Just in case anyone is curious about the content of the email:
We wish to inform you that, after careful deliberation, our Admissions Committee has decided to postpone making a final decision on your candidacy, and we are placing your application in our Reserve group. Because we are uncertain regarding the plans of some applicants whom we have already admitted, it is necessary for us to postpone making a determination on your application until the end of May, when we will begin reviewing those candidates on Reserve and offering some admission to our 2012 entering class.
During this admissions season, we anticipate that, altogether, almost 8,000 candidates will apply for the approximately 380 places. This year’s applicant pool promises to be among the largest and most highly qualified in our history. Competition for admission has never been more keen. We share your disappointment that, with such an abundance of highly qualified applicants for so relatively few openings, we are now unable to provide you and other highly qualified applicants with a definitive decision on your candidacy for admission.
After considering carefully whether or not you wish to remain in consideration for admission to Columbia this August, kindly notify us of that decision. You may do so by submitting the online Reserve Response Form at http://www.law.columbia.edu/firstreserve
as soon as possible but no later than Monday, May 7, 2012. If you do wish to remain in our Reserve group, please ensure that the contact information you provide is up to date.
I would like to reaffirm that, at this point in the selection process, we take this action to provide you with every opportunity to be chosen for admission into our Class of 2015.
POLICIES AND PRACTICES PERTAINING TO COLUMBIA LAW SCHOOL'S RESERVE CATEGORY
Unlike the applicants who are "wait listed" at some law schools, candidates placed on Reserve at Columbia are at no point ranked ordinally. Rather, each application on Reserve is reviewed again in its entirety by the Admissions Committee on a periodic basis, as openings in the entering class materialize. Particular attention is focused on recent developments—such as final term grades, thesis evaluations, election to Phi Beta Kappa, departmental honors, or other awards bestowed upon graduation for scholarship, leadership or service.
If you are currently in school and have not already done so, we ask that you have sent directly to us transcripts covering courses that were not completed at the time of your application. If you are taking courses this term, it would be helpful if you would send us a report of your final grades in a personal letter as soon as they become known to you, in addition to requesting from your registrar that an official transcript be sent to the Law School.
The next evaluation of candidates on Reserve will begin at the end of May. At that time some applicants will be offered or denied admission. Others, however, will be asked if they wish to continue on Reserve in order to be considered for those vacancies that normally arise during the summer months.
Because the number of students admitted from the Reserve group varies considerably from year to year, it is not possible to predict reliably how many candidates on Reserve will be admitted in any given cycle. Furthermore, because the number of applicants on Reserve is not released by the Admissions Committee, a candidate is unable to calculate the probability of his or her admission. Active candidates should be encouraged, however, to know that every year some applicants are offered admission from the Reserve category, eventually enroll, and proceed to distinguish themselves at the Law School.
It is not possible for candidates on Reserve to have an interview with the Dean of Admissions or make an appearance before the Admissions Committee. Also, in order to protect the confidentiality that each applicant entrusts to us, we cannot discuss the substance or outcome of a candidacy over the telephone. If you have questions or concerns, or if you believe that materials already submitted need amplification, please forward a written statement to the attention of Dean Nkonye Iwerebon. If we determine that further information would be helpful in our upcoming review of your application, we shall, of course, contact you.
Thank you for your patience, understanding and continuing interest in Columbia Law School.