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nermah1

Who can be admitted to WUSTL?

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It's like DBBS is sending batch rejections right after New year's day

 

I understood myself rejected because I don't have much experience or high scores or GPA

 

But it seems like some guys with lots of experience like more than 3 years in labs and more than 2 publications also got rejected like me in the same time

 

Can't understand which genius is offered with interview from WashU

Edited by nermah1

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This genius was!

Kidding. Sorry, I couldn't resist that one. I'm hardly a genius... I did get an interview, but I see that people with more publications than I got rejected. I'm guessing it has to do with LoRs, a solid SoP, and if they feel that your research interests match with their program. When speaking with professors, I have heard that often very qualified students don't get offers of admission because they don't have the right "fit" for the school. That's not to say that those students aren't awesome researchers, though. To me it seems very hit and miss, and probably just depends on if the person perusing your application happens to like it. I'm sorry to hear about all the rejections, I know that sinking feeling.. but don't worry! If WashU doesn't want to make use of your talents, you're better off at another school anyway!

Edited by IncretinEffect33

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How different can their research be to be the wrong fit? I find it hard to believe that a program that admits 70+ students would be harder to find a fit than, let's say one that accepts 20 students and thus has a smaller number of professors. The way that I can rationalize this is:

  • Applicants are focused on WuSTL because it's their dream school so they are quick to post their rejection here, rather than an answer they got from a school who they did not focus on as much;
  • Applicants may be bitter - if I had 4 years of experience and 4 publications, you bet I'd be posting my rejection too - just human nature;
  • By posting these sudden rejections en masse, at a time when they know we will be most alert and chatty (right after New Year, but before classes start), you have to admit, that's some clever marketing to keep their competitive reputation up;
  • They may have stretched themselves too thin, possibly by accepting too many students in previous years or lowering a budget, and this year may just be an idle and highly selective year for them;
  • They may have to fill a specific queue, such as a set number of minority students or a limited number of internationals, and unfortunately perhaps too many applicants may be on the wrong side of that queue;
  • Maybe we all got chopped at the GRE and GPA selection process and they just think all else thereafter is irrelevant;
  • Or quite possibly, the "fit" of the program may have shifted from the "fit" of the majority of the students. I know in my MGG application, I made sure to say that I want to do translational research in molecular genetics. Now that I think about it, I'd be better served by a program of lower ranking, but one that offers more of a medical school feel.

You never know what's going on. Maybe their committee members got in a fight and now they're saying, "Well, since you don't want this student that I selected, I don't want yours, either!!!" That would be horrible :(

Edited by aba1984

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I saw that at least one person who was rejected recently with multiple publications, etc. was an international student, and those spots are specifically limited due to the availability of funding sources.  International students only have a handful of spots to compete for here.

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I find it's a major crapshoot when you get to the highest levels.  People with worse credentials than me got interviews at Harvard.  I didn't.

 

I'm not going to fuss.

 

That's a very mean thing to say. I'm glad Harvard doesn't want a toxic person like you.

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That's a very mean thing to say. I'm glad Harvard doesn't want a toxic person like you.

Wow, that's uncalled for. We all analyze numbers to no end. Acetylcholine isn't saying this person is worse, just saying that numbers don't really mean anything at the highest levels. Calm down.

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Many of the people posting about rejections didn't specify the program to which they applied. While DBBS accepts ~70 students each year, each program has its own interview process. Each program has its own level of competitiveness and % accepted.

 

I can speak from experience that publications aren't everything. Those LoRs make a big difference, as do your SoPs. WashU, more so than many other schools, seems dedicated to creating a community for its students. If they feel you won't fit in with the community at large, it may be enough to get a rejection. Some programs have recently been burned by giving interviews/acceptances to stellar students and having them all head to different programs. It's possible, for several schools, that you can be TOO good for admission. 

 

Also, our Immunology and Neuroscience programs are some of the more competitive components of DBBS and they seemed to be the most frequently posted rejections recently. 

 

Anyway, don't let WashU get you down!

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thanks for every reply

i hope i don't look like whining

i just wanted to know how someone could be selected so that i can notice my freinds applying next year

so one more questions is.....

for those who get an interview offer, are you contacted by your PI before interview offer? or did you contact them and have some talks? or mails

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You never know what's going on. Maybe their committee members got in a fight and now they're saying, "Well, since you don't want this student that I selected, I don't want yours, either!!!" That would be horrible :(

 

lol so hard I don't think this is the case. One possible explanation is that publications are not THAT important. Or they are looking for specifically certain type of people. I'm not sure. Got rejected yesterday  as an international. 

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Many schools don't bother to send out rejections until after interviews are done and many applicants have accepted their offers (April-ish). The DBBS programs seem to send out the vast majority of their rejections right after they make their first interview invites. It is easy to see how this is offputting to people who aren't getting rejections from anywhere else at the same time point. Realistically though, most programs must know that they would not consider accepting the majority of the eventual rejected applicants quite early on. Personally, I think the earlier notification is actually kinder- allows applicants to move on, focus on other interviews, make other plans, etc

 

Also, many people are quite snotty about St Louis as a location, and I think most of the DBBS programs have been burned by this. So they probably prefer to reject even highly-qualified applicants who gives a vibe of "I would deign to think about living in this awful city in their application"...

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Many schools don't bother to send out rejections until after interviews are done and many applicants have accepted their offers (April-ish). The DBBS programs seem to send out the vast majority of their rejections right after they make their first interview invites. It is easy to see how this is offputting to people who aren't getting rejections from anywhere else at the same time point. Realistically though, most programs must know that they would not consider accepting the majority of the eventual rejected applicants quite early on. Personally, I think the earlier notification is actually kinder- allows applicants to move on, focus on other interviews, make other plans, etc

 

Also, many people are quite snotty about St Louis as a location, and I think most of the DBBS programs have been burned by this. So they probably prefer to reject even highly-qualified applicants who gives a vibe of "I would deign to think about living in this awful city in their application"...

i agree. faster rejections are kinder!

anyway...i dont know about st louis....

is it not popular for living??

i thought it is a good famous city...

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i agree. faster rejections are kinder!

anyway...i dont know about st louis....

is it not popular for living??

i thought it is a good famous city...

 

Famous city =! good city to live in

Detroit is a famous city.

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St Louis is a perfectly nice mid-sized Midwestern city. Not everyone would like it, but the same could be said about any place. However, it doesn't have quite the cachet of Chicago, and among Americans from the coasts, the opinion that the coasts are the only places worth living in the US, is not entirely uncommon (regardless of whether they have ever tried living in the inner US).

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Compared to the influx of questionable characters that brought high crime with them to the Southeast over the 10 or so years, St. Louis is a dream city! I'm tired of having to select neighborhoods where I can go and can't go. St. Louis has a ton of good neighborhoods for students.

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I was given an interview at WUSTL wont specify the program, but the main thing that they looked for in the applicants was whether or not they were passionate about the school, research in general and most importantly their LoR. They also like underdogs. As in students from small liberal arts schools who managed to get alot of experience because it shows dedication to their field. Even if they didnt have as many opportunities given to them, they sought and fought for as many opportunities as they could. 

 

TLDR

 

They want people who love science and have demonstrated that they don't give up in the face of failure. They also want your proffs to notice and write about that too. 

 

 

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Meanwhile, for those of us who neither got interviews nor rejections from WuSTL yet, how can we be classified?

let's just forget about them. at least they didn't charge application fee. :D

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I'm slightly disappointed and a bit heartbroken I didn't get an interview offer.  I can't wait to see the group that has been chosen this coming graduate year.

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