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« The Job Application Materials Arms Race (guest post by Shane Ralston) | Main | Weaknesses in recommendation letters? »

02/10/2021

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Chivers Butler

Re: iv, My SO and I applied together. In one case, I missed the deadline for one school, but when my SO was sent an offer and mentioned this fact, they encouraged me to submit an application. In a different case at a school where we be both applied but only one was accepted on the first round of offers, an email resulted in an offer to the other.

Grad Student H

I can offer two bits of advice from my experience:
1. If you're on a waitlist for a program you would definitely accept an offer from, it is worth mentioning this. It might not be as useful if it's a top-10 program, but it can't really hurt you. A simple email saying, "I'm thrilled to be on your waitlist, and I wanted to inform you that I will accept an offer from your department immediately if it is given to me." However, only do this with one program. Don't be that person who tells every program you'll accept immediately if given an offer.
2. If you are already accepted to a program and your partner/significant other is waitlisted, you can tell the program that your decision is at least partly based on your partner's end result. This is especially useful if you don't share a last name and your relationship isn't obvious otherwise. A great time to do this is immediately after receiving an offer, send an email saying, "I'm delighted to receive an offer from your program and I would love to accept right now, but I have to consider my partner/significant other, N, and their decisions." I had the benefit of being put at the top of a waitlist after my partner got an offer from a program which had not yet made a waitlist, but I think it's worth mentioning in any case.
In general, I think you should be open with programs and see if they can do anything to help you. If you enroll, you'll be working with these people for several years, so these interactions can help you learn what kind of faculty you'll be working with.

Applicant

Re: Chivers Butler
This is really helpful!
"In a different case at a school where we be both applied but only one was accepted on the first round of offers, an email resulted in an offer to the other."
I wonder what happened in the middle? Did one of you email the DGS (or whoever sent out the offer) to inform them of the two-body situation? How long after the first offer was received?
Thanks!

Chivers Butler

Re: Applicant.

It was many years ago now, but I remember it being a very quick turnaround. We just replied to whomever sent the initial offer of acceptance to inform them of the two-body issue.

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