A pharmacy residency letter of intent is typically a one-page document that expresses your interest in participating and completing a specific residency program. The purpose of this letter is to convey the necessary details about an applicant to the program director.
In simple terms, the pharmacy letter of intent should explain why you are pursuing that specific residency, why their residency is a good choice for you, personal goals during residency, which skills and experiences you possess to be successful in the program, and finally, your plans after the residency has been completed.
Oftentimes, this school letter of intent can be confused with a cover letter because they are somewhat similar. Cover letters or personal statement pages do have some overlap with letters of intent but there are some key features which make them different. These small differences include focus of the letter, format and length.
A cover letter is a simplistic professional correspondence that states your purpose for writing to the reader, reason of your interest, and your qualifications. It will usually then direct the reader’s attention to the resume or curriculum vitae. It’s a simple way to introduce yourself to a prospective employer.
In stark contrast, the letter of intent can contain the above, but also contains your career goals and objectives, any professional experience, leadership roles, and unique skills you may possess that the program might be looking for. Letters of intent are much more comprehensive than cover letters or personal statements.
Format is extremely important when drafting a letter of intent because it is often the first impression made on a residency program director. Simple mistakes such as grammatical or spelling errors, wrong addresses, incorrect length or font can quickly find the application at the bottom of the stack. Some things to keep in mind while drafting the letter of intent is to keep your sentence structure clear and concise so your message is conveyed without losing focus.
Generally, your letter should be formatted with one inch margins as well as standard 11 or 12 point font. Take into special consideration that your letter of intent should not be more than one or two pages at the absolute maximum. Less is more in regard to writing a pharmacy residency letter of intent, and best practice is to keep it to one page in length.
Address the letter to the appropriate party when writing. Usually, this will be the program director, but keep in mind that every residency will be different. Some residency programs have special application instructions that you receive from them that will dictate to who and how the letter should be written.
Always include a signature at the end of your letter of intent. This can be done electronically or hand written. Oftentimes, a digital or handwritten signature is better than simply writing your name out.
Avoid the use of a lot of pronouns. More often than not, you can convey the same message and still eliminate the use of pronouns such as “I,” “me,” or “my.” Sometimes, your sentences should be rephrased in order to capture the same meaning, but without the excessive use of pronouns.
Avoid copying and pasting the residency letter of intent to multiple programs. Although this idea is tempting to save time, this is bad practice because each letter of intent is unique to each specific residency. You also need to convey why you are interested in their residency program as well as why they should be interested in you. Avoiding copying and pasting also has the added benefit of not making the careless mistake of sending a letter addressed to one program to the wrong program.
Consider reading your letter out loud or have it read back to you. This helps you see any errors, including grammatical, that you may have not heard while writing and reading with your inner monologue. Also consider having a peer or colleague review the letter as they can catch any errors before the final submission of your letter of intent. Remember, this residency program is judging your ability to communicate professionally and clearly with your letter of intent.
Always review and do not rush! Do not send in any letter of intent without first reviewing it or having multiple people review it. During this process, look for areas to cut out excessive phrasing by stating the information more precisely. Simplicity is key when writing a pharmacy residency letter of intent.
Step 1 – Effective date and the applicant
The letter should start with the effective date and the information about the person applying for a residency program.
Step 2 – Opening
Next, you should tell why you are writing the letter of intent and what about the residency program interests you. This section should tell how you found the program, why you consider it unique, and why you want to take part in it.
Step 3 – Reasons why the program fits you
Further, you should explain why you think that the program is a good fit for you. It is a perfect place to tell how the program might help you enhance your skills and progress toward your career goals.
Step 4 – Reasons why you are a good fit for the program
In the next section of the letter of intent, it is important to explain why you consider yourself suitable for the residency program. You have to show how you can contribute to the program by describing what type of person you are, what skills you have, what is your background, etc. This information will be included in the rest of your application, but here, you need to write about your personal traits and experience in more detail.
Provide the details that would show how your educational background has prepared you to become a successful pharmacy resident. Try to show how your skills align with the institution’s or department’s mission.
Step 5 – Closing and signature
Make sure to thank your reader for their time and invite them to contact you with any questions. Finish the document by putting your signature.
From: Michael Ledovskiy
47 Rockledge St. Pasadena, TX 77506
Phone number: +1555444786
To: Gary Norman
Chief of Pharmacy Residency Department
St. David’s North Austin Medical Center
12221 N Mopac Expy, Austin, TX 78758
Dear Mr. Norman,
Thank you for taking the time to discuss the Pharmacy Residency program at St. David’s North Austin Medical Center with me. As you might remember, I am currently a fourth-year Doctor of Pharmacy at the Texas Tech School of Pharmacy. My aim is to become a practicing clinical pharmacist with a focus on Endocrinology. Therefore, a pharmacy residency will be an excellent opportunity to get hands-on experience and apply my knowledge in actual clinical situations. This way, I hope to contribute to achieving optimal drug therapy outcomes for the patients.
My studies at TTUHSC School of Pharmacy have given me a profound background in pharmaceutical theory and related fields. I strive to continue my studies as I firmly believe that theory is useful only in its applications. Your Pharmacy Residency program is known as one of the top in the US, offering residents the unique opportunity to work under the mentorship of prestigious pharmacists.
Being in the TTUHSC School of Pharmacy’s top-10 students’ list, I also developed great communication skills by giving presentations regarding new treatment methods in endocrinology at the school. As a result, I believe that I have the needed commitment and determination to become a successful endocrinology-based clinical pharmacist.
I look forward to the opportunity to meet with you for an interview. Thank you for your consideration.