University Apologizes For Telling The Wrong Students They'd Been Accepted

Apology, accepted?

It's never a good thing when the follow up to "Congratulations!" is "Just kidding, sorry."

As in, "Congratulations, you've been accepted to the University at Buffalo," which is roughly the same message the university emailed to more than 5,000 high school students last week, then awkwardly recanted hours later after realizing they'd accidentally emailed the wrong list of students.

In a statement released Friday, administrators at the university of around 30,000 students in upstate New York acknowledged the school sent acceptance letters earlier that week to around 5,100 applicants using "an incorrect email list."

Muddying the waters further, the school said it's still in the process of reviewing applications, meaning some of accepted-but-not-really students have really been accepted, while others have not.

Buffalo Bulls gear for sale on the concourse at UB Stadium on September 12, 2014 in Buffalo, New York.
Buffalo Bulls gear for sale on the concourse at UB Stadium on September 12, 2014 in Buffalo, New York.

The school said it contacted recipients "three to four hours" after realizing the mistake, and apologized for the extra stress it may have created during the already tense time of college admissions season.

University spokesman John Contrada told NBC the school plans to accept around 5,400 students from an applicant pool of more than 25,000.

These sort of admissions mistakes happen more often than you'd expect.

In 2014 alone, Carnegie Melon wrongfully notified 800 applicants they'd been admitted to the school's master's program in computer science; Johns Hopkins did the same with an additional 294 students.

The University at Buffalo isn't even the largest offender. According to this short history of admissions snafus compiled by Time, that embarrassing honor goes to the University of California, San Diego, which mistakenly emailed acceptance letters to 28,000 students in 2009, only to deny them with a second email hours later.



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