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Interacting with Admissions Directors

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Senior Manager
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Interacting with Admissions Directors [#permalink] New post 06 Dec 2006, 09:13
I have applied to 4 schools so far and interacted with the admissions directors at 2 schools. So far my experience at the schools where I have been able to meet the directors has been fantastic - a lot more attention, response to e-mails, and even being invited for interviews.

My question to the group is - how much do you think access to the director of admissions can really help you? And if you do get to communicate with them, what should you let them know?
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 [#permalink] New post 06 Dec 2006, 09:21
I think this is an excelent question. When I applied to Cornell all of the folks I interacted with were outside the Admissions office...Professors, students, alumni, etc. Ultimated I was dinged there, and I wonder if I should have been a little more proactive reaching out to the ADCOM as well.
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 [#permalink] New post 06 Dec 2006, 18:14
how do you know who the adcom is on cornell?

do you guys have an idea who michael is at cornell? i believe he replies to emails..
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Re: Interacting with Admissions Directors [#permalink] New post 06 Dec 2006, 18:20
OasisNYK wrote:
I have applied to 4 schools so far and interacted with the admissions directors at 2 schools. So far my experience at the schools where I have been able to meet the directors has been fantastic - a lot more attention, response to e-mails, and even being invited for interviews.

My question to the group is - how much do you think access to the director of admissions can really help you? And if you do get to communicate with them, what should you let them know?


I'd love to know how you went about doing this.
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Re: Interacting with Admissions Directors [#permalink] New post 06 Dec 2006, 19:36
OasisNYK wrote:
I have applied to 4 schools so far and interacted with the admissions directors at 2 schools. So far my experience at the schools where I have been able to meet the directors has been fantastic - a lot more attention, response to e-mails, and even being invited for interviews.

My question to the group is - how much do you think access to the director of admissions can really help you? And if you do get to communicate with them, what should you let them know?


That's the key, interact, don't shotgun simple FAQs or attempt to be overly obseqious.

As for some of the lower tier schools, interaction can have amazing results. I flew over from Japan and had lunch with the Dean of Admissions at WXY school last spring and we continue to exchange mails to this day (of course, I was visiting my mother at the same time.)

Regarding the ultra-elites, I would venture to guess that they are already inundated with candidates using this exact strategy, so depending on what you say and how you say it, it may not yield dividends. Most schools have open discussion boards/forums staffed by adcom assistants. Keep asking the right questions and they will refer you to the Dean.

If you really want to make an impression, go and visit the school a few times before initiating the interaction. That will give you some "meat" to add to your questions, getting you something more than the same old copy and paste responses.
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 [#permalink] New post 06 Dec 2006, 19:46
willget800 wrote:
how do you know who the adcom is on cornell?

do you guys have an idea who michael is at cornell? i believe he replies to emails..


A little digging around on Cornell's website will reveal just about everyone who works in the Admissions department. Michael works in the front office of the admissions department and usually fields questions pretty quickly. He was very helpful when I applied.

Hey Hjort do you have any opinions on the subject?
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 [#permalink] New post 06 Dec 2006, 19:59
swgotz wrote:
willget800 wrote:
how do you know who the adcom is on cornell?

do you guys have an idea who michael is at cornell? i believe he replies to emails..


A little digging around on Cornell's website will reveal just about everyone who works in the Admissions department. Michael works in the front office of the admissions department and usually fields questions pretty quickly. He was very helpful when I applied.

Hey Hjort do you have any opinions on the subject?


Woah you're back!!! How you been? I haven't seen you around in a bit.
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 [#permalink] New post 06 Dec 2006, 20:03
rhyme wrote:

Woah you're back!!! How you been? I haven't seen you around in a bit.


Perhaps you haven't been looking hard enough! ;-)

I'm ramping up for R2 apps, hopefully with a bit more success this time!
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 [#permalink] New post 06 Dec 2006, 20:26
I view this as broadly analogous to giving informational interviews to fellow alumni and friends of friends. If someone seems to be genuinely interested in the job and the requisite qualifications, asks intelligent questions, and gives some interesting details about herself, this can be mutually beneficial interaction. If the person seems to be expecting some sort of favor from you right from the start, the call is likely to be frustrating for everyone involved.

While it might be obvious, it is worth remembering that admissions tends to be a very cyclical process. Even friendly admissions staff might be on their last nerve at the peak of the admissions season. If you start your relationship early (such as the end of the prior admissions season) admissions staff will likely be in a much better mood to spend time getting to know about you and your interest in the school. As usual, knowing enough about the school to carry off an intelligent conversation helps show that your interest is sincere.
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 [#permalink] New post 07 Dec 2006, 10:17
For me its not even about asking the Director for a favor - its about getting them to know my name and who I am. This way, when they review my file they can put a face to the name and it will be more personal. Also, if they believe I am weak on paper I hope my presence and personality make up for it in person.

At the end of the day its all a networking game. If you can get to know them, send a few updates on your profile (I update on the coursework I am taking and my recent promotion at work) then I figure you have improved your chances slightly. We will see how it all works out.

I have not and would not ask for a specific favor from any ADCOM member - I would only make my case as to why I should be given the opportunity to attend their school.
  [#permalink] 07 Dec 2006, 10:17
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