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Late LOR

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How unfavorably is this going to look? I feel sick.

 

I knew one of my LORs is extremely busy, as he's the graduate coordinator at my undergrad (as well as his own research/teaching schedule right now). 

 

I asked anyway because 1. I thought he would get the letters in on time and 2. I know the letters will be great.

 

He managed to meet all the December deadlines, but he missed every single January 1st deadline.. which does not bode well for the 15th deadlines either.

 

I feel like I just wasted a ton of money and time on those applications.  If he can't get the letter in on time, that's surely to reflect poorly on his attitude towards me.

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I think the most important question is whether he gets them in at all.  From talking with people on admissions committees, they recognize that LOR writers are busy people, and your letter is one of many things for them to do.  Generally, as long as they receive the letter before they make any decisions and the letter is favorable, they are willing to overlook them missing the deadline. In short, all is not lost.

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Yeah, don't sweat it. I made a few logistical mistakes while applying-- accidentally turned one application in a few days late (misread the deadline...) and didn't send GRE scores to one school (accidentally sent it to a similarly named one twice...)-- and each time the department administration told me about the mistake in January, let me fix it, and then accepted me. I don't know how common that is, but I get the impression that if they want you in their program they're going to be reasonable about logistical snafus.

 

And don't assume that forgetting a deadline means your LOR writer doesn't think highly of you or didn't write you a good letter. You know the person's busy, and sometimes these things just happen. Your prof is almost certainly submitting the same letter to each program, so if s/he already got a round in December 15, it's already written and s/he probably just missed the January 1 deadline by mistake (who has a deadline on a national holiday anyway?).

 

You should probably get on your LOR writer to turn it in, but I wouldn't assume you've wasted your money just yet!

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I accidentally submitted to (Removed at Users Request) late (the pay screen was apparently not the *submit* screen), and contacted them asking to have them replace my writing sample with an updated version of it (added an abstract; corrected some mechanical errors).  They were totally cool about both.  And all of the other admissions secretaries I've talked to have been totally helpful.  (Removed at Users Request)

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I will add to the "don't worry about it" column.  Many schools even explicitly acknowledge that LORs can be late - I have seen a few say within 2 weeks of the deadline or so.  I would just contact your LOR writer and ask him to please submit ASAP for those schools, then contact the school to let them know that you have the LOR, but that he is submitting a few days late.  If you get it in within a reasonable amount of time, I'm sure there will be no problem. 

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I had the same issue with a very important recommender. I ended up sending emails to every program I was applying since they all varied in views towards late letters. Some programs are just starting to look at applications even though they were due mid-december while others said I better get someone else to submit a letter before Christmas. It varies but luckily now everything is covered. I just kept sending emails and calling my advisors cell until she submitted the letter. Don't feel bad for bugging them, this is your career they are messing with.

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I was contacted by a graduate coordinator of a school the other day. The coordinator said that the department is making their final decision, and I need to have my recommendation in if I am to be considered for acceptance. Is this a good sign? The email was rather informal, too.

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I was contacted by a graduate coordinator of a school the other day. The coordinator said that the department is making their final decision, and I need to have my recommendation in if I am to be considered for acceptance. Is this a good sign? The email was rather informal, too.

 

 I got a similar email as well from a program last week (right before my advisor submitted her letter). For some programs they'll review your application without the letter because they understand that it's not totally in your control. But for other programs they won't review your letter at all until all materials are submitted. So to answer your question, I think it depends on the committee but it's not a bad thing at all.

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Well, I've emailed him twice now with updates/reminders sans reply. Seriously? I know everyone is busy and/or on break as well, but this has been open for over a month. I'm so flustered. 

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Well, I've emailed him twice now with updates/reminders sans reply. Seriously? I know everyone is busy and/or on break as well, but this has been open for over a month. I'm so flustered. 

 May be time to ask someone else to submit just int case. then his letter will just be a bonus

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 May be time to ask someone else to submit just int case. then his letter will just be a bonus

 

I made contact with another professor who got in touch with him. So, besides the 3 deadlines missed on 1/1, we're all good. All applications complete. :)

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