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Thread: What does it mean when a program asks me for a Skype meeting before the offer letter?

  1. #1
    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    What does it mean when a program asks me for a Skype meeting before the offer letter?

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    Hi all, I have been asked for a Skype call with a professor from a university where I applied to for an Ag/Applied Econ Ph.D. I have not yet received any offer letter from the program. This email came on February 28, which I think is a little later than when a lot of programs send offer letters. The meeting is NOT with the graduate coordinator but a professor whose research, they thought, I would be interested in. The email also highlights that I can ask any questions about the program.

    I am confused what this means. Does it mean the program generally does this to all the selected applicants to review if their interests and the research project match with each other? Does it mean the first round of offers were sent to the best candidates with a flexibility to choose any project and advisor they like after the program starts, and other remaining applicants are tried to be matched with other existing projects? Is this practice common?

    Look forward to hearing your thoughts.

    Thanks,
    Ssh

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    Re: What does it mean when a program asks me for a Skype meeting before the offer let

    Interviews are rare in econ, but are a standard part of the process in business PhD admissions. It is usually the final step before the committee makes their final decision and getting an interview is a very good sign. I think that it is probably similar for this particular ag econ program.

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    Re: What does it mean when a program asks me for a Skype meeting before the offer let

    Just ask them, politely.

    "It would be great to speak with [professor name]. Just to help me prepare, should I consider this an interview that is part of my application to the PhD program at [School Name]?"

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    Re: What does it mean when a program asks me for a Skype meeting before the offer let

    Hi! Thanks for the responses. I had the Skype call last week, and it seemed that the professor was not testing me much through the interview, but was explaining to me about their research and about the program, and telling me why I should join the program. They said I should hear back by this week. But it was interesting they called me before making a decision.

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