E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

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Gail
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E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby Gail » Thu Dec 29, 2011 8:27 pm

Insanely bad idea? What about after your cycle is over and you plan on pulling out and trying again in the next cycle?

thederangedwang
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby thederangedwang » Thu Dec 29, 2011 8:33 pm

I shudder that

1) you not only gave this thought but

2) you thought about it hard enough to post it on tls

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MrPapagiorgio
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby MrPapagiorgio » Thu Dec 29, 2011 8:38 pm

You will either get no answer, or a generic "this has been the most competitive year yet and unfortunately..." answer.

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crumpledq
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby crumpledq » Thu Dec 29, 2011 8:43 pm

Gail wrote:Insanely bad idea? What about after your cycle is over and you plan on pulling out and trying again in the next cycle?


I disagree with thederangedwang. It could help, if you write the email the right way. You might explain that you are very interested in XXXX school and that you would like to re-apply, and ask what could strengthen your application.

Honestly, if they dinged or WLed you this time around, there isn't much chance that asking this question could hurt your chances (which are apparently not great, no offense), and there's a chance it could help if a) you actually get a helpful response and/or b) they appreciate how dedicated you are to their school. Sure, there's also a chance it might annoy them, but I doubt they would care very much and they probably don't have the time or interest to hold a grudge against a single applicant who asks, in my opinion, a reasonable question for someone interested in improving their chances. Worst case scenario, you get ignored or a form reply.

Perhaps I'm making thederangedwang shudder even more now ;)

thederangedwang
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby thederangedwang » Thu Dec 29, 2011 8:51 pm

my point is basically, there is a 0% chance they would actually tell you why you didnt get in or what would help you get in next time (most, if not all, schools expressly write on their website that you cannot inquire about an application).........there is a 1% chance they would hold a grudge against you.

its simple utility, you are better off not asking even if the chances of a negative consequence are low

msu1077
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby msu1077 » Thu Dec 29, 2011 8:57 pm

Actually, this seems to be a growing trend. I had two schools contact me to let me know this was an option after I applied last year and was rejected. I had the opportunity to sit down with someone on the admission committee at a cusp Tier 1/2 school and discuss what they saw most frequently in personal statements and how to really stand out amongst applicants with similar numbers. If you're truly interested in improving your application or if you really want to gain admission to one school in particular, I see no problem with it.

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crumpledq
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby crumpledq » Thu Dec 29, 2011 8:57 pm

thederangedwang wrote:my point is basically, there is a 0% chance they would actually tell you why you didnt get in or what would help you get in next time (most, if not all, schools expressly write on their website that you cannot inquire about an application).........there is a 1% chance they would hold a grudge against you.

its simple utility, you are better off not asking even if the chances of a negative consequence are low


Indeed. It seems to come down to whether one thinks there's any chance that it could help at all. If the chances are greater than 0% that it could help, I'd bet it's worth it--since you were already dinged once you don't have much to lose. But if thederangedwang is right that it's 0%, an email would not even be worth the opportunity cost of the time it takes to write it. Or write on this message board...hmmm this is making me reexamine the utility of this very post...getting very meta in here

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Grizz
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby Grizz » Thu Dec 29, 2011 8:57 pm

Probably you GPA and LSAT.

HTH

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Gail
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby Gail » Thu Dec 29, 2011 8:59 pm

crumpledq wrote:
Gail wrote:Insanely bad idea? What about after your cycle is over and you plan on pulling out and trying again in the next cycle?


I disagree with thederangedwang. It could help, if you write the email the right way. You might explain that you are very interested in XXXX school and that you would like to re-apply, and ask what could strengthen your application.

Honestly, if they dinged or WLed you this time around, there isn't much chance that asking this question could hurt your chances (which are apparently not great, no offense), and there's a chance it could help if a) you actually get a helpful response and/or b) they appreciate how dedicated you are to their school. Sure, there's also a chance it might annoy them, but I doubt they would care very much and they probably don't have the time or interest to hold a grudge against a single applicant who asks, in my opinion, a reasonable question for someone interested in improving their chances. Worst case scenario, you get ignored or a form reply.

Perhaps I'm making thederangedwang shudder even more now ;)


OK. Here's the deal for background:

I've been shocked by some of the responses I've received. Is it arrogance, sure? Misplaced arrogance? Definitely. But at schools that my numbers should be solid for, I was WL'd and left rocked by it. There must be something wrong with the application, and I'd like to know for the next cycle what the pattern was. I want to know what my fatal flaw was and correct it. This is a really direct way to find out. Does that make sense?

This post was 80% about me, and maybe 20% about anyone else in a similar situation left jaw-dropped. I didn't see any other indication in another topic from my searches, so I made this topic for future boolean searches (waitlist and rejection and ask and e-mail and admissions).


thederangedwang brings up a really good point that I am happy he brought up. Would it even be worth the time? Probably not. So that seems to answer it.

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Gail
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby Gail » Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:00 pm

Grizz wrote:Probably you GPA and LSAT.

HTH


Above median and 75th percent for the school I'm thinking of.

My situation:


HTH

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NoleinNY
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby NoleinNY » Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:01 pm

Gail wrote:Insanely bad idea? What about after your cycle is over and you plan on pulling out and trying again in the next cycle?


It's a silly idea....

That said, I did email the admissions department of a certain TopTwentyToilet me after they sent me an invitation to apply to their law school that cycle just a week after the rejection letter arrived. It felt good.

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Grizz
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby Grizz » Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:04 pm

Gail wrote:
Grizz wrote:Probably you GPA and LSAT.

HTH


Above median and 75th percent for the school I'm thinking of.

My situation:


HTH

Forum search yield protection, hth

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Bildungsroman
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby Bildungsroman » Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:09 pm

Grizz wrote:
Gail wrote:
Grizz wrote:Probably you GPA and LSAT.

HTH


Above median and 75th percent for the school I'm thinking of.

My situation:


HTH

Forum search yield protection, hth

Or it could be some cripplingly bad personality that expressed itself through app documents. Or C+F. Whatever it is, it should be obvious. Have someone with a good personality who doesn't really like you read over your application.

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Gail
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby Gail » Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:21 pm

Bildungsroman wrote:
Grizz wrote:
Gail wrote:
Grizz wrote:Probably you GPA and LSAT.

HTH


Above median and 75th percent for the school I'm thinking of.

My situation:


HTH

Forum search yield protection, hth

Or it could be some cripplingly bad personality that expressed itself through app documents. Or C+F. Whatever it is, it should be obvious. Have someone with a good personality who doesn't really like you read over your application.


Bingo. What I'm thinking. YP seems too good to be true. But thanks, sorry for being a bitch. I get defensive.

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ben4847
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby ben4847 » Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:25 pm

msu1077 wrote:Actually, this seems to be a growing trend. I had two schools contact me to let me know this was an option after I applied last year and was rejected. I had the opportunity to sit down with someone on the admission committee at a cusp Tier 1/2 school and discuss what they saw most frequently in personal statements and how to really stand out amongst applicants with similar numbers. If you're truly interested in improving your application or if you really want to gain admission to one school in particular, I see no problem with it.


I don't understand this. If they are going to tell you to write a better personal statement, and how to do that, why don't they just forget the stupid statement and admit you straight up.
If they are going to tell you to have a better GPA or LSAT-?

MumofCad
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby MumofCad » Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:38 pm

You would probably be better off just finding some people in the thread for the school that WL'd you and having them look over your PS - then write a LOCI for the school and have them help and look over that as well. They've already been proven to have what the school is looking for and that would be your best bet at getting off the WL and into the school you are hoping for.

If you are just re-applying next year, again, finding successful applicants in the thread to get some feedback on your package will probably yield good results. Obviously, don't get just a single opinion, but try to get feedback from a few successful applicants and see if you notice a theme in their concerns.

YP is thrown around alot on here, but the truth is, some people with good numbers always get in to every school. You want to find out what it is about those students that is making them stand out from like candidates and thus making the school jump even if they don't believe the person is likely to attend. This is the crux whether you have really high or really low numbers - you have to stand out from the other people in your pool. People who stand out, get in and you might have to tailor your apps to the schools a bit in a way that successful applicants may know something about. A "why" statement usually can't hurt, a LOCI certainly can't....and perhaps a few adjustments to your PS if forced to the next cycle could make the difference. Good luck!

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sailboat
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby sailboat » Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:59 pm

Interestingly, FWIW, I had a friend who was rejected from a T30 last cycle, and he called them up in April or May to ask essentially the same question (though I think he had had a personal interview with an admissions officer while visiting the campus, so there was already something of a connection there). They basically told him he wasn't going to get in with his numbers, period. But it surprised me that they even told him that much, rather than the standard "many highly qualified applicants" business.

thederangedwang
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby thederangedwang » Thu Dec 29, 2011 11:04 pm

if you want, post your ps here...we can read it and tell you if it sucks/is the reason you got rejected

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Shooter
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby Shooter » Thu Dec 29, 2011 11:06 pm

thederangedwang wrote:if you want, post your ps here...we can read it and tell you if it sucks/is the reason you got rejected


Yes, I like this idea.

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Mr. Pancakes
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby Mr. Pancakes » Thu Dec 29, 2011 11:12 pm

I had a friend do this and they told him he would have been accepted if he would have applied earlier in the cycle. I think he was able to gain some decent info. At least he knew it wasn't his gpa, lsat or whatever.
Last edited by Mr. Pancakes on Thu Dec 29, 2011 11:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

gatorapplicant
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby gatorapplicant » Thu Dec 29, 2011 11:49 pm

i emailed UVA after i was rejected. the dean basically said it was bc my numbers were not high enough, but i had a competitive application, and please feel free to email her if i'm interested in transferring later on (i'm not). soo nothing groundbreaking, but i found it comforting and somewhat informative.

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westinghouse60
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby westinghouse60 » Fri Dec 30, 2011 1:04 am

It seems like an especially bad idea if you've just been WL'd and not rejected- would probably come across as "how dare you WL me". The answer is probably just YPing if you are a strong applicant or just ordinary WL if you're below median(s). LOCI in the former case, and in the latter case wait until they actually reject you or the cycle is over if you send them an email asking this at all...

NCB166
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Re: E-mailing a school and asking why you were reject/waitlist

Postby NCB166 » Fri Dec 30, 2011 1:20 pm

If you are talking about the school that I think you are talking about, their personal statement asked you to address:

"Why do you want to study law?

Why do you want to study at The University of XXX Law?

What has been your most significant accomplishment?

How would you contribute to our law school community and the legal progression?

Describe any life experiences which would indicate unusual drive, determination, motivation, or leadership characteristics.


If you did not try to cater your personal statement to this, it is possible that they assumed you weren't interested and WLed you for YP. Of course, this is just speculation on my part. For all I know, you wrote a personal statement that was perfectly tailored to what they wanted. I'm just trying to theorize here. FWIW, I don't think that your numbers are the reason you were waitlisted because I got in with very similar numbers to you and am also OOS. I think that there was something in your application which probably sent the message that to this school that they weren't a serious option for you. With a letter of LOCI, you should be fine. If I were you, i'd wait for the cycle to play out before I considered the question in your original post.

Good Luck.




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