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KendallC

Letter of Recommendation From Brother-in-Law??

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So my brother in law is a cardiothoracic surgeon (DO) and I have about 50 shadowing hours with just him alone on my CASPA application. I know LORs aren't supposed to be from immediate family members, but what is the deal with a brother-in-law?

He is definitely someone who can attest for my skills, my character and my passion for healthcare-- not because he's married to my sister and we hang out all the time... actually, the most time I ever spend with him WAS shadowing him for a week.

I'm pretty sure I can get the doctor I work under to write me a letter, so I don't NEED his, but I think it would be a good addition to my planned three. Would asking him to submit one hurt more than help? Obviously, he is going to say he's my brother-in-law. But if this letter is #4, I heard some programs only read up to three. And if his is one of those three and they are like "??? hes family"... that'd be bad? IDK 

Any opinions/help is appreciated!!

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I would say no. Especially the dude who said his dad wrote him a LOR, that's really unethical as your dad of course is going to write you an outstanding letter. Your brother-in-law provided you with good insight through shadowing, but again, I think it is unethical / goes against the rules to have a family member write your letter. Lets be honest, they're going to be unfairly biased in your favor rather than impartial. 

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On 6/12/2019 at 10:04 AM, DMBPA said:

My dad is a pediatrician and I got him to write a LOR and I was accepted to a school. It is possible to use immediate family members.

This is wildly unethical and I would throw your application out if I was on an admissions committee for that alone. 

 

OP, I personally would not have BIL write you a letter. Even if he can be impartial, other people reading the letter will doubt his impartiality anyway.

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On 6/12/2019 at 9:04 AM, DMBPA said:

My dad is a pediatrician and I got him to write a LOR and I was accepted to a school. It is possible to use immediate family members.

No it is NOT. It states that no family, ever. I would NEVER get a LOR from anyone close to my family.  

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On 6/14/2019 at 8:35 AM, camoman1234 said:

No it is NOT. It states that no family, ever. I would NEVER get a LOR from anyone close to my family.  

It does now.  Did it then? I think it would be far more unethical to conceal the relationship, than to solicit such a LOR in the first place.  It's clearly got some drawbacks, but does the OP have a better option?  50 hours of shadowing is certainly non-trivial, so looking forward to the eventual LOR needs, I would have counseled the OP to not follow a family member so extensively, because this problem is neither novel nor unpredictable.

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11 hours ago, rev ronin said:

It does now.  Did it then? I think it would be far more unethical to conceal the relationship, than to solicit such a LOR in the first place.  It's clearly got some drawbacks, but does the OP have a better option?  50 hours of shadowing is certainly non-trivial, so looking forward to the eventual LOR needs, I would have counseled the OP to not follow a family member so extensively, because this problem is neither novel nor unpredictable.

I agree about concealing it, but this person could have shadow someone different and 50 hrs is fine, but got sit through some surgeries then have him hook you up to shadow someone else. There is not excuse for him not being able to shadow someone else and having them write him a letter. 

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