delay the submission of your Committee Letter. It may be more effective to have the individual writer send it directly to AMCAS (for example) through its letters service, or directly to health professional schools, whenever s/he finishes it.
Read more about Letters of Evaluation
Information for Previously-Interviewed Applicants
If you have already participated in a Committee Interview with our office but chose to delay your application to professional programs, please know that you do not need to complete a new Prehealth Committee Application or have a second committee interview or structured Portfolio Review. In lieu of submitting a new application, we ask that you provide updates to the Committee at the time you request your new Committee Letter. You will be asked to provide the following updates:
- Updated grades in BCPM courses
- Updated unofficial transcript
- Applicant Update Essay
If you plan to submit applications to health professional programs in Summer 2023 and have previously completed a Committee Interview, you will be able to submit a request to release your Committee Letter from June 1, 2023 to August 1, 2023.
NOTE: Re-applicants are asked to adhere to the instructions on the re-applicants page.
Documenting your Committee Letter within Centralized Application Services
Centralized application services expect applicants to properly identify the source of their institutional Committee Letter. Please follow the directions below to ensure the accuracy of this letter entry:
- Select "Committee Letter" as your Letter Type
- Select "Electronic Evaluation" for any centralized application that requests this information
- Primary Author: for undergraduate students and undergraduate alumni - Dr. Kristy Lamb, Assistant Dean for Preprofessional Advising; for postbaccs and postbacc alumni - Ms. Jenn Cunha, Postbacc Program Director
- Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
New York University
Preprofessional Advising Center
726 Broadway, 7th Floor
New York, NY 10003
- Phone number: (212) 998-8160
DO NOT include the names of the writers who submitted individual letters of evaluation to the Preprofessional Advising Center in your primary application. All evaluations in your prehealth file are submitted, unabridged, with your NYU Committee Letter of Evaluation. Noting the names of each evaluation writer separately in your application will give admissions personnel the false impression that these letters will arrive separately, delaying evaluation of your application.
Submitting Your Committee Letter to Health Professional Programs
All students who adhere to the Preprofessional Advising Center’s published deadlines may request to have their Committee Letter and individual evaluations sent to the centralized application services and/or health professional programs to which they apply. We cannot move forward with discussing and preparing your Committee Letter, and we cannot send these documents to programs and centralized application services, until all of your individual letters of evaluation have been received. The Preprofessional Advising Center will only send materials that match the current offering of the Committee and have been updated for the current cycle; we do not simply re-upload packets or letters generated in previous years. Expect a 4-6 week turnaround each application cycle.
- The Committee will not finalize or submit Committee Letters before your centralized application has been submitted. In most cases, centralized applications cannot be submitted prior to June 1. Even in instances where you can submit your centralized application prior to June 1, we will not accept requests for Committee Letter before June 1.
- Please allow four (4) to six (6) weeks for the Committee Letter to be uploaded to the relevant online centralized application service (e.g., AMCAS, AACOMAS, or AADSAS) or the programs to which you applied. The four week processing period does not include university closures and holidays. Our timeline will in no way negatively impact your application. It takes four to six weeks for your application to be verified by the online application services.
- Our staff will send your Committee Letter and associated evaluations electronically, whenever possible, to expedite the transmission of these documents.
- You (the applicant) are responsible for meeting the deadlines of professional schools and ensuring that your file is complete at each of them. Schools do not consider your application complete until you have submitted secondary applications.
Submitting Your Committee Letter
For Summer 2023 Applicants - Fall 2024 Matriculants
Eligible applicants can request a Committee Letter through SurveyMonkey Apply starting Thursday, June 1, 2023 through Tuesday, August 1, 2023.
For each application service you would like us to send a letter to, you will need to provide any unique identifiers assigned to you by the application service. For AMCAS, this will be your AMCAS ID, Letter ID, and the Letter Request form. For AACOMAS, AADSAS, TMDSAS, and OptomCAS, we will need the Application ID number. For applications that require us to transmit the letters outside of a dedicated portal, we will need more detailed information on where to send the packet.
If you are applying to SMPs for Fall 2023 matriculation, please email email@example.com to submit your request.
If you want to matriculate in Fall 2024 but were not eligible for a Committee Letter, please review the section below for instructions on requesting a letter packet.
Using NYU's Dossier Service/ Requesting a Letter Packet
NYU applicants who are ineligible for a Committee Letter may be authorized to use the Preprofessional Advising Center's dossier service. This service - the packaging of individual evaluations under the cover of the Preprofessional Advising Center - facilitates the submission of a "letter packet"without an adjoining evaluative Committee Letter. Applicants must request and be granted express permission by the Chair of the Committee on Evaluations to use the dossier service. To request permission, write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please contact email@example.com with any questions related to the submission of your Committee Letter or letter packet.
*Once your Committee Letter and associated evaluations or letter packet have been submitted to centralized application service(s), our staff will not transmit any additional evaluations sent on your behalf to the Preprofessional Advising Center. It is your responsibility to re-direct all evaluation writers to the appropriate evaluation transmission service (AMCAS, AACOMAS, AADSAS, etc.) associated with your application to facilitate the transmission of their evaluation directly.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I request letters of evaluation?
Please request letters of evaluation via SurveyMonkey Apply. This will allow your writer to upload their letter directly to your application. This becomes available once you submit Part II of the Committee Application.
How do I know if my letter writer submitted their letter to SurveyMonkey Apply?
You will see a green check mark and "received" next to the request.
My letter writer can't submit their letter in SurveyMonkey Apply or didn't receive the request email. What should I do?
If your letter writer is experiencing difficulty, they may email their letter as an attachment to firstname.lastname@example.org.
When is the deadline to submit letters of evaluation?
We recommend having all letters submitted to our office by May 15th, but will continue to accept letters beyond this date. All letters must be submitted prior to requesting your Committee Letter.
Can letters be removed from my prehealth file or excluded from my Committee Letter packet?
No, once a letter has been received by our office, it becomes part of your prehealth student file and may not be removed or excluded. Note that we do not retain letters after seven years.
Can I request updated letters of evaluation from writers I have continued to work with?
Yes. Updated letters should be sent via email to email@example.com.
When can I request my Committee Letter?
Applicants may begin requesting Committee Letters on June 1, 2023.
How do I request my Committee Letter?
Committee Letters will be requested in SurveyMonkey Apply. Please keep an eye on the Medical Record and the prehealth website for instructions.
I interviewed in a previous cycle. How do I access my old application?
You will click "Prehealth Committee Application for Fall 23 Matriculation (and Prior)" in SurveyMonkey Apply. If you interviewed prior to SurveyMonkey Apply, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. As it was more than four years ago, we would strongly recommend submitting individual letters of evaluation that are more recent and relevant than our letter that focuses on your undergraduate years.
I interviewed in a previous cycle. How do I submit updates?
You will submit updates in the Committe Letter request process.