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Professor Not Responding to Emails

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by TurkDorian, May 21, 2014.

  1. TurkDorian

    TurkDorian 2+ Year Member

    Jul 21, 2013
    Hey guys,

    I had a quick question. I asked one of my professors for a reference letter before the end of this previous school year and they said yes. All of our communication was in person and I didn't really send any emails. I emailed this professor reminding them that the letter would be do soon but I haven't gotten a response. I went to their office but no one was there.

    Does any know what I should do?

    I had a backup LoR writer but they left the country for the summer and won't be able to submit their letter, so this professor who I'm trying to contact is my only hope for a complete set of letters.
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  3. doctorgirldaisy


    Jun 8, 2013
  4. lmn

    lmn 2+ Year Member

    Dec 18, 2013
    Unfortunately you committed the big mistake of not really keeping on top of your letter writer and waiting until the last minute, at this point try to do whatever you can to get in contact with them and get that letter or else begin a scramble to get a letter from someone as a replacement.
    sb247 likes this.
  5. Donald Kimball

    Donald Kimball Yale thing? 5+ Year Member

    Aug 2, 2012
    Professors get an enormous amount of emails every day, and I've had this problem happen to me.

    Try to get in touch with other professors in the building/lab who work with or know your target professor. Something like "I'm trying to get in touch with Dr. X, would you mind letting him know?"

    Ask other professors and/or the department administration for his office hours and class hours. Try to catch him.

    Camp out by his office.
  6. WillburCobb

    WillburCobb I am the pull out king Banned Account on Hold 5+ Year Member

    I had the exact same issue with a letter writer. I just had to keep making numerous trips to his office to try and catch him. Every e-mail I sent he just deleted.
  7. Kochanie

    Kochanie 2+ Year Member

    Dec 16, 2013
    Whenever a professor ignores me, I show up at their office.
    lnvictus and sb247 like this.
  8. Aerus

    Aerus Elemental Alchemist 5+ Year Member

    Apr 20, 2012
    hSDN Member
    hSDN Alumni
    Ignoring or looking over an email is one thing but DELETING? If the professor put in that much effort in a single email, are you sure that's a letter you want?
  9. WillburCobb

    WillburCobb I am the pull out king Banned Account on Hold 5+ Year Member

    It was my strongest letter actually, and he's a really nice guy. He just expects people to ask for LORs in person which is why he ignores those e-mails. He'd forgotten about my letter, and me asking in person, and thought the e-mails I had sent him were simply me just asking for a LOR, not reminding him. When I finally caught-up with him and he figured out the situation he got really red and apologized profusely. After that, he sent me a draft of the letter to read within a few hours.
  10. jm192

    jm192 7+ Year Member

    Aug 4, 2009
    Never Neverland
    I'd just keep going to the office until I caught him.

    If school is out, and he doesn't have summer obligations--maybe he's on vacation or something. See if someone in the dept has an idea of what the situation is and/or how to get in touch with him.

    Also, start thinking about another letter writer.
  11. Mornhavon

    Mornhavon Hello there 2+ Year Member

    Aug 2, 2010
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2014
  12. MaybeDr

    MaybeDr 2+ Year Member

    Apr 7, 2014
    What I always do if I can't figure when their going to be in their office is A. show up at the end of one of their classes or B. Google what grad students their involved with and go to their lab or their section and ask them when their usually around.
  13. Gauss44

    Gauss44 5+ Year Member

    Oct 28, 2012
    I know you said you went to his office once. I would keep trying and keep going until I caught him in person, and maybe leave a voice message too. Nothing wrong with being persistent, especially if you are also pleasant and concise.
  14. TurkDorian

    TurkDorian 2+ Year Member

    Jul 21, 2013
    Thanks for the advice guys! I'll keep going to their office!

    The idea of contacting grad students is pretty smart too! I might try that

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