EIGHT evaluations/LORs?!?!?

Received the secondary from Minnesota/Twin Cities today:


If your undergraduate school DOES NOT have a structured premedical committee, your are required to provide FOUR letters of recommendations, as well as FOUR University of Minnesota recommendation forms.

“4 as well as 4…”

4 + 4.

4 + 4 = 8.

Well, as Bill Cosby once said while playing the character of Noah:



I resisted the urge to write back asking if I could just build them an ark instead.

Boeing, those 4 letters are supposed to come from the same people who fill out the 4 forms. I’m pretty sure that’s right. Also, you just type in the names and email addresses of those 4 people, and the U of M will email them a request to fill out the form electronically.
Yes, I know this method of requesting LOR’s is bizarre. Do they not get enough paperwork over at the U of M? (By the way, I thought you weren’t applying there…)
But seriously, you haven’t seen anything yet. I just sent off a special form to my advisor where he has to condense the existing 6-page letter he wrote for me into 3/4 of a page, then print it on a special form on British-sized paper with altered margins. Then he has to peel the backing off this form and paste the letter into my application. I had to send him a set of special instructions just on how to reconfigure his printer to do this. There is only one copy of the form, so if it goes through the printer wrong, that’s that! I sent him some practice pages, since I happen to have British sized paper in my stationary collection–but it was velum, stuff that’s usually reserved for wedding invitations and such. Ha ha! This really is going too far.
Like I’m sure these people who are writing our letters have nothing better to do. Applying to med school is just forms galore.

It was a little unclear - but they did mention some specific requirements for letter writers vs. evaluation form submitters so I don’t think that it was a request for 4 people x 2 pieces of paper, but rather 4 people + 4 people…
Either way…actually, originally I hadn’t planned on applying there, but went ahead and did when I realized that I’m going to go back to school and take Biochemistry in the spring.

Boeing, you should call them. They have a really nice staff who will answer any question. I talked to them about my application, and from the conversation I am pretty sure you don’t have to request those forms from different people than the ones who are writing your letters. I don’t have the application in front of me, but I think the “difference” they’re talking about is that the form asks different questions than those that might typically be addressed in a letter. Have you seen the form? It’s got a bunch of boxes they check off, I think. Also, on the online status page, each recommender’s name is listed, followed by 2 checkoffs: letter and form. So I think they’re the same people submitting those both.

I wish this was funnier or at least less serious-sounding, but I’ll just be procrastinating if I don’t just blast this out…

Feel free to confirm this with the admissions staff, but UMN is not asking for evaluations from eight different people. For each LOR that you submit, please have the letter writer complete a Minnesota evaluation form to accompany it.

I was uncomfortable asking each of my letter writers to complete this form, but they were all most gracious. Since it was electronic, it wasn’t much trouble for most of them.


Susan - Minneapolis/Chicago

MS2 (and an admissions guide)

University of Minnesota Medical School - Twin Cities