Would it reflect well on me to drop off of a waitlist?

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )

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Joined: Sat May 19, 2012 4:30 pm

Would it reflect well on me to drop off of a waitlist?

Postby blurstoftimes » Sat May 19, 2012 4:45 pm

Hi all,

Longtime lurker, etc.

So here's my situation:

I applied last fall at a lot of different law schools, with stats: GPA ~ 3.4, LSAT = low 170s, non-URM, weak-medium softs. I didn't really get the results that I wanted - some acceptances (with money) to schools ranked ~20, a lot of waitlists and rejections higher up. My dream school is Michigan, where I'm currently riding the waitlist.

A few months ago (right after hearing back from most schools), I unexpectedly found some good, full-time employment in a legal-ish setting that I think will look pretty good on future applications, as well as some teaching that I'm doing at night. (I had applied right out of undergrad before, no real WE.) I'm making enough money to be fairly happy for another year and I've decided to re-apply next fall. I think my applications will be stronger for a number of reasons - this work experience, (very slightly) higher GPA (from my final semester of UG), I can apply earlier (applied around Thanksgiving before), and I feel like I can tailor my applications better to particular schools (I was just kind of sending out a generic PS to everyone before, although I did write a Why Michigan?).

So I've definitely decided to roll the dice again, and I'll be applying to many schools once again (not just my dream school). However, as I said, I'm still on the WL at Michigan. I haven't gotten a call yet (and I know they've started calling) so my hopes aren't too high anyway. Even if they did call me, I know that I would not accept, because I just can't afford full tuition anyway and am scared shitless of huge loans (I'd be happy to take out some loans, just not full tuition anywhere). The only reason I'm riding the waitlist is just curiousity if I'll get a call.

So my question is this: would there be any benefit for me to shoot them an email removing myself from the waitlist, explaining my plans, and re-affirming my desire to go to Michigan (I already sent a LOCI a month or two ago)? Do you think the admissions staff would see that as a good thing - dropping out, working hard, and trying again with my interest still very strong? Or would they not really care much either way, and should I keep riding the waitlist?

Advice appreciated, thanks!

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Re: Would it reflect well on me to drop off of a waitlist?

Postby blurbz » Sat May 19, 2012 4:49 pm

They probably won't care much, but it won't look bad. If you're definitely not going to accept if they call, you might as well let them know that now and tell them your plans. Your email will likely go into your application file which will be reopened when you apply again next year. At that point, your thoroughness will likely reflect well on you to some extent but your application will still be judged based on your numbers/essays/experiences.

tl;dr: Sure, withdraw. Won't hurt, might look nice next year.

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