Thursday Weisblog: Database error causes school daze

ucsd2A total of 45,889 students applied to UC San Diego, a school with pretty high academic standards. Earlier this month, the school began their process of dwindling down that list to the 17,000 they would accept.

When the time came to send out acceptance e-mails for the fall semester to the lucky ones, let’s just say a small glitch happened that had far-reaching consequences.

The school’s communications office says that the acceptance e-mail was inadvertently sent to ALL 45,889 students. They were even invited to the on-campus orientation. (Pause for a moment and think about how many students excitedly called their parents, friends and other loved ones to tell them the “good news,” only to find out later in the day that a horrible mistake had been made.)

About two hours later, a retraction e-mail went out, breaking the bad news to the 28,889 who didn’t make the cut.

Assistant Vice Chancellor Mae W. Brown put it into perspective: “No member of this department is more acutely aware of the emotional roller-coaster this could cause for our applicants … We realize the incredible pain receiving this false encouragement caused. It was not our intent.”

I feel bad for everyone involved. Obviously, the university made an honest mistake … simply accessing the wrong database, according to Brown. It could have happened to anyone. Really.

Let’s hope that the 28K-plus students find a good place to go to school despite their setback. I wish them well.


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