In response to the looming severe weather threat of Hurricane Sandy, the Office of Admissions has extended the deadline for early decision applications to 11:59 p.m. on Nov. 6.
Applications were previously due on Nov. 1.
The Office of Admissions notified all students of the change Sunday evening by sending an email to those who had started an application to Penn on the Common Application’s website. The Office also reached out to high school college counselors and posted an update on its website.
Because of concerns that school officials sending in forms might be out of the office this week, the extension will apply to “both applicants and school officials for all candidates regardless of their place of residency,” according to an Office of Admissions email.
A number of other schools also extended their early application deadlines today because of Hurricane Sandy. Yale and Columbia universities extended their deadlines to Nov. 5, Duke University pushed its back to Nov. 4 and Harvard University posted a message on its website saying that if students are unable to meet the Nov. 1 deadline, the school would be “happy to accept late applications and support materials.”
“The largest impact was really going to be on school officials,” Dean of Admissions Eric Furda said. “But we need to anticipate people worried about power outages. You can’t press submit if the power is out.”
Penn extended its deadline for early decision applications because of a snowstorm last year as well.
Several students were pleased about the extension.
“I was actually really excited,” said Vishal Bailoor, an early applicant from Edison, N.J., near where Sandy is projected to make landfall Monday. “I just wanted to make sure it’s perfect. And this just gives me more time to fine tune it.”
Even those who will not be directly affected by storm say they will try to use the extra few days to their advantage.
“Before I realized that the deadline was extended, I was kind of stressed,” said Justin Song, an early decision applicant from San Jose, Calif. “I wanted to revise [my essays] a little bit more before sending them in. Now that the deadline is extended, I feel like I have a lot more freedom to add on to the essays that I hadn’t been able to before.”
Others were concerned that power outages might have prevented them from submitting their applications before Nov. 1.
“I knew that I could finish the application, but my biggest worry was that I might not be able to send the application in on time,” said Cameron Wong, who is applying from Darien, Conn. “It’s a relief to know that we have that extra security to make sure that everything gets sent out before the deadline.”
Students who registered for campus tours were also notified that tours and information sessions are canceled through Wednesday, Furda said. The Office of Admissions also coordinated with Student Financial Services to ensure early decision applicants would be able to apply for financial aid. The deadline for submitting financial information will remain Nov. 15.