So how could Vanderbilt receive my application when I didn't actually submit it? How often do situations like these arise?Vanderbilt wrote:
Dear students, (bcc to all applicants)
Thank you for your interest in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Vanderbilt University.
This email is to acknowledge that your application to the Vanderbilt University PhD Physics program has been received and is being reviewed.
My name is Don Pickert and I am the Administrative Assistant to the Physics & Astronomy Graduate Program Committee. (GPC)
If you should need any help with your application or have any questions regarding it, you may contact me.
If any items are missing from your application or if the GPC needs additional information from you, we will contact you.
If the end result is getting a free rejection letter in Vanderbilt's letterhead (if only because of missing recs), then so be it. I must admit, however, that, for Vanderbilt's physics dept to be willing to consider an incomplete application with recs missing, there must be at least one of the following at work:
- Desperate to take me (and likely with an UGF to boot) and then there had to be a few elements that caught their attention
- Have an otherwise incredibly shallow or poor applicant pool
- Not weigh recs much