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Thursday, March 10, 2011

The light at the end of the tunnel...

It's been a crazy few days, it seems. And time is flying by. Wait, it's March already? Wow.... time really does fly when you are having fun!

Shirin (our Outreach & Recruitment Coordinator) and I traveled to Fresno ("FresYES," I say!) this past weekend for Pharmacy Information Day. It was an excellent program, I must admit. We hosted a group of very interested and highly-engaged prospective students (and parents!) I can't believe we are already in the middle of our Spring Information Days. For those not familiar with these programs, you really should visit our website and get registered. We will be visiting Long Beach in April and hosting a San Francisco event in May. Good stuff, good stuff.  (I just realized what a shameless plug that was.)

We had another terrific Admissions Committee meeting today.  The discussions have been very interesting and extremely insightful. Having in-depth discussions about the strengths and weaknesses of our applicants really gives us a sense of who we are admitting (or not admitting.)  These discussions reinforce the fact that we LOOK AT EVERYTHING -- essays, academic preparation, interview evaluations, on-site essay, work experiences, letters of recommendation, leadership, involvement, passion, interest, fit for UCSF, etc. Oh, and that list isn't in any particular order -- just what came to mind. (I'm sure some will read into it and assume essays are the most important, followed by academic preparation, etc. Not true.)

So....  back to the original reason for this post.

We. Must. Start. Sending. Out. Letters. ASAP!

It's been easy to distract ourselves from sending out notification letters -- but we can wait no longer. We will start doing this tomorrow. Yes, we will. =)

In the interest of responding to frequently asked questions, here's a Q&A style post for you:

Have you sent notification letters yet?
Not yet. But we will tomorrow. Both admission offers and non-offer letters (also known as "denial letters".)

Will you send all letters out at the same time?
No. Just some -- both offer letters and denial letters.

If I don't get an offer letter soon, does that mean I will get a denial letter later?

If I don't get a denial letter soon, does that mean I will get an offer letter later?

My friend received her letter, but I haven't received mine. Can I call you and find out when my letter will be sent out? 
No. We are committed to sending all notification letters out by April 1st. If you haven't heard from us by April 5th, then definitely contact us!

I heard you started sending out letters earlier last year. True?
We may have sent them earlier -- by a few days -- but every year is different. As my mom would say "things are constantly changing in a constantly-changing world."  Every year is different. Every admissions cycle is different.

Why is it taking so long? 
Well, from our perspective, we are right on track! Our final review process is very very thorough. We want to make sure we are making the right decisions based on solid reasoning/evidence/information. We double- and triple-check our work. (That's important, right?)

I attended the first interview day. Does that mean I'll be notified sooner?  Oh, and my friend interviewed on the last day. Does that mean he will be notified closer to April 1st?
Nope! At this point, everyone has interviewed. Our notification process doesn't take into account when someone interviewed.

Can you fax or email my notification letter?
No. We believe it's important to notify you with a letter in the mail.

Are offer letters sent in big envelopes and denial letters sent in little envelopes?
All letters are sent in same-sized envelopes. We keep it simple. (But this question always cracks me up.)

I have an offer from another school. Can you expedite my notification so I can make a decision now?
Unfortunately, we won't. As we've previously told all our applicants, we are committed to sending out all notification letters by April 1st. To expedite a decision/notification wouldn't be fair to you, to us, and to all other applicants.

And finally......

Is patience a good quality in a future pharmacist?
Yes! Absolutely!!!

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