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The Waitlist Struggle

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I just wanted to contribute to the struggle. I'm on the wait list for a great program with an offer from another school. I just got the official funding offer, so I'm trying to figure out what to do. I talked to a graduate student and I was told to give it some time.

I have to give an answer by April 15 to the other program. Any ideas?

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@emhopefulme, keep your chin up. I feel like my impending rejection (off the wait list) is one big cosmic joke - got an interview at a great school that was fully funded with someone that I had high overlap in research interests with, but when it came to the interview, we didn't really click. Sometimes it's just not meant to be. Keep trucking forward, its all about the drive and commitment to the idea. I have faith in you ;)

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2 hours ago, Infinite544 said:

I just wanted to contribute to the struggle. I'm on the wait list for a great program with an offer from another school. I just got the official funding offer, so I'm trying to figure out what to do. I talked to a graduate student and I was told to give it some time.

I have to give an answer by April 15 to the other program. Any ideas?

Same boat. I've decided to hold out til April 13/14 and then taking the offer I have if I haven't heard back. Doesn't seem like there are many options beyond asking for an extension at the accepted school, which I'm not going to do. 

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1 hour ago, Timemachines said:

@emhopefulme, keep your chin up. I feel like my impending rejection (off the wait list) is one big cosmic joke - got an interview at a great school that was fully funded with someone that I had high overlap in research interests with, but when it came to the interview, we didn't really click. Sometimes it's just not meant to be. Keep trucking forward, its all about the drive and commitment to the idea. I have faith in you ;)

Thank you @Timemachinesfor your encouragement. I was half expecting the rejection and when it starts to sink it, it is really discouraging. I'll think about my plan B and see if I would do better next application cycle. Meantime, let me just grief over it. :| 

are you still going to accept the offer if you get off to the waitlist? 

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4 hours ago, emhopefulme said:

I just received news I got rejected off the waitlist. Kind of expected it yet well think I need time to grief and think about my plan B. All the best to the rest of you who are still waiting! Hope it will turn out well for you! 

{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{hugs}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}

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5 hours ago, MarineBluePsy said:

{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{hugs}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}

Back at youuu! Thanks. :) 

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I am so sorry to hear the news, @emhopefulme. It is really unfortunate that schools have to reject a qualified candidate like you. Although I am happy to hear that you are already thinking about your plan b and being resilient in that you are thinking about reapplying next year, I can understand that nothing would truly be soothing right now.  However, I am sure that you will get over this soon and you will have a better chance next year. Good luck!

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Just heard back from the 2nd to last school I am waitlisted at. Both of the people who had been extended offers for the PIs lab accepted yesterday. I only needed one of them to decline for me to get a spot, but unfortunately that is not how it worked out :(

I have one more school I am waiting on. My top choice. The professor had e-mailed a couple of weeks ago just to update that I'm still on the waitlist but she'd let me know some information as soon as possible. I'm trying to decide whether or not I should follow up with her.

I applied to twelve schools this year, and had six interview invites...I'm just feeling truly disappointed right now that I have not even been able to get accepted to one. Especially after spending so much money and time on the interview process. *sigh*. One more week, and fingers crossed.

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30 minutes ago, wootar said:

Just heard back from the 2nd to last school I am waitlisted at. Both of the people who had been extended offers for the PIs lab accepted yesterday. I only needed one of them to decline for me to get a spot, but unfortunately that is not how it worked out :(

I have one more school I am waiting on. My top choice. The professor had e-mailed a couple of weeks ago just to update that I'm still on the waitlist but she'd let me know some information as soon as possible. I'm trying to decide whether or not I should follow up with her.

I applied to twelve schools this year, and had six interview invites...I'm just feeling truly disappointed right now that I have not even been able to get accepted to one. Especially after spending so much money and time on the interview process. *sigh*. One more week, and fingers crossed.

I am keeping my fingers and toes crossed for you! I really hope it works out. <3 

If it doesn't, feel free to PM me. I had a few RA jobs that I was going to apply to saved and I could send them to you (that is if you're looking). 

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53 minutes ago, wootar said:

I applied to twelve schools this year, and had six interview invites...I'm just feeling truly disappointed right now that I have not even been able to get accepted to one. Especially after spending so much money and time on the interview process. *sigh*. One more week, and fingers crossed.

WOW! Six interview invites...the competitiveness of clinical psych programs is literally mind-boggling to me! My SO was lucky enough to get accepted everywhere that he received an interview to, but I feel like that is much more common within his field (cognitive psych/neuroscience). It's just crazy to me that you can have such a successful application cycle and get invited to interview at half of the programs you applied to, but that still does not guarantee anything. I know it's tough to feel like you wasted so much time and money and now have nothing to show for it, but for what it's worth it sounds like you must be a very competitive applicant that many schools would love to have as a student! :) Good luck on your last school!!!!!!

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Thanks for the support! @psyched55, I really appreciate the offer for the RA jobs. I'll definitely let you know how things turn out and if that is something I'll be considering. I'm currently a research coordinator at a University hospital, and one perk of working for the University is 7 credit hours of tuition remission each semester, so right now my backup plan may be just to stay in my job (even though the pay is a little low) and start some Master's classes as a non-degree. 

@FeelTheBern, it truly is mindboggling! I plan on asking for feedback if I don't get accepted at this last school, because I'm truly baffled at where my application is lacking. I have a decent gpa and gre (not great, but not bad), a second author publication, a second author submitted publication, and I'm working on a first author paper right now. I won departmental and university level awards for undergraduate research when I was still in school and, I work with patients in a research setting on a daily basis. And, I generally get along well with everyone, have impressed my bosses, and relate well to our patients...so I can't imagine I have some weird personal quirk keeping me out. Blahhhh....you can think about these things all day! So glad it worked out for your SO though, those programs are also pretty competitive, so that is excellent that they have been able to have a choice of what is the best fit!

I'll be sure to update about the last school...at least I know that no matter what it can only last about another week!

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I am so sorry @wootar to hear that one of your waitlists didn't work out... GOSH this is such a stressful process! Hearing everyone's news this week is very upsetting, but I am very impressed that you all are smart to already be thinking about plan B. It is really disturbing to me to see how someone who is as enthusiastic and established as you are in your field of interest is not getting multiple offers right away. I almost came to the point where I think that the decision at the end are being made on some arbitrary factors that have nothing to do with a student's qualifications whatsoever.

Let's hope for the best for your top choice, because that sounded pretty promising. Only another week! Fingers crossed for us!
 

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On 4/7/2016 at 7:31 PM, emhopefulme said:

Thank you @Timemachinesfor your encouragement. I was half expecting the rejection and when it starts to sink it, it is really discouraging. I'll think about my plan B and see if I would do better next application cycle. Meantime, let me just grief over it. :| 

are you still going to accept the offer if you get off to the waitlist? 

I know I won't be accepted as I've been in touch with the other candidate ( she was incredibly sweet and we exchanged contact info to keep in touch). She is accepting the offer and while I'm happy for her, it definitely stung. Its tough not to make it personal - when its about fit (whether research, or even personality), those are certainly things that are a reflection of you as a person.. at least to some extent. So while I tried to separate myself from that idea, acknowledging that I myself, felt really bizarre ( those gut feelings) that something about the interview didn't go right at least has made this a bit easier for me. I want to go into a program where I'm wanted. So with that sentiment in mind, I have all the faith in you and thought that this extra time will likely put you in the right direction and with the right PI. I am hoping to transition out of my current job into one with an aging focus ( my primary background, and interest) and hoping that it'll steer me in the right direction. Keep in touch about what pans out for you with a plan B. If you're around the northeast, I'd be happy to chat about all the options out here!

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Hey guys... anyone still waiting? Gosh, this waiting game is really wearing me down! Especially today, I am just sitting around and thinking about what would happen in the next five days or so, if it would be bearing any good news. By being merely days away from knowing my fate of attending a dream school or not is fundamentally stressful and anxiety-provoking. It gives me hope that my school has traditionally been admitting a quite a bit of people off the waitlist and that I witnessed it in the past, and I just hope that my status of being an international student will not impact the decision too much in the end. I am just sitting around and constantly alternating between hope and dismay. Constantly.

Also I have been ruminating whether I should have replied back to the waitlist email (although generic, was sent by an adcom professor) to reiterate my interests of being admitted to the school--whether that may have influenced their decision in any way. It is probably a foolish thing to think about at this point, but I can't help thinking the most minute things over and over. So anxious. I just had to vent it out today--sorry. Thank you guys for being on this post...really helps emotionally. Hats off to my brave comrades.

Edited by WillComeTrue

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9 hours ago, Timemachines said:

I know I won't be accepted as I've been in touch with the other candidate ( she was incredibly sweet and we exchanged contact info to keep in touch). She is accepting the offer and while I'm happy for her, it definitely stung. Its tough not to make it personal - when its about fit (whether research, or even personality), those are certainly things that are a reflection of you as a person.. at least to some extent. So while I tried to separate myself from that idea, acknowledging that I myself, felt really bizarre ( those gut feelings) that something about the interview didn't go right at least has made this a bit easier for me. I want to go into a program where I'm wanted. So with that sentiment in mind, I have all the faith in you and thought that this extra time will likely put you in the right direction and with the right PI. I am hoping to transition out of my current job into one with an aging focus ( my primary background, and interest) and hoping that it'll steer me in the right direction. Keep in touch about what pans out for you with a plan B. If you're around the northeast, I'd be happy to chat about all the options out here!

I am glad I didn't exchange contact information with any of the applicants because of this very reason.  It's one thing to not be chosen and know that some other person was, but it's totally different to be in contact with that person.  I do think you have the right attitude about wanting to go to a program that truly wants you.  In the end that is exactly what helped me make a decision.  With this possible job transition be research oriented or something else?

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I'm glad I exchanged contact info for that very reason (and also I like making friends).  I found out ahead of time that I most likely would not be accepted to one school.  At another school, I was waitlisted and eventually got an acceptance...  after I already made my decision.  I see how that could have been a bad thing if I didn't pick my hard-thought first choice school.

This April 15 business got me thinking...  where does the promised funding go if we miss the deadline?  Does it shift to some other person on the waitlist, leaving the original recipient with an acceptance but no more funding? 

Edited by another_time

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1 hour ago, another_time said:

I'm glad I exchanged contact info for that very reason (and also I like making friends).  I found out ahead of time that I most likely would not be accepted to one school.  At another school, I was waitlisted and eventually got an acceptance...  after I already made my decision.  I see how that could have been a bad thing if I didn't pick my hard-thought first choice school.

This April 15 business got me thinking...  where does the promised funding go if we miss the deadline?  Does it shift to some other person on the waitlist, leaving the original recipient with an acceptance but no more funding? 

I've been told by several programs that the funding follows whoever ends up accepting an offer, which makes sense and seems more than fair to me.  Although reading around the boards it seems some programs may not have that option.

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Yeah, but what if someone misses the April 15 deadline?  April 15 is specifically for financial support, not for admissions...  Couldn't any school take funding offers away after April 15 and admit another person off their wait-list with the funding that was taken away? 

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19 hours ago, Timemachines said:

I know I won't be accepted as I've been in touch with the other candidate ( she was incredibly sweet and we exchanged contact info to keep in touch). She is accepting the offer and while I'm happy for her, it definitely stung. Its tough not to make it personal - when its about fit (whether research, or even personality), those are certainly things that are a reflection of you as a person.. at least to some extent. So while I tried to separate myself from that idea, acknowledging that I myself, felt really bizarre ( those gut feelings) that something about the interview didn't go right at least has made this a bit easier for me. I want to go into a program where I'm wanted. So with that sentiment in mind, I have all the faith in you and thought that this extra time will likely put you in the right direction and with the right PI. I am hoping to transition out of my current job into one with an aging focus ( my primary background, and interest) and hoping that it'll steer me in the right direction. Keep in touch about what pans out for you with a plan B. If you're around the northeast, I'd be happy to chat about all the options out here!

I'm also interested in aging!! What are your specific interest in aging? :)

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13 hours ago, WillComeTrue said:

Hey guys... anyone still waiting? Gosh, this waiting game is really wearing me down! Especially today, I am just sitting around and thinking about what would happen in the next five days or so, if it would be bearing any good news. By being merely days away from knowing my fate of attending a dream school or not is fundamentally stressful and anxiety-provoking. It gives me hope that my school has traditionally been admitting a quite a bit of people off the waitlist and that I witnessed it in the past, and I just hope that my status of being an international student will not impact the decision too much in the end. I am just sitting around and constantly alternating between hope and dismay. Constantly.

Also I have been ruminating whether I should have replied back to the waitlist email (although generic, was sent by an adcom professor) to reiterate my interests of being admitted to the school--whether that may have influenced their decision in any way. It is probably a foolish thing to think about at this point, but I can't help thinking the most minute things over and over. So anxious. I just had to vent it out today--sorry. Thank you guys for being on this post...really helps emotionally. Hats off to my brave comrades.

Hang in there! You have already waited so long. I think you could send the adcom professor an email reiterating your interest and perhaps check if the vacancy has been filled yet? I know it's a total agony to be stuck in limbo but stay positive!!

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Thanks @emhopefulme... I think as the deadline is approaching I am getting more nervous each day...! But you are right, I should I try to stay positive as we have only a few days! I hope for the best to everyone who is still waiting...we can do it...!!! Last weekend of not knowing what our future holds...:blink:

 

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14 hours ago, another_time said:

Yeah, but what if someone misses the April 15 deadline?  April 15 is specifically for financial support, not for admissions...  Couldn't any school take funding offers away after April 15 and admit another person off their wait-list with the funding that was taken away? 

April 15th being a funding only deadline and not an admissions one could be field specific and if that is the case then those programs would state their expectations regarding applicants response times in the offer letter.  They can reserve the right to take away an applicants space and funding if they haven't responded by a certain deadline and then they are likely to chose someone off the waitlist.  Barring a life threatening emergency there's no reason an applicant should be missing the deadline to respond anyway.  

 

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Just now, MarineBluePsy said:

April 15th being a funding only deadline and not an admissions one could be field specific and if that is the case then those programs would state their expectations regarding applicants response times in the offer letter.  They can reserve the right to take away an applicants space and funding if they haven't responded by a certain deadline and then they are likely to chose someone off the waitlist.  Barring a life threatening emergency there's no reason an applicant should be missing the deadline to respond anyway.  

 

April 15 is not field specific.

  http://cgsnet.org/april-15-resolution

Anyway, I was just curious for facts. 

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I'm on a waitlist and just wanted to clarify something that I think many people believe (I know I did). Just because someone turns down an offer doesn't always mean a spot necessarily opens up for a student on a waitlist. In some cases, it seems the waitlist could just be a formality, or the offers that were rejected in your area may go to another area of the department, and that area might be able to take someone off their waitlist.

At the school I'm waitlisted at, they extended quite a few offers, and the majority of people turned them down. From what I was told, the graduate school obviously has to back all of the original offers, but then if they get turned down from the offered students, they (or the area at least, perhaps not the department as a whole) may lose all of those spots. So if they extended 8 offers let's say, and 3 people accepted where they were maybe looking for an area cohort of 5, you would think there were be at least a couple spots open for someone on the waitlist. However, at least for the school I'm talking about, they just ended up being able to take the 3 who accepted. Obviously it's extremely frustrating that they wouldn't take someone off the waitlist when they clearly had a large number of offers to back up with funding. I'm not sure how representative this program is in terms of doing that (and it may also vary by year), but I just wanted to mention this since I know many people on a waitlist assume their fate lies with someone turning down an offer--and that may be the case at many schools, but not at all...so unless you were specifically told that by the program, it may not be the case. 

Edited by Freudian_Slip

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46 minutes ago, Freudian_Slip said:

I'm on a waitlist and just wanted to clarify something that I think many people believe (I know I did). Just because someone turns down an offer doesn't always mean a spot necessarily opens up for a student on a waitlist. In some cases, it seems the waitlist could just be a formality, or the offers that were rejected in your area may go to another area of the department, and that area might be able to take someone off their waitlist.

At the school I'm waitlisted at, they extended quite a few offers, and the majority of people turned them down. From what I was told, the graduate school obviously has to back all of the original offers, but then if they get turned down from the offered students, they (or the area at least, perhaps not the department as a whole) may lose all of those spots. So if they extended 8 offers let's say, and 3 people accepted where they were maybe looking for an area cohort of 5, you would think there were be at least a couple spots open for someone on the waitlist. However, at least for the school I'm talking about, they just ended up being able to take the 3 who accepted. Obviously it's extremely frustrating that they wouldn't take someone off the waitlist when they clearly had a large number of offers to back up with funding. I'm not sure how representative this program is in terms of doing that (and it may also vary by year), but I just wanted to mention this since I know many people on a waitlist assume their fate lies with someone turning down an offer--and that may be the case at many schools, but not at all...so unless you were specifically told that by the program, it may not be the case. 

Yes, this is a very good point, @Freudian_Slip! Thank you for sharing this. I think schools may have very different waitlist policies that sometimes almost everyone on the waitlist ends up with an offer (in one instance the person was #17 on the waitlist!), but unfortunately many times this is not the case. Many factors may play roles in the admission process and waitlists may also be a part of that (including what you've mentioned, the waitlist may not be simple and "linear"). Luckily in many cases I've heard or experienced, there are a certain number of positions available in that particular year, and they try to fill up all positions, thus they may have a long waitlist.

Nonetheless, this waitlist fiasco is stressful and nonsensical and the more I get to hear other people's stories the more perplexed I become about this process.

Good luck with the school that you are waitlisted at! Stay positive:)

Edited by WillComeTrue

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