Students applying for their dream university know the roller-coaster of feelings they go throw mere moments before opening up either the physical letter or virtual e-mail that announces them whether they were accepted. What comes after that could be either a wave of joy or a wall of dread. 277 students who applied to Columbia University’s master’s program experienced both emotions in a relatively quick succession, after a human error made possible for all of them to be accepted.
Hence, on Wednesday, February 15th, Columbia University’s admissions office erroneously informed the 277 applicants that they were accepted to the master’s program only to take it all back one hour later. In light of these events, Julie Kornfeld, Vice Dean for Education at Columbia University stepped forward and declared for CNN everything was “due to human error”.
“We deeply apologize for this miscommunication.”, said Kornfeld. “We value the energy and enthusiasm that our applicants bring to the admissions process, and regret the stress and confusion caused by this mistake”, added Vice Dean for Education at Columbia University.
However, the Ivy League school is not the first university to experience such issues. Similar errors occurred over the past years at other renowned schools such as the State University of New York at Buffalo and Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Mellon University.
Last year, for example, SUNY Buffalo sent out approximately 5,100 acceptance letters to its applicants informing them they were accepted to study at the educational facility after an incorrect e-mail list was generated from a database of people who previously applied. In reality, all were still under review. Fortunately, the university’s officials caught wind of the mistake several hours later and issued written statements informing applicants of the mistake and subsequently their current status.
In the past, 800 applicants received a letter informing them they were accepted to study Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon. The letter went on to congratulate them and said each one was part of a select few of less than 9 percent of the more than 1200 applicants accepted. However, all 800 applicants received a corrected second letter that informed them they had actually been rejected.
Image Source: Wikipedia