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POI Writing LOR


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I feel like this is unique, and I'm not quite sure how to gauge the situation. A professor that I worked with recently left for a TT job at a different program. We had worked closely and this professor was very supportive, ultimately they were the one who convinced me to pursue grad study. They are writing one of my LORs. The program in which they currently work is my top choice, and I identify this person as a POI and explain our past work in the SOP. Coincidentally, they will be on the admissions committee.

The stars have all aligned, so it seems. However, this is my first application cycle and I'm not very familiar with how things work. I also don't want to be presumptious, so I was hoping for some honest feedback. How much weight can something like this carry in a decision?

Edited by bleepbloop
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I also had a POI at one of the institutions I applied to write a LOR. Bit of a different situation as I was applying to the place I earned my Master's from though it was a different department (faculty member had a joint appointment in the other department). I think it was a small piece in my favor because, as the faculty member was one of my biggest pushers for the PhD, I knew that she thought I would be a great fit for doc study in general and her research in particular. The reason I say small though is because you can never know for sure if someone else is in the app pool with a stronger fit to that faculty member. Out of the blue the POI could just decide they wanted to work with someone else. So the option I chose was to just be happy there was someone out there that thought I was ready for the PhD who could be an advocate for me and cross my fingers over everything else.

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This is certainly not a problem, and it may work in your favour... it's actually not that infrequent, particularly when people are applying to do a second degree at an institution where they've previously studied.  You shouldn't assume that this will mean that you will automatically be admitted - it always depends a great deal on the rest of the applicant pool, and (relevant to this case) a new professor's opinions are likely to carry less weight than a more senior faculty member's.  Still, having someone at the department to advocate for your admission can only help!  Best of luck!

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