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Super Mega Hella-Blizzard 2009

Posted by on Tuesday, January 20, 2009 in Admissions Committee, Application Process, Balance, Blair School of Music, Commons, Early Decision, Freshman Commons, Music, Nashville.

It snowed a lot by Nashville standards yesterday, nearly a complete dusting actually. The more than 500 prospective students and families visiting Vanderbilt for yesterday’s Black & Gold Days got a wonderful show. Nashville doesn’t do snow really. Everyone outside of the South jokes about grocery stores having runs on bread, milk, and candles when it snows and it is absolutely true – Southerners go a little nutty when frozen precip starts swirling, particularly when behind the wheel. Still, I ardently maintain that nobody drives well on snow, Tennesseans are just honest about it.  A blizzard of another kind is winding down at 2305 West End Ave at the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. During the height of the days surrounding our January 3rd application deadlines, our operations staff was handling an avalanche of mail. On January 5th, the first business day after the deadline, we received 30 bins of mail. Each day that following week brought an additional 10 bins of materials to our office. What’s impressive is how our operations staff, running double shifts late into the evening and working Saturdays, was able to keep pace with that kind of inflow, and are now caught up. Somewhere towards the middle of this week, applicants for whom we are still missing some items will get a letter in the mail detailing what we need (we have sent out numerous rounds of emails).
At the height of its volume, our office received 30 full mail bins in one day.

Here’s some calendar items that are going on behind the scenes in our office and at VU:

The essential cool things you need to know about the famed music scene in Nashville:

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  • Hillary

    January 20th, 2009

    I’ve received nothing, from both e-mail and snail mail, yet. Does this mean you have all my stuff? Or should I have gotten an e-mail by now saying that my application IS complete, and therefore should expect a letter of incomplete application status soon?

  • Thom

    January 21st, 2009

    You will get a notice either way > either an email and/or letter if we’re still missing items, or a postcard indicating that your application is complete. You can always call our office to confirm the receipt of your items: 800-288-0432 or email us at

  • Hillary

    January 23rd, 2009

    Hi Thom, I was reading through someone’s (their username was “admin”) old November 2007 post that revealed just about everything that goes on during an admissions committee.
    But I have a question regarding the essay. Let’s just say if you were my regional admissions counselor (since you aren’t because you don’t have FL) and you thought my essay was great. Would you just present it to the committee saying “she wrote a great essay”? Or would the whole committee actually read it? For me, my essay means the world to me and I’d just hope more than just my admissions counselor can read it (I hope that didn’t come off as pretentious. I didn’t mean it to be. I just spent hours upon hours working it, forcing myself to write the best thing I’ve ever written).
    Post Scriptum: Do you know if the number of applicants this year will be posted somewhat soon? Or can you not post it until after all decisions have been made? I’m just curious as to how the recession has affected Vandy applicants.

  • Thom

    January 25th, 2009

    Hi Hillary,

    Usually in committee there isn’t time for the committee to actually read the essay of the applicant. Usually, the territory manager will bring up the essay topic and what the essay “says” about the applicant in his or her presentation of the applicant. A well-written essay gives us a view into the mind of an applicant, and especially their personality, so it is quite important.

    In terms of application numbers, we do release them on the blog once everything has been accounted for.

    Thanks again,