Thursday, March 29, 2007

Here come decisions

We mailed all regular notification decisions to first-year applicants this afternoon. We emailed decisions around 5 p.m. CST (i.e. a few moments ago). The subject is "Notification from the University of Chicago" in case you didn't want to get your decision via email – you'll know what it looks like and can ignore it. We waited until the afternoon so that your counselors would not object to us bothering you during school. We’ve been working very hard for the last week (if not months) to get these thousands of letters out; you may have noticed because the blogging has been mostly left up to you. I figured that any further posting this week would only fuel your anxiety when you realized it was not the post you hoped for.

Well, this is the post you’ve been hoping for, dreading, etc. This is the most anxious time of the year for you and for us – we’re anxious because we’ve gotten to know you through your applications and we’ve watched you talk on the blog, and we know that not everyone gets admitted. We're anxious because we want the students we've admitted to come, and for every one of you to have wonderful options for next year. You’re anxious for obvious and similar reasons – you worked hard on your application, you worked hard in high school, and you’ve gotten to know and like each other and us. But I have also noticed that you have all been relatively level-headed about the news that is to come. You are savvy – your intelligent questions show that. You know what’s going on here.

The decision isn’t the end, though. For everyone, it will be the beginning of more questions – “where should I go” being the biggest one. Here are some answers to some questions that we expect will come up today.

You sent the email… so why isn’t it in my inbox right now?

Our emails will probably take a few hours to clear some mail servers. We did hit “send,” but you may not get the email until the evening.

I don’t think I got the email… what should I do?

If you did not get the email, you will have to wait for your decision in the mail. There is no need to call or email the office. We will not give you your decision by phone, and we will not re-send the decision email.

Did you email scholarship or financial aid decisions?

We did not email scholarship or financial aid decisions. Scholarship decisions were put in the mail with admission decisions this morning. Financial aid letters will come in the next weeks, depending on when your financial aid application became complete. We will not give out scholarship decisions over the phone or by email.

Only scholarship winners will be notified.

For international students who applied for financial aid and were admitted, your financial aid letter will be in your admit packet.

I was wait listed… what do I do now?

You should reply to an offer of admission at another school and put down a deposit there in the coming month. If you wish to remain on our waiting list, you should send back the form in the enclosed envelope. Also, contact your admission counselor – their contact information is given in the wait list letter. We have no way of knowing right now how many students we will be able to take off of the waiting list. Statistics for past years are given in the letter.

Is there an appeals process for admission or merit scholarship decisions?

No, there is no appeals process for admission decisions. There is no appeals process and no waiting or back-up list for merit scholarships.

Decisions are out… is this blog going away?

Yes, unfortunately, like all wonderful things it will slowly fade. Last year we noticed that there wasn’t as much traffic in the weeks after decisions. We expect that it will have outlived its use by April 15, when we will disable comments.

That’s all I can think of now – if more questions come up in the next few days, we will address them here. Good luck, everyone.