Deparmental Recommendation Process

If you’re pursuing any of the following degrees: MD; DO; DDS; DMD; DVM; DPM; DN; DC, the Natural Sciences Department Recommendations Committee may write and submit a departmental recommendation for you.  The committee is chaired by Prof. Ramig, and has as members Profs. Bengston, Calamari, Dobi, Gaffney, Greer, Khuri, Peixoto, Spokony, and Wauchope.  To qualify for a recommendation, you must first meet the four requirements outlined below. 

Requirements for obtaining a departmental recommendation:

1. Required Courses:

You must have taken upper-level science courses (not including Bio I) from at least six different Baruch Natural Sciences professors or adjunct professors, by the time you are ready to apply.  Those six Baruch science professors must also consent to write you a recommendation.

At the discretion of the Committee, you may include upper-level Psychology courses you may have taken.

2. Research/Volunteer Experience:

Significant volunteering experience (e.g. working at a hospital in contact with patients in some way) is mandatory.  Volunteering experience is something schools want to see on your record, to show that you know what you’re getting into.

Research experience of some sort is highly desirable, but not required. One semester of Independent Study or Honors research may be included as an elective in your major.

3. You need a minimum overall GPA of 3.3; your science GPA must be higher.

4. Most of your science coursework once you become a Baruch student must have been done at Baruch.  Taking science courses at a community college as a Baruch student will reflect badly on your academic record, and may be grounds for denying you a departmental recommendation.


Additional courses you might take: Microbiology, Genetics, Physiology, Biochemistry, Medicinal Chemistry, Developmental Biology.  All students normally take Bio I and II, Physics I and II, Gen Chem I and II, Organic Chemistry I and II.

You should be earning mostly “A” grades in science courses.  A “C” grade in any science course will make it extremely difficult to gain entrance to degree programs listed above, and may be grounds for refusing you a recommendation.

Additional information:

1. Personal Statement:

This is a well-written document stating why you want to be a doctor/vet/dentist. It should make you stand out so that the admissions committee members want to meet you in an interview.  If you overcame some personal obstacle in life, that is a good basis for a personal statement.

The committee will edit your statement and make suggestions if you wish.  Please provide it to Dr. Ramig early in the process.

2. Timing:

Approach the committee at least 6 months before you intend to apply

For example, approach the committee in January of ‘19, the year in which you take the MCAT; your application to med school and the submission of the recommendation would be due in summer or early fall of ‘19; you would start school in the fall of ‘20.

The first step is to send Dr. Ramig your CV (please include what kind of school you’re applying to—med, dent…), and an Excel spreadsheet listing science and also upper-level psychology courses (in a separate section) taken at Baruch, grades, the instructors (including lab instructors), and when the courses were taken. Sort the data according to when the courses were taken.  Also include courses you may have now, with grades marked “pending”.

3.  Alternative:  Individual recommendations

Preparation and submission of a departmental recommendation is at the discretion of the Committee.  Even if you meet the requirements and guidelines listed above, the Committee might inform you that it would be more appropriate for you to seek individual recommendations. 

In the spring of the year you apply, the Committee will make an initial determination of whether we should collect individual recommendations from your professors.  This might not result in a departmental recommendation.  We will make a final determination about whether you will receive a departmental recommendation once all the individual letters have been submitted to us, usually sometime in June.

Final Note

Please know that each one of your professors will be asked to submit a recommendation for you.  The Committee’s function is to compile these and turn them into as strong a departmental recommendation as is warranted by your performance.  You should make an effort to speak up in class, introduce yourself to your professors, and go often to their office hours, so that you make a lasting positive impression.  A useless recommendation is the kind where it’s obvious the professor doesn’t remember you.  Don’t let yourself be an unmemorable student, or you’ll have a tough time getting into any post-bacc school.

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