Is a peer reference enough?

  1. Hi all,

    I am applying to an FNP program which requires 3 letters of reference. I've sent out 6, and I have three back. Two are from preceptors/former employers, both strong, and one is from a peer reference who is an FNP, well written and completed nursing school with me. I'm waiting for what seems like forever to get back the ones from my nurse manager/old professors. Is what I have sufficient? Thanks for your response!
  2. Visit bebbercorn profile page

    About bebbercorn, BSN, MSN, NP

    Joined: Feb '13; Posts: 446; Likes: 745
    from US
    Specialty: 10 year(s) of experience in Family practice, emergency


  3. by   elkpark
    Whether those are sufficient depends on how specific the school to which you are applying was about what they are looking for. What did the application forms say about references? Sometimes schools are v. specific about who they want references from, other schools aren't.
  4. by   bebbercorn
    The school only asks for professional references, no specifics. Hmmmm.
  5. by   2015
    Normally you need a supervisor/manager, professor (academic), and a FNP. However there are situations whereby you can't get those people. If that's the case, get as many references as you can and write an explanation why you could not get a professor etc. They don't like peer reference ie someone you have worked with in your unit because they don't feel that person can be objective. They feel that the person may be biased coz you could be friends. By professional they mean someone you would report to.
  6. by   elkpark
    Also, most grad schools do want to see a reference from someone who can comment on your academic work and potential to do graduate level academic work -- i.e., a former instructor/professor (even if they didn't specify that as a requirement).
  7. by   2015
    I agree. The onus is on you to make your case strong. I was admitted to a graduate program once (did not end up going coz i moved states) without a professor rec. I used a mentor who was a doctor and an NP. If you have no otherwise, just present to them what you have and hope for the best. However I would strongly discourage you from using a co-worker that did/does not supervise you.
  8. by   BostonFNP
    I review applications for a local NP program.

    I a perfect world I like to see a reference from a dean or professor per your academic potential, a reference from a prior or current employer per your professional practice, and a reference from a MD/NP, ideally a mentor, that knows you well and can comment on your clinical potential.

    At the end of the day what matters is the overall picture the references paint of you. I would rather see three exuberant references from employers over impersonal references from old professors or your childhood pediatrician or your mom or what have you.
  9. by   TashaLPN2006RN2012
    I went to Excelsior for my AAS and BSN, so they only give very generic reference, although I did use my advisor there to at least show what my academics were...then I used my Medical Director, who is also an MD of the company I work for, an NP that I shadowed, and a physician at one of the clinics I do case management at and for good measure I also had my RN supervisor write one as well. Maybe overkill but I wanted the people reviewing my application to really get a good picture of me through others eyes.
  10. by   bebbercorn
    Thanks all for the advice. The higher ups seem to have the least amount of time to fill these out. Makes you wonder what they're doing in those offices! Sigh, the wait is so frustrating!