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Hi,

 

I will start my clinical clerkship soon. My question for you is regarding the moment when I should ask for a reference letter. Does it have to be at the end of the rotation or rather at the start of the Carms season?

Thanks

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I always asked for feedback mid rotation or a couple of days in and said something wonderful like "we've been working with eachother for a couple of days now. I'm really interested in this specialty and was wondering if you had any feedback on my performance and about what I can do better moving forward" this puts the thought in their mind.

At the end of my time with them, I would ask for a letter to see if they will sat yes or not. If not, then oooo poopy. if they say yes, then I would just something like "AMAZEBALLS" or "WOWZY" followed by "thank you so much, do you prefer that I reach out to you closer to when CaRMS is due or would you rather I get things together now for an early letter?" if they say later (most did) I would send them my CV, list of interesting cases we had together and how much of a MOFO BOSS I was and stuff I learned while working with them. 

This method worked out pretty well for me, others may have done things differently though...

 

GOOD LUCK  

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7 minutes ago, skyuppercutt said:

I always asked for feedback mid rotation or a couple of days in and said something wonderful like "we've been working with eachother for a couple of days now. I'm really interested in this specialty and was wondering if you had any feedback on my performance and about what I can do better moving forward" this puts the thought in their mind.

At the end of my time with them, I would ask for a letter to see if they will sat yes or not. If not, then oooo poopy. if they say yes, then I would just something like "AMAZEBALLS" or "WOWZY" followed by "thank you so much, do you prefer that I reach out to you closer to when CaRMS is due or would you rather I get things together now for an early letter?" if they say later (most did) I would send them my CV, list of interesting cases we had together and how much of a MOFO BOSS I was and stuff I learned while working with them. 

This method worked out pretty well for me, others may have done things differently though...

 

GOOD LUCK  

Do that for sure... Also ask for letter in any rotation where you get a good vibe with the preceptor. You may not even end up emailing them for it come carms, but it's such a relief to have back up letters. Also if someone offers a letter ... Take it. Best letters come from people that offer (you can request copies of your letters from carms so that's what I've based this on)

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As early as possible, let your preceptor know that you're interested in a letter of recommendation. It's pretty obvious for electives, but the advantage is is that if the staff knows ahead of time, they can specifically assign you to tasks that they can interpret your ability, will think of your work in the context of what you want to do, solicit feedback from residents/other staff, etc.

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Thank you all for the answers. So, even if my IM rotation starts in Fall 2020 and my CaRMS in in January 2021, I should ask for the letters as early as possible and when CaRMS starts send a request/ reminder? Will they have forgotten about me in a year? 

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Yes - I know it seems super odd given the large lapses in time but you won't regret having more letters to chose from. For people I hadn't worked with recently, I also sent my Carms headshot with my CV and rotation ITER to jog their memory when I reached out again closer to Carms applications. It's never a bad thing to have a couple extra letters in your back pocket in case your application plans change. 

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  • 4 months later...
On 6/14/2020 at 11:35 AM, skyuppercutt said:

I always asked for feedback mid rotation or a couple of days in and said something wonderful like "we've been working with eachother for a couple of days now. I'm really interested in this specialty and was wondering if you had any feedback on my performance and about what I can do better moving forward" this puts the thought in their mind.

At the end of my time with them, I would ask for a letter to see if they will sat yes or not. If not, then oooo poopy. if they say yes, then I would just something like "AMAZEBALLS" or "WOWZY" followed by "thank you so much, do you prefer that I reach out to you closer to when CaRMS is due or would you rather I get things together now for an early letter?" if they say later (most did) I would send them my CV, list of interesting cases we had together and how much of a MOFO BOSS I was and stuff I learned while working with them. 

This method worked out pretty well for me, others may have done things differently though...

 

GOOD LUCK  

Can you please clarify what you mean by an "early letter"? Also, I have heard of staff asking the student to actually write the letter and send it to them. What should I do in this situation?

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