Minor IA - am I totally screwed?

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alisonbechdel

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Hi all,
I just received word from my prehealth committee that I have a minor non academic IA on my record.

The incident: When I was a freshman, the dorms at my school had a no-overnight guest policy due to COVID. I had checked in another student to my dorm but forgotten to check them out when they left. I received an email from Student Conduct reading:

The [Student Conduct Office] were recently notified that you were documented for an alleged violation of one or more of the following policies in [School] Community Standards: 202(5) Guests and Visitation (A)

This pertains to an incident which occurred in the following location: [DORM]. More specifically, the report indicated: [FRIEND NAME] was checked in by [ME] and was still checked in at 6:00am. Overnight guests are not permitted in the residence halls and students are expected to check their guests out at the desk when leaving the hall.

Since this is the first time in which you have been documented for this behavior, we hope that this notification will serve as a learning moment in your college career at [SCHOOL]. Should we receive documentation in the future alleging that you engaged in misconduct, the matter may be addressed more formally through the student conduct process (potentially including a hearing).

I was not told I needed to take action after receiving this, there was no hearing process. I did not know I had an IA on my record until I was told by my prehealth committee today.

Since there is a record of this, I assume it counts as an IA, but I am wondering whether this will hurt my chances significantly. I am a fairly strong applicant otherwise (strong stats, ECs, letters). I plan to address this by explaining what happened and that I now use multiple planners so I forget stuff less often.

TIA.

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I doubt this hurts you. The ones that really do are anything relating to academic misconduct and anything relating to criminal behavior. Be sure to report it throughout the process when asked if you have an IA and give an explanation (in conjunction with your advising office) but I think most adcoms won't care.
 
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What advice did your prehealth advising office give you?
Just to schedule a meeting with them to discuss before I submit my primary. The meeting is scheduled for next week, I also just wanted to get a a feel for what adcoms would think as I am freaking out a bit
 
I had a slightly more serious but also minor non academic IA and my cycle went relatively well. People might make fun of your for taking this seriously but Please just spend a small amount of time slowly working on your explanation's wording but don't lose sleep over it. Everybody makes mistakes and I doubt that something this minor compared to cheating or drug use will have any noticeable effect on your app.
 
I doubt this hurts you. The ones that really do are anything relating to academic misconduct and anything relating to criminal behavior. Be sure to report it throughout the process when asked if you have an IA and give an explanation (in conjunction with your advising office) but I think most adcoms won't care.
Thank you, this is really reassuring to hear.
 
I had a slightly more serious but also minor non academic IA and my cycle went relatively well. People might make fun of your for taking this seriously but Please just spend a small amount of time slowly working on your explanation's wording but don't lose sleep over it. Everybody makes mistakes and I doubt that something this minor compared to cheating or drug use will have any noticeable effect on your app.
Thank you. I really hope it's not a big deal.
 
Thank you. I really hope it's not a big deal.

If there's something I can tell you to help you not worry about this, let me know. The basic outline of your short explanation is essentially: 1. facts of event. 2. Your reflection(s) 3. What you learned and what steps you took or are taking to avoid making the same mistake.
 
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If there's something I can tell you to help you not worry about this, let me know. The basic outline of your short explanation is essentially: 1. facts of event. 2. Your reflection(s) 3. What you learned and what steps you took or are taking to avoid making the same mistake.
my biggest fear is that even having it is a big enough red flag to get my application tossed--am i just being neurotic? is an honest explanation enough to fix it?
 
You will not get tossed for forgetting to sign a guest out of your dorm. We've all done something like that, most of us were not caught. We know that you had the misfortune of getting caught and we wouldn't hold it against you.
 
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my biggest fear is that even having it is a big enough red flag to get my application tossed--am i just being neurotic? is an honest explanation enough to fix it?
Find out how your prehealth advising office wants you to disclose the IA. Basically state the facts, the process, and any sanctions you had. Find out how your prehealth advising office will disclose the incident if they include it in their committee letter.

To the point, this is nothing to worry about. COVID was a different time when it came to controlling the virus.

 
my biggest fear is that even having it is a big enough red flag to get my application tossed--am i just being neurotic? is an honest explanation enough to fix it?

Imagine you are an app reviewer and you come across an applicant who has the stats and the experiences to be a great fit at your school but they were written up because they forgot to sign out a guest one time as a freshman. Would you reject that applicant despite their (otherwise) outstanding application and potential to be a great addition to your class?

Now on the flip side, would you want to attend a school that rejects great applicants because they made a trivial mistake as a young freshman?
 
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Find out how your prehealth advising office wants you to disclose the IA. Basically state the facts, the process, and any sanctions you had. Find out how your prehealth advising office will disclose the incident if they include it in their committee letter.

To the point, this is nothing to worry about. COVID was a different time when it came to controlling the virus.

If there weren't sanctions or a process beyond the email I got, would I just write about the lessons learned from it (e.g. rules, esp for student safety, need to be enforced even if i didn't intend to break them/were negligent in following them)?

Thank you for the resources--I appreciate the perspective a lot and I'm grateful for the reality check.
 
You will not get tossed for forgetting to sign a guest out of your dorm. We've all done something like that, most of us were not caught. We know that you had the misfortune of getting caught and we wouldn't hold it against you.
This is so kind, thank you.
 
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Imagine you are an app reviewer and you come across an applicant who has the stats and the experiences to be a great fit at your school but they were written up because they forgot to sign out a guest one time as a freshman. Would you reject that applicant despite their (otherwise) outstanding application and potential to be a great addition to your class?

Now on the flip side, would you want to attend a school that rejects great applicants because they made a trivial mistake as a young freshman?
Ah that's a really good point --it does seem very trivial when framed like that haha. Appreciate your help <3
 
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This kind of IA makes me roll my eyes (at your university, not at you) when we review an application. It won't matter even a tiny bit.
 
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I had a similar covid IA and had 10 II and 6 A’s all from MD school. You’ll be fine, also you have a 526 so I wouldn’t worry about it
 
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