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Poor responses from POIs - make it or break it?


Guest lacrosse789

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Guest lacrosse789

Hey all, I'm applying to PhD/Ed. S. programs in school psychology. I am just wondering if it's worth applying to programs if my reaching out to POI's has not gone well.

 

#1 POI at a "reach school" : seemed really excited and engaged, asked for my CV, saw my CV, got a curt response back from her - do I still go for it? I got the vibe I wasn't up to their applicant standard.

 

#2 another POI at a different school in response to my reaching out to them just copied and pasted some info from their website into an email back to me... not even answering my questions/request to connect

 

I would like to note I had a great interaction with one at a different school.

 

I guess what I'm asking at does one prof reflect the whole program?

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Hey all, I'm applying to PhD/Ed. S. programs in school psychology. I am just wondering if it's worth applying to programs if my reaching out to POI's has not gone well.

 

I guess what I'm asking at does one prof reflect the whole program?

I don't think that one prof reflects the whole program at all. While their response MAY be representative of the program, it may not be. I will note that I wasn't accepted to any of the institutions where I had not had interactions with a POI. That said, there was one professor who was very enthusiastic and I was not accepted. There was one at which the professor was responsive and helpful but not particularly enthusiastic, and I was accepted. I don't think there's necessarily any correlation, beyond the fact that the professor MAY go to bat for you, and that some applications ask you for details about your POI(s), if any.

Edited by Aspireperspireinspire
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Don't read into it.

 

 

And because this is gradcafe where we discuss the minutia of things...

 

Prof #1 - you might be mistaking "curt" for professional and ending the interaction. 

 

 

Prof #2 - Is it possible that #2 pasted some information because you asked a question that was easily answered via their website? Could be the equivalent of "check the syllabus".   You also said: "not even answering my questions/request to connect". What did you specifically ask? I have a feeling your expectations might be too high for what is an appropriate response in this situation.

 

 

Also, some profs just don't like this "email me first before you apply" system because they see it as trying to circumvent the application process. 

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Sorry for the double post, had to run out the door. Let me elaborate on a point I made above.

 

Professors get dozens or hundreds of emails from potential students each year. I personally think they should reply to all of them but I don't think anything more than "I'm taking students and will review your application when I receive it," is required. Some show more interest and that's great, but it's really above and beyond.

 

It's hard to know without seeing what you wrote, but sending a long list of questions and/or making a request to meet personally (in a cold email) could even be a small faux pas because it might be interpreted as imposing on the professors time and not realizing how many inquiries they actually get. It's a bit like requesting an interview at a company before you've even sent in your job application. They're not obligated to meet you (if that's what you meant by connect) or answer your questions beyond "are you taking students?" <-- and that only if it's not posted on their website.

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Guest lacrosse789

You are probably right about the first prof. It was most likely more about being professional than "OMG YOU ARE AWESOME."

 

The second one I said, "I am interested in applying to X's program. I am interested in blah blah blah... do you feel that my interests lie with yours? if so, are you taking any students?" I got a copy and pasted general response back about the program (I could tell because the font sizes were different, haha).

 

I think the general consensus I am getting here is that it's a not a big deal since they get so many emails. I think I was thrown off since with another POI we had a half hour phone conversation and he connected me with some people at the program. I guess everyone is different. 

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I think I was thrown off since with another POI we had a half hour phone conversation and he connected me with some people at the program. I guess everyone is different. 

 

Ha, I can see how that would raise your expectations then. I definitely think that's unusual, though a good sign of course.

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