Public Services/Research Support Librarian Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine Health Sciences Library Stratford, New Jersey
Background: The Library serves students, staff and faculty of a medical school and related graduate school of biomedical sciences. Students face the daunting yet crucial tasks of preparing Personal Statements for residency, scholarship and other applications. Students and residents are also encouraged to seek publication opportunities. We recognized a need for proofreading and editing assistance, and one of our librarians had the background and experience to provide such a service.
Description: We developed a flyer announcing available services and distributed it within the library, at student and residency orientations, committee meetings and other appropriate campus events. The service was also announced via the library’s website and Facebook page. Collaboration with the Center for Teaching and Learning resulted in numerous student referrals. The librarian managing the program receives documents to be reviewed via e-mail. She makes comments and suggested revisions in Microsoft Word’s “Track Changes” mode (or other appropriate software) and sends both “marked up” and “clean” versions to the author for review. Further consultation is available, but final editorial decisions are left to the writer.
Conclusion: Since introducing the service in June 2015, we have received numerous submissions of documents for review from students and staff members. Personal statements for Residency and Fellowship applications constitute the majority. Other submissions have included essays for medical school applications, conference posters, articles/submissions for publication, CV/resumes, scholarship applications, rotation audition applications and independent study final papers. Feedback has been extremely positive and we anticipate continuing to offer this service.