University of Maryland Baltimore County a Cheater. Really?

Raghuram Sukumar Admission 23 Comments

Interesting comment posted in the Facebook Page about University of Maryland Baltimore County and how they handled graduate school application arrived after deadline.

I have applied for Spring 2011 in the last week of September.Deadline mentioned in their web site was June 1 2010.Hence I called the university first ,they told me that university has extended the deadline up to October 1st.

Today,When I emailed them regarding checking Application Status,I got an astounding reply from them saying that my application is considered for Fall 2011 instead of Spring 2011 because I have applied too late after the deadline.

I have recorded the conversation in my mobile phone in which UMBC’s representative is explaining me that their university has extended the deadline from June 1 to October 1st and I need to apply early.

What should I do? I have already sent them email and they have forwarded my query to admission committee asking them to consider my application for Spring 2011. This shows the reputation of the University,how careless they are in their profession.

University and Reputation

First, lets talk about university and its reputation. You cannot say they university has bad reputation, just because your graduate school application was mishandled. It was a mistake made by their admission department (or maybe single employee) and looks like they accepted the mistake and working to reslove the issue by reconsidering your application for Spring 2011.

Universities handle 1000’s of application per year and few mistakes happen. There is nothing you can do about it. If you feel that university has bad reputation, why are you still trying to get admission with them?

Mature as a Student

I posted an article few months back explaining why foreign students in US Universities are unique. Life ain’t easy and you have to face situations like this and several other new scenarios. You have just reached 25% of your milestone to get degree from USA. Still you got long ways to go, including

  • Getting Admission
  • Visa interview, stamping
  • Travel
  • Learning to live a new life in new world
  • Studying

Learn to face disappointments and get ready to face life again. If you feel cheated, frustrated, make up your mind to face more challenges.

Phone Recording

It’s ill-legal to record phone conversations without letting other person know that you are recording it. When you are in US and try to record phone conversation without other person knowing it, you are going to get in trouble.


  1. sir/ma

    pls, i wish to know the next admission stream into 2011 academic session @ university of maryland

  2. Dear HSB,

    I would like to write an article in your blog about problems faced by internationals in USA (students and employees). Guide me, how can I post it on your blog?

  3. You guys think this is unfair!!! Then let me tell you story of some of my friends who are studying here. Some of my friends got scholarship/funding for MS. Due to recession many universities are out of funds. So, they took their scholarship back.

    Now, my friends are in middle of their degree (2nd/ 3rd semester) and they dont have any FUNDING. Legally, they cannot work more than 20hrs/week.

    So, they earn about $500-$700 per MONTH.

    Now rent+glossary+other expenses are $600 per month.

    They hardly save $50-$100 per month.

    (this adds up to $600 per semester) .

    Their semester fees is $7000.

    Now you tell me what should they do?

    They do not have money………

    They cant SUE university for this………

    They cannot leave their degree in between……?

    And you think problem of this girl/boy is that big???

    Moreover, there are no jobs in USA. Thousands of employees got laid of here in America. Some of them were earning $10,000 per month.Even US citizens are unemployed. Recession hit very badly in USA as compare to India.

    Some of my friends got graduated and went back to India(they were unable to find jobs). You can stay in USA for only 3 Months after completing your degree and if you are unable to find a job in that limited period, then you have to go back to you country.

    There are lots of problems in Studying in America. Do not think that now if recession is over everything is ok. It takes some time to bounce back from such events and America has not recovered completely yet.

  4. the problem is with us why we are crawling for US education there are many other countries if the same incident happens with a forigen student in india he will never come to india……
    yes i agree that iam also one among who crawlled for usa education but now i dont. let the unuversity give me a i20 i will not beg him because if he admits me i will pay the university lot of mony in the form of out state fee….more than the amount that an American pays..why should i beg them?????

  5. texas a&m kingsvilli also did same thing with me… i applied for spring 2011….. i included everything in the package that i have sent to the university.things i included were 2sets of transcripts,s.o.p,recomendation letters,passport coppy,affidevate finacial statement,bank statement and some other certificates etc. i even calld them and told them that i have included so and so materials and anything else is ther kya? they said thats enough….. u know wat after the pakage reached the university they sent me an email stating i did not send my trancripts and passport copy financial statement and s.o.p.

    i was sending many emails i calld them and told that i sent everything i even told them the name of the person who received my package…. they said ok ok dont worry if u have sent then dont worry no problum……and now 4 days bak them sent me an email statin that "we are considering ur application for the next intake please let us know about ur openion" the reason they told me was that my application was incomplete and above all are pending….it was sooo irritating for me. it is clear that university made some mistake….

    ok every university recives 1000,s of application thats fine but in that 1000 iam also one and i also paid the application fee to the unversity.. so they should take care of the students application.

    there are some universities like dis…..

    i was so irritated that i called the university immediatly and gave them a to z.

  6. How can even you consider this as cheating? Nobody has lost money or time/ The applicant is getting considered for the same term….

  7. The student should definitely take the issue with administartion with proper proof of credentials of what and when it happened.I know how dificult it is when this happen like this.There are also things that will put you in trouble (recording conversation)is ill-legal in US.It might be nothing in India.With good proof in hand you can definitely approach office of external affairs

  8. I completely agree with Erika on this one.Even though HSB has doled out countless advice articles on various issues concerning student life , especially for foreign students like us, in the US, I found the tone of this article very "US pleasing" in a way.I agree, life has its ups and downs and some which just cant be dealt with .But to completely sideline a fault based on it being a mere 'mistake ' and disregarrding all the effort put in by a student is quite ridiculous.I have been through the entire rigmarole of applying, taking tests, applying for a visa, getting rejected, reapplying and have come to realise one thing.WE NEED TO STOP PUTTING THE US AND ITS INSTITUTIONS ONA APEDESTAL.If they have faultered a simple" We apologise and are looking into the matter " will not suffice.Does anyone here understand the amount of mental trauma someone has to undergo durin the entire admissions process.And when the outcome is as casual as "We will look into it" , it can get very very frustrating.

    And why shouldnt the reputation of the University be questioned here.For me the reputation of a University is as good as it treats me.If there are a billion applications per semster, then increase your task force.To state that the inconsistencies should be acceptable factoring in the number of applications received is looking for a very sorry excuse.

    "A diploma holder should understand" has been used very often in your solution.I could hold an M.phil and still blame them for shoddy work.If he recorded the conversation, it may have been wrong.But thats not what we're talking about here is it.

    Right down from admissions to getting the visa, I have witnessed countless incidents of the sheer lack of ownership on the universities behalf.The buck is passed around till we just stop caring.

    And yes, Question..What if a University like Delhi University for instance behaved in such a manner with other foreign students.I know it would've been unacceptable to every one of us.

    I for one am appaled and infuriated by this sort of attitude of putting foriegn universities ona a pedestal Again, the reputation of a univeristy is as good as it treats me.Be it an Ivy league or an IIM.

  9. The most interesting article i have ever read on HSB…sounds like a case..cheating, phone recording, persuasion

  10. Student is right in his case. Recording the telephone is less of crime than what happened to him. We can always hold student responsible for such mishaps. University Adcoms should also have some sense of discipline. The only purpose of asking student to apply early and that too spring seems to extract admission fees $$ from him. This is totally wrong.

    1. I am in USA from past 2 years, here rules are very strict UNLIKE India. When something is considered as ILLEGAL then it is ILLEGAL, they do not take any exceptions( your case). You have recorded that conversation without that person's permission and it is a crime. You cannot present that as an evidence, if you will, they will rather file a case against you which might further prevent you to enter in USA EVER.

      Here, even if you call customer support representative, they will first mention that "your call may be recorded for quality assurance purposes" etc and then they are going to record it otherwise they cant record it. Dear friend, Americans can do anything here but we cannot because they are citizen and we are internationals.

      What you can do: You can ask them for money back if they dont give it back to you, you cant do anything about it.

      You know there are a lots of drawbacks of studying in other country consider this among one of them. Trust me when you would study in USA you will have to compromise a lot here. For internationals like us life is not that simple like that is in India. Most of students think that studying abroad is same like studying in some other state in India but it is completely different.

      I would like to add one more thing BALTIMORE, is not a good place to live. It is highly rated crime area.

      So, whatever action you are going to take, think carefully and logically. Do not listen to other people here, HSB has given you very good advise. Rest is up to you. All the best.

  11. Happy School Blog–No Name Blogger,

    All the above comment is valid. But, the tone of this article falls in the category of militant, disciplinary preaching. If an employee of a higher institution informs an admitting student that the application deadline was extended, then hold the employee responsible for his/her uninformed, ignorant mistake, not the incoming students. Do not preach against a diploma holding person who will spend money at an institution. She didn't make the mistake; actually, she will spend money in that institution that will make profit on her. It is cheating when when someone exchanges goods, information, etc and does not live up to his/her institutional promise. In this case the admission officer was not disciplined enough.

    Do we instill militant verbal discipline, with political correctness, or, we teach students to learn ethical academic discipline? The difference is extreme.

    1. 1) Diploma degree holding student should be mature enough to realize that university is reconsidering the application. So, problem is solved. Calling university a cheater after univ have admitted to their mistake is NOT acceptable.
      2) Posting comment like – What should I do now? Diploma holding person should know, that next step is wait to hear about admission decision.
      3) ANY diploma holding person will not call an institution cheater and question the reputation, when they intend to study there.

      1. @HSB the same is case with University of Mississippi and University of Rhode Island. I checked their websites, it clearly mentioned they are taking Spring 2011 admissions for M.S in Pharmaceutics. I applied, and when I didn't get any response, I contacted them. Now they are saying they are not taking students for Spring 2011 at all. How fair is this?

        1. If university doesn't have enough budget, then can cancel the courses or admission. With economy still recovering, things like this happens.

          1. Then they should have mentioned it in the website that they are not taking students for this semester. If I had completely relied on these universities, I would have wasted 1 year.

          2. HSB is giving you replies you might not like but which are the truth/reality.

            Also to remember you are not the unique being applying to a university-even as you are applying another hundred sometimes hundreds are also sending in their applications.So if you are keen keep the communication channels open.

            I am witness to attitudes like -hey they need students so I will take my time and make them wait

            Unlike in India-no students applying and they will cancel a prog or change it


      2. HSB–I cannot address an institutional voice dear, so you remain HSB:

        The tone of this institutional blog, you who is typing without an actual identity, or, have a veiled identity but instructing the masses with a judicial institutional voice of a police, goes even further.

        1) An institutional blogger should be ethical to weigh the institution and individual's interest on par. The problem is that institutions don't have feelings only individuals do. So, is the individual immature because she feels cheated in her effort and time after application filled out, fees paid, FAFSA filled out, recommendation letter sent by professors, essays completed, and all these are misplaced by a simple mistake? Is she entitled to her opinion, specifically can her voice be filled with uncertainty, "what should I do" here showing emotions? Is she immature?

        Even though in 1) "the problem is solved" as HSB institutional blogger writes the problem is not solved yet. The school's committees are working on the problem which can take up to one, two, three weeks, depending on the specific bureaucratic colleges are involved, holding the applicant uncertain.

        2) Isn't it frustrating when everything is planned, someone found a job–in this unstable economy–and that needs to be rearranged? Institutional procedures will not remedy a lost job.

        Only a person supported by an institution like HSB can dole out reprimands like 3) "ANY diploma holding person will not call an institution cheater and question the reputation, when they intend to study there." Instead of policing someone, why don't you HSB, institutional blogger, give an advice to this student that she has her right to appeal to the admission office? Furthermore, why not criticize the institution where she/he will study? Because UMBC is a higher education institution can have only an immaculate reputation? That's irrational! Do we need to believe in institutions, or, we believe in ideas or ideologies, religions, and cultures? The institution should earn its reputation that people might respect over-and-over again. HSB, are you recruiting students to the military or remedy conflicts in this blog about schools? Civilians–students, police, and the military have different functions, their voice varies according to their function in society. People need to be respected not only institutions reputations.

        UMBC did cheat on this student's expectation, in her time invested planning; the bureaucrats messed up her application. The person who made a mistake, or the admission office supervisor should apologize to this applicant. They are responsible wasting her time and effort. Maybe this way the application process will earn a good reputation that serves the public with fairness with a human voice and face.

        I expected from Happy School Blog to provide a forum using informal tone discussing serious and not so serious contents about schools. It seems this blog supervisor HSB cannot live up to its public expectation!

        1. Blog = Personal journal and thats the way I'm going to keep it. What I write here is my view/opinion and readers can form their opinion. If you think, HSB didn't live upto the expectation, that is totally fine with me and that's your opinion and I respect that. I would have given full support to the student, if the university said – thats our mistake and sorry we cannot do anything about it.

          I agree that it will be frustrating when you have spent all time and effort to face disappointment. You know what, that's life and one has to learn to live with that.

          1. It is in the best interest of a student to apply early rather getting into all this issues.

            Rather than blaming a particular univ like UMBC which has a good reputation. If at all if any1 is at fault.. it is the admission committee.. so retrict to ur comment to that extent rather than blaming UMBC on the whole!..

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