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Really "Recruitment Day" ... or interview


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A couple of weeks ago I was invited to a "Recruitment Day", all expenses covered (hotel/airfare/food) by one of my universities. As I have not been accepted yet (...or even been contacted by my POI!) I was wondering if others thought this visit might be an interview? I've read several posts on GradCafe that talk about how Recruitment Days/Weekends are a chance for the universities to impress the applicant, but I would think this would only be true for those who have been accepted? I was sent an itinerary for the trip - and there is an hour and a half allotted for what they call "faculty/grad student appointments." I'm hedging a guess that this may be what the university is calling their interviews?

I want to be as prepared as possible, and have begun to prepare for both, but I was wondering what others thought? Anyone care to weight in? Thanks!!!! :D

Edited by JessieLynn
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I am in a similar position: I have been invited to two recruitment weekends (expenses paid for both). I was definitely accepted to one of them. For the other one (my top choice), I was contacted by my POI very early in the application process and everything indicated that I would be accepted - but I haven't been officially. My POI made it sound like the recruitment weekend was basically to do just that, recruit me - show me the campus, the lab, meet students, etc. I think it just depends on the school. I would say, however, that it seems like there is a reason why schools call it a "recruitment" versus "interview" day/weekend. From what I've heard, recruitment means you are in or will likely be, and interview means, obviously, that you are being considered and they are still making cuts. It also can't be a bad sign that they are paying for expenses. I haven't had any "interview" visits, so I don't know if those are often paid for by the department. Anyway, I hope that helps.

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I always err on the side of caution and prepare for anything when I'm meeting people for the first time. Even if it's a foregone conclusion that you will be admitted, funding may still be up in the air, and if you want to work for a particular faculty member, that may not be decided either. Plus, you don't want to look dumb, just in case they do ask you some technical questions.

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