I had the chance to talk to two professors last week regarding admission to the PhD program. After I was done, I was told that I would be invited for an on-site interview, if admitted.

After not receiving any feedback from the school, I emailed them and found out that I was not invited to the interviews on the campus. Now they're just telling me to wait and I may be invited for another visit in the future.

This is a problem for me as I need to start looking for funds in another programs that I have been already admitted to (The one I am waiting on is my first choice).

What would be the best approach to handle this kind of situation?


  • 7
    Start looking for funds in another program.
    – Raydot
    Feb 17, 2017 at 18:08
  • 2
    I'm a bit confused about what you were told - they said you'd be invited to an on-site if you were admitted? This suggests that the on-site is something like a "visit day" for admitted students, and if you weren't invited then you are effectively on something like a "wait list" where you'll only potentially be offered a spot if other people decline their offer. But some programs do on-site interviews before admission offers at all, which would mean you didn't make their first short list. Either way, as you don't have an offer of admission you should certainly pursue other options.
    – BrianH
    Feb 17, 2017 at 18:14
  • They said decisions haven't been made for me yet. The phone interview was pretty much to determine who to invite for on-site interviews, or so I was told.
    – HereWeGo17
    Feb 17, 2017 at 18:19
  • If you get confusing or mixed messages, it would probably be helpful to phone, if possible, or write another email in which you describe your confusion, asking for clarification. It couldn't hurt to explain that this program is your first choice, and that you feel some moral obligation to let some other programs you have been accepted into know what your intentions are. Feb 18, 2017 at 3:59
  • Assume you haven't been admitted yet, and act accordingly.
    – JeffE
    Feb 20, 2017 at 2:57

1 Answer 1


Exactly what they told you to do: wait. If you're at the point where you'll need to make an irreversible decision (like accepting an offer somewhere else), you can tell them that, and see if they react, but it doesn't seem to likely to me. Otherwise, what's wrong with waiting?

  • The professor that I'm currently interning under have asked me what my plan will be for the summer and it would be in the best interest for me to reply as soon as possible since I have the possibility of studying under his guidance. But this is also not guaranteed. Just a lot of unknowns that's throwing me off currently.
    – HereWeGo17
    Feb 17, 2017 at 18:40
  • @AlwaysTrying44 Well, why are you asking us rather than that professor? You aren't even explaining your situation clearly, so we really can't help you (what's the relationship between the summer and these Ph.D. programs?). You can presumably explain the uncertainties of the situation to this professor, and either s/he will let the summer plans wait for a little while, or you'll have to make a decision. Feb 17, 2017 at 18:51
  • Yeah, that's probably the best thing that I can do as of now. Thank you.
    – HereWeGo17
    Feb 17, 2017 at 19:13

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