Dalhousie University emails welcome note to applicants not yet accepted
Email sent to 900 students on wait list and whose applications are still under review
The registrar at Dalhousie University is apologizing after one of her staff accidentally sent out a congratulatory welcome email to about 900 applicants who hadn't been accepted to the Halifax university.
Mairead Barry, the university's acting registrar, says the email was sent out Saturday to around 2,500 applicants from Nova Scotia.
The email was intended to congratulate Nova Scotia students who have already been accepted and invite them to an upcoming university welcome session. But those on the school's wait list and whose applications are still under review ended up receiving it as well.
"September is fast approaching and the Dalhousie community can't wait to meet you! Dalhousie is hosting welcome sessions for accepted and incoming students all over the country and we'd love to see you there," the email reads.
"Come meet some of your classmates, learn how to register for classes and hear from an assistant registrar about planning for September."
Barry said she understands how the message may have caused confusion.
"The first email message did indicate in some sections … that they were accepted students and that these sessions were for accepted students," she said Monday.
"It was a human error on the part of one of our staff members who requested the email addresses to send a mass email to students inviting them to these sessions."
'It was a result of human error'
Barry said the staff member noticed the error after she got an email from an applicant looking for more clarification about the message.
The registrar's office sent out a followup email to applicants on Sunday, clarifying that the initial email was sent out inadvertently and it was not an offer of admission or acceptance.
"I sincerely apologize for any confusion this may have caused regarding your admission status — it was a result of human error on my part," read the email from Alyson Murray, an assistant registrar.
"Please note that receiving this email does not indicate that an offer of admission has been made or that you have been accepted to a program at Dalhousie."
Barry said she has not been contacted by any upset applicants who mistakenly thought they had been accepted. Any admission decisions come from the registrar's office in the form of a written letter.
The emails were not sent to students who have been refused admission, Barry said. She said an incident like this has not happened in the past.
The registrar's office is currently going through applications of the 900 students who were mistakenly sent the email to see if an offer can be made.
"[We] are going through the entire pool today and just reaching out to the students who are still waiting for information," she said.
Barry said these students are invited to attend the welcome sessions, given the possibility that they still may be accepted.