Quantcast
This forum made possible through the generous support of SDN members, donors, and sponsors. Thank you.

cafemocha

Full Member
Joined
Aug 12, 2020
Messages
39
Reaction score
41

Members don't see this ad.
I know that there are a lot of these threads floating around on SDN, many of which I have read through, so thank you in advance to anyone who takes the time to read and give me feedback on this!

I have had a rather uneventful application cycle (complete to all schools mid-July to early August, 1 II turned WL to my state school, 6 pre-II Rs, nothing from 7 schools; admittedly naive and shot higher than I should have this cycle) and I have been considering sending updates on my activities to the schools that I haven't heard from and accept updates. My updates could/would include:
1. New employment as a Health Tech assisting with COVID-19 tests on my undergrad campus (Aug 2020-May 2021)
2. Remote involvement in my hospital volunteer role making Daily Information Sheets for elderly patients (in-person volunteering has been restricted for some time)
3. Additional semester of continued involvement as a peer tutor on my undergrad campus
4. Additional semester of continued involvement in my research lab on my undergrad campus
Additionally, I graduated in December from my undergrad university but I didn't think this was worthy of inclusion since it was noted on my AMCAS primary app and my GPA remains almost identical.

My main questions are: Are these worthy of inclusion in an update? COVID-19 threw a wrench into MANY of my activities so my hours were lower than I expected be before applying. How should I format the update letter? Many responses on similar forums say short and to-the-point is best, but I have also read many articles outside of SDN that say you should include connections to the school and demonstrate why these activities are meaningful/significant to your application. Lastly, should I include hours for these activities? I don't want to seem like I'm trying to box-check by getting hours to play the numbers game, but 200+ additional hours in an activity is far more significant than 30.

Thank you in advance for reading through this long post, I truly appreciate all of your help! I would also be open to providing any information you may need if I left something out that would make a difference in your advice.
 

r2med

Full Member
Joined
Jun 24, 2020
Messages
1,115
Reaction score
1,342
Experts here will say that these won't move the needle, but what do you have to lose at this point?
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users
Joined
Sep 13, 2015
Messages
3,740
Reaction score
13,968
At this point in the cycle, and update like this just telegraphs that you aren't getting much traction.

I would hope for the best with your WL, but otherwise just plan to reapply with a better school list.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users

cafemocha

Full Member
Joined
Aug 12, 2020
Messages
39
Reaction score
41
Thank you to both of you for your honest replies!
Experts here will say that these won't move the needle, but what do you have to lose at this point?
This is what I was thinking as well, I would rather know that I gave them all of the information that I could (and that I was able to continue and add new experiences in the middle of a pandemic).

At this point in the cycle, and update like this just telegraphs that you aren't getting much traction.

I would hope for the best with your WL, but otherwise just plan to reapply with a better school list.
With all of the caution surrounding how projected hours are viewed vs completed hours, I decided to wait on writing an update letter until after I graduated in December and most of my activities were done/I had some solid hours for them. To your point, I was nervous that maybe it was a bit late in the game. Thank you for your advice; I've already started revising my application materials in preparation for bad news but I will hope for the best!
 
Last edited:

xffan624

Full Member
7+ Year Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2013
Messages
2,105
Reaction score
2,873
Thank you to both of you for your honest replies!

This is what I was thinking as well, I would rather know that I gave them all of the information that I could (and that I was able to continue and add new experiences in the middle of a pandemic).


With all of the caution surrounding how projected hours are viewed vs completed hours, I decided to wait until after I graduated in December and most of my activities were done/I had some solid hours for them. To your point, I was nervous that maybe it was a bit late in the game. Thank you for your advice; I've already started revising my application materials in preparation for bad news but I will hope for the best!

You were complete in December with schools or am I misinterpreting your post? If so, that is the single glaring issue that no update letter is going to fix.
 

cafemocha

Full Member
Joined
Aug 12, 2020
Messages
39
Reaction score
41
You were complete in December with schools or am I misinterpreting your post? If so, that is the single glaring issue that no update letter is going to fix.
I was complete to all of my schools in mid-July or early August. I graduated from my undergrad university this past December and that is when a lot of my ongoing extracurriculars were finished or had been in progress for a significant amount of time, so I was waiting until after my December graduation to send the update letter only. Sorry for the confusion but thank you for the clarifying question!

Edit: I clarified the post you were responding to!
 

Goro

Full Member
Lifetime Donor
10+ Year Member
Joined
Jun 11, 2010
Messages
69,570
Reaction score
108,490
Thank you to both of you for your honest replies!

This is what I was thinking as well, I would rather know that I gave them all of the information that I could (and that I was able to continue and add new experiences in the middle of a pandemic).


With all of the caution surrounding how projected hours are viewed vs completed hours, I decided to wait on writing an update letter until after I graduated in December and most of my activities were done/I had some solid hours for them. To your point, I was nervous that maybe it was a bit late in the game. Thank you for your advice; I've already started revising my application materials in preparation for bad news but I will hope for the best!
Just make sure that the schools actually accept updates and love letters. Not all do.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users
Top