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Application Trauma


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I don't think I adequately prepared myself for the level of stress I've had during the application process- which is saying a lot since I already stress tremendously just by nature.

My latest issue is as follows:

I submitted all of my documents to one of my top schools just about 2 weeks before the deadline. USPS was unable to provide me proof of delivery for my reference letters and I began to panic. I e-mailed the school to confirm if they received them, and their first response said their system did not show them. [insert panic attack] The next day, however, they confirmed that they were received [brief moment of relief] but then asked if I had submitted my actual application and supporting materials as well... these had been either emailed or submitted online nearly two weeks prior. [insert another meltdown] By now the deadline had passed- and so I forwarded the original message and attachments immediately. After this, I waited and waited and I still had not heard back from them and wrote them once more to see if the previous e-mail had been recived. Days passed before finally I got an e-mail this morning saying they still needed them. [what's this pressure in my chest? a heart attack?]

I have now submitted all of my materials (with the exception of my reference letters) three times. And due to time differences- I can't call them when they are open. And even if the timing weren't an issue- I tried calling to leave a message and couldn't get through at all. It will be at least a day (if not two or three or more) before I know if they received them.

I must have upset the gmail gods somehow and this is certainly a punishment.

I'm really concerned that despite the documentation of my submission dates that they will consider my application late and put me back at the bottom of the list for processing. I don't know if my nerves can handle anymore waiting!

Has anyone else had crazy application issues?

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If you are really torn up about this, send a calm email to the DGS/dept secretary/whoever the designated person of contact is. Explain the circumstances and don't go into any unnecessary detail. I really don't think it will be the issue you are making it out to be.

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I had issues with several schools whose online applications asked for .pdf files of my transcript (which is still in progress as I finish undergrad) - come January, two schools emailed me asking for transcripts. I don't know if my attachments didn't work, or they thought my scanned transcript looked sketchy, but I immediately went to the registrar's office to mail off copies.

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I find most schools have a grace period that allows for things to still be submitted before they begin reviewing applications. They understand that there are glitches all the time. Just try and email the head of the department and ask if they have received anything or if there is someone you could contact about making sure they have your materials. Good luck!

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myohmichael - calm down. At the moment you may want to shift your attention to other stuff

in your life even though this is a school you really want to attend and you care a lot about this.

This would be a good psychological trick you can employ for your well-being. Relax a little bit

and send in all the application materials (again!) Take it easy...

And i think JosephineBeuys gave a really good piece of advice. Just send a polite email to

the contact person in the program (perhaps cc it to the head/director also) and let them know

the unpleasant situation you are in. It may be very effective sometimes.

Good luck.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks everyone, I admit I had a moment of mental weakness and blew it a tad out of proportion. However, it just made it that much sweeter when the director of the program called me yesterday to let me know I was accepted!

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