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Rejecting Offers?


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I'm in the process of rejecting a few of the offers I have received this season and would appreciate some advice on protocol:


1. One program allowed me to reject the offer via their application website. On the online form, I informed them where I chose to go instead and why. Should I also email the program directly and explain in further detail? A little background: This offer was always something I was going to reject from the start because I already had better offers so I didn't have much interaction with the department i.e. I didn't go visit or speak much with faculty.


2. Another program was one I visited and seriously debated accepting before I came to another decision. The department is great and were very welcoming towards me so what should I tell them beyond saying I wont be attending? Should I explain why? There were significant reasons that led to my decision but should I tell them that?

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If a program requests the information, let them know. However, if they do not request it, you do not need to rub salt in the wound.


For the program you were highly considering, maybe email your PI as well to decline. Thank them for their time and consideration, but you received another offer that matched your goals closer. 

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I think you should just tell them you will not be accepting their offer. If they want more information they'll ask. Don't say bad things about their program/offer unprompted!

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Yeah, the response depends on the investment into your application by that respective department. 


At one school I was nominated to receive an award that only 2 applicants per department can be nominated for; in that instance I'm going to send an actual email and/or give the person a call I've been communicating with.


The other schools Ima just use their application site.

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