The JD Admissions Office has been busy reading applications since October and we all have the paper cuts to prove it! Since we have a rolling admissions process at HLS, some students have already received a decision about their application, while students who completed their applications later in the cycle are still being reviewed (and of course, since our deadline isn’t until February 1st, some may still be working on submitting). This week we started sending notices to students whose files have been complete for several months, but who hadn’t heard from us yet. The notice that sometimes causes confusion this time of year is our “hold” category. I know many of you who have been put on hold have questions about what it means.
Hold status is our way of saying that although we’ve reviewed your application, we are not ready to make a final decision. We are going to hold on to your application and continue to review it in the context of the entire applicant pool. Or to put it even more simply, a hold notice is our way of telling you that we know it’s been a while since we last communicated with you, and we promise that your application has not fallen behind a file cabinet!
Every year a significant portion of our admitted 1Ls will have received a hold notice at some point in the admissions process. In other words, being on hold is a positive, not a negative – it means you are still in the running.
The two most commonly asked questions about hold are 1) When will I get a final decision from you? and 2) Is there something I can do to while I’m on hold?
We will finalize all our decisions (admit, deny or waitlist) for applicants by late spring and we will be in touch as soon as possible with that decision. As far as what you can do while you are on hold, please don’t feel that you must send us any new information at this time. However, if you have substantial updates to your application, this is a good time to submit them. For example, I strongly encourage college seniors to submit transcripts containing fall grades through LSAC. You can also send an update about an honor or award you’ve recently won, a new job, or anything else you think could materially impact your application. Additional letters of recommendation are not necessary. Please note that other than transcripts, which should go through LSAC, all other updates can be sent via email or snail mail to our office.
Hope that helps to clarify and now back to reading and interviewing!!