Scattered Pieces

These are the words I held back

A Questionable Decision

Yesterday I received an email from one of the medical schools I applied to, the Ateneo School of Medicine and Public Health (ASMPH). I was able to qualify for the interview phase, but was unable to make it to the final list of accepted applicants for the coming school year.

I immediately made a letter of appeal for reconsideration after seeking advice from a current professor in the ASMPH. I submitted the letter to the Admissions Office on March 13, 2017 and I regularly called their hotline to get updates. I was informed that decisions on appeals will be emailed personally as soon as the committee has a decision hopefully by April 5. On my second call, I was told that they will email decisions to those who appealed (not accepted) and to those who were waitlisted (accepted, but placed on the waiting list) at the same time.

Personal take: ASMPH, shouldn’t you be approaching the waitlisted applicants first since they are technically accepted? Why consider granting admission to those who appealed and to those who were waitlisted at the same time? Isn’t that unfair to the waitlisted applicants?

Fast forward to April 7, the day I got my rejected letter of appeal. Here is the email from the admissions office stating why they cannot grant me admission:AdmissionsEmail

ASMPH rejected my appeal for reconsideration primarily because of my overall admission score not meeting their cut-off. Well, ASMPH, isn’t that the point of making an appeal for reconsideration? Applicants present new information that the admissions committee has yet to know about when writing an appeal. Usually these kinds of information are ones that could provide an angle as to why the applicant ended up with his/her credentials. Anything that was not typed on the application form that the applicant believes can help overturn a previously made decision. If the appeal is successful, rejected applicants are moved into the waitlisted pool of applicants.

When the ASMPH mentioned the overall admission score, it appears that their admissions committee never took into account the contents of my letter. The overall admission score is already a given and that is what probably led to me not making the final list of accepted applicants in the first place. This is exactly what I am appealing about and yet you’re using this as the reason as to why my appeal for reconsideration has been rejected.

Then there’s that reason about the slots being filled up by the accepted applicants. If all the slots were filled up by the accepted applicants, then why are you still entertaining appeals from rejected applicants?

I talked with my friends about this and I got some interesting information. My friend, Anja, has a friend who was previously waitlisted. I found out about this through her tweet before talking to her about it.


My friend, Anja, confirming that her friend Ysa got waitlisted


Anja tweeting about her friend, Ysa, finally making it to ASMPH after being waitlisted.


Based on my friend’s tweet, it’s safe to say Ysa was informed about the change in her status from waitlisted to accepted by April 3 4:10pm

At this point, I will no longer put names of my friends in order to protect my identity. I decided to talk to my other friend who was also waitlisted and congratulate her since I was assuming that the waitlisted applicants should have been approached by now. It turns out, however, that it’s not so.


My other friend telling me she got waitlisted in ASMPH


Her email from ASMPH


April 7 5:15pm and she hasn’t received an email from ASMPH about the update on her waitlisted status

Lastly, another friend, let’s name this friend as TS, texted me that she has a friend who received an email from the ASMPH the same day I did. Her friend was also rejected but is now given a chance to be admitted to the ASMPH.


TS telling me her friend, who was originally rejected, sent an appeal and got moved to the waitlist pool


And she says her friend just got an email from ASMPH the same day I did.

With these images, it is clear that something is wrong in the ASMPH’s system of taking in applicants for the next school year. I can accept the rejection on my appeal as I know my credentials aren’t exactly excellent, but this whole experience leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. The admissions committee could have just said that a second look at my credentials was done with respect to the contents of my letter of appeal. They could have just said that they still can’t grant me admission without the reasons they stated in the letter because it really doesn’t make sense.

The ASMPH is my dream medical school and I am positive others have the same sentiment and are also going to great measures to get into the ASMPH. However, with the latest developments, I can’t help but feel disheartened by the ASMPH’s recent actions.

Sorry to say this, ASMPH, but I think I deserved better than this.



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