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Premedicine Major
Health Sciences
Pre-Professional Committee

Committee Interview and Letter Process COVID-19 Response

Beginning June 1 – the Health Preprofessional Evaluation Committee Letter process is being modified.

The supporting Committee Letter process is being transitioned beginning June 1st in the wake of all functions of the Science College going to remote worksites. We believe the change described below will enable members of our committee to provide applicants with feedback on their candidacy as well as expedite their suite of supporting letters more quickly to the professional schools.

We will continue to offer an opportunity to make a 1-hour appointment (mock interview) to discuss one’s candidacy with a committee member, to identify strengths and areas of potential improvement to make one’s best application for 2021 admission. The principal change is that a non-evaluative committee cover letter will accompany letter sets to the professional schools in lieu of a composite, post-interview committee letter as before. The letter will also summarize the spring 2020 alternate grade system for which schools will need to be informed. This supporting letter model is not new, and should not negatively affect your candidacy. For example, a non-evaluative letter model has been in use by health pre-professions offices at Yale, Dartmouth, Northwestern University and Tulane for some time. For our Committee’s role at Penn State, with the transition to remote worksites, this is an appropriate shift of time resources to best assist our 250+ applicants in their post-graduate health professions aspirations.

We will provide the opportunity to schedule an optional  mock interview to discuss an applicant’s preparation, address questions and provide guidance on this process. Declining a mock interview does NOT compromise the committee cover letter for applicants – it will still be uploaded to veCollect. We will also continue to provide guidance on primary and secondary applications as we always have. We encourage you to join our Applicant Networking Canvas page for more resources and faster responses to questions you may have.

Appointment slots will still be made via our main office staff:  814-865-7620.

 

 

The Health Sciences Pre-Professional Evaluation Committee is designed for undergraduate students at Penn State preparing for application to medical, dental, podiatry, and optometry schools.

The committee, composed of numerous faculty and advisors from various colleges within the University, assist in preparing a committee letter of evaluation in support of students applying to health profession schools. It is not required by Penn State that students use this committee, but many health professional schools require such a committee letter, and most students find the process helpful. 

Dr. Ronald A. Markle is the chair of the Health Sciences Pre-Professional Committee.  For additional information on the operation of this committee, download the packet with instructions and forms.

 

To obtain a mock interview to review your candidacy, you must complete the following:

1. Complete FERPA statement and pay for veCollect account (see link below). Our office will then create a veCollect account for you.

2. Collect 3 letters of evaluation (recommendation) within veCollect. 

3. Complete the Biosketch (or Re-Applicant Update form, if applicable) for your chosen professional program (see link below).

 

Note the following dates:

June 1, 2020: Mock interviews are now being held to examine candidacy.*

*Please see note above to see how this is different from previous cycles.

 

Mid-September 2020: Mock interviews conclude for the 2020-2021 application cycle.** 

**After mid-September, we will no longer accept update forms from re-applicants and delayed applicants. Please plan accordingly.

 

Consent for Release of Information and Payment for veCollect Account

To establish a veCollect account to store your letters of recommendation with us, you will need to pay a $50 processing fee and sign a FERPA statement allowing us to collect and release letters of recommendation for health professional programs. Returning applicants will need to pay this fee again, as it is associated with maintaining an active account each year.

Our office will create and activate your veCollect account once you have paid the fee and signed the FERPA statement. Please wait 1-7 days for your account to open. Please do not create a veCollect account by accessing the company's website directly. This will only result in a delay in establishing your account, as we will need to delete that account to establish an account associated with our office. 

Please note that the $50 processing fee is NON-REFUNDABLE. Even if you choose not to apply, or you choose to withdraw your application, refunds will not be offered.

You must sign a FERPA statement and pay the $50 fee in order to receive access to veCollect to begin collecting your letters of recommendation. Note: only VISA or Mastercard are accepted.

To sign the FERPA statement and pay online with a credit card, please follow this link. Please be sure to enter your name and the cardholder's name accurately, especially if you are using a credit card that does not match your name. This allows us to match your name to your payments and prevents delays.

Once your account has been created, you will receive an email with instructions on how to access your account and change your password. 

*Please also view the information below for important instructions on establishing and maintaining a veCollect account, collecting letters of evaluation, and obtaining a committee interview and letter. 

 


Instructions for Obtaining a Committee Letter, Letters of Evaluation, and veCollect

To view instructions on how to obtain a committee letter, letters of evaluation, and veCollect, please view the appropriate (First-Time Applicant, Re-Applicant or Delayed Applicant) document below. The guides will detail instructions for applicants planning to matriculate into a health professional program in 2021 (applying summer 2020). Please note: all veCollect accounts are deleted annually mid-November. Please only collect letters if you are planning to apply in the current cycle (2021 matriculation). 

 

Instructions for Re-Applicants/Delayed Applicants:

Reapplicants: Applicants that applied but received no offers.
Delayed Applicants: Applicants that withdrew their applications in a previous cycle.
Delayed Applicants: Applicants that interviewed with the committee but chose not to proceed with their application.

 

          Please view the instructions for Collecting Letters of Evaluation and Obtaining a Committee Letter:

            Committee Letter Re-Applicant Guide for 2021 Matriculation

         

           Please complete the Re-Applicant Update Form:

            http://sites.psu.edu/sciadvising/reapplicants/

 

 


Instructions for First-Time Applicants:

First Time Applicants: Applicants (including alumni) applying to professional school for the first time.

If you have previously applied, withdrawn a previous application, or have interviewed with the committee, but later decided not to apply, please view the reapplicant guide (above).

 

          Please view the instructions for Collecting Letters of Evaluation and Obtaining a Committee Letter:

          Committee Letter Guide for 2021 Matriculation

 

          Please complete the Biographical Sketch (Biosketch) for your intended health profession:

          Medical and Podiatry: http://sites.psu.edu/sciadvising/biographical-sketch-medical/

          Dental: http://sites.psu.edu/sciadvising/biographical-sketch-dental/

          Optometry: http://sites.psu.edu/sciadvising/biographical-sketch-optometry/

 

**If you have questions or concerns while working through your application materials, please email prehealthadvising@psu.edu for help. Please look for the answers within the Committee Letter Guide before emailing. If your answer cannot be addressed there, we will be happy to help guide you.

 


 

Evaluators

Thank you for supporting our Penn State candidates for medical/dental/optometry/podiatry programs. Please refer to this guide for more information and instructions on how to use veCollect.

Updated: 03/23/2020