“I said it once before, but it bears repeating now…”*

By Mónia C. Estima, Senior Assistant Director for Music Admissions

Hi again, Juilliard prospective applicants! Before you kick back with your family, load up on carbs, and sink into a tryptophan-enhanced food-coma this Thursday, let’s consider what the looming December 1 deadline means for YOU!

On December 1 the online application closes right after 11:59 PM (Eastern) on Tuesday, December 1, 2009. If you try submitting it after that time, you won’t be able to because it will shut off! If you’re online at 12:02 AM on December 2 and try to submit, you’ll get an error message telling you the deadline has passed. Do yourself a big favor—don’t wait until December 1, but try to finish up and submit it by November 30, because if you go to submit it and there’s some kind of technical glitch, you still have the following business day to rectify matters. Once you’ve submitted the application, you’ll receive an automated e-mail confirmation that it was submitted. After we officially “acknowledge receipt” of your application, you’ll receive another automated e-mail letting you know. If you believe you clicked “Submit” but you didn’t receive any automated e-mails, guess what? You didn’t “Submit” your application. If you realize this AFTER December 1—you’ve missed the deadline! Your application is LATE!

What else can make you “late?”

  • If you chose to pay your application fee by check, and you mail the check out but it’s postmarked after December 1, that makes your application late.
  • If your major is pre-screened and your pre-screening materials are postmarked after December 1, that will also make you late.

It may seem a bit nit-picky, to view an applicant as being late just because the application fee or pre-screening materials were postmarked the day after the deadline, but think about the hundreds of applicants who raced to their local Post Offices (or walked 15 miles in the snow, shoeless) just to postmark their stuff on time. Out of fairness to them, Juilliard must stand firm on the December 1 postmark issue. Also, for your own peace of mind, be sure to send your check or pre-screening materials by some traceable method (and keep your receipts!). If the postmark on your package is illegible and we question its timeliness, you’ll then be able to provide proof that it was postmarked by the deadline. (BTW, we’re getting lots of phone calls asking where y’all should mail your stuff–the mailing instructions are bar #1 on the home page of your online application.)

What happens if you’re late?

Ah, dude…We can’t just say it’s O.K., no matter what happened to make you late. It’s not that we wouldn’t sympathize, it’s that pesky “fairness” issue, as Admissions is charged with maintaining the integrity of the application process, for ALL applicants.

Generally, in the case of late application fees (for those who opted to pay by check), we can approve your late application ONLY IF there are audition slots available after we’ve scheduled all on-time applicants. The situation is the same for late pre-screening materials; those applicants’ pre-screening may be considered ONLY IF there are audition slots available after all on-time applicants have been pre-screened. Keep in mind, however, some departments’ audition slots will fill up rather quickly and, in that event, regardless of why your check or pre-screening was late, we will not be able to approve your late materials.

I know, I’m being *such* a Debbie-Downer! It’s only ‘cause I want YOU to be the applicant who ISN’T sweating bullets on December 1, wondering if you’ll be able to get everything that needs doing DONE by 11:59 PM. Take advantage of the holiday weekend, keep a slice of pumpkin or apple or pecan pie by your side (‘cause pie helps, trust me on this one), and wrap everything up by November 30. You’ll be happy you did.

*The drumstick and smoked sausage stuffing of this blog comes from a pre-Turkey-Day blog I wrote last year. The blog’s title comes from The White Stripes’ “Fell In Love With A Girl.”