More than 5,000 prospective students mistakenly received an email notification, saying they had been accepted into the University at Buffalo.
The institution’s spokesman, John Contrada, said the email was sent to students whose applications had not been entirely reviewed. The school sent an email apologizing and explaining the mistake about 3 or 4 hours after the initial email, on April 13.
“We know that this can be a stressful time for prospective students and their families. University at Buffalo deeply regrets this unfortunate error in communication,” school officials said in a statement.
Diamond Williams, a senior from a high school in the Bronx, was one of the students who received the mistaken email that said, “Congratulations on your acceptance to the University at Buffalo!”
“I was ecstatic,” she told Buffalo News.
“I told my mom. I told my adviser. I told my sister.”
But the second email rapidly turned her excitement into crushing disappointment. Williams said she was too embarrassed to go back and tell her mom and others that she was not accepted to the university.
“She was upset. She was really upset. She went to bed early,” said Williams’s mother, Margaret Hamilton. “To say, ‘Oh, it’s a mistake,’ that’s like winning the lottery, then getting a letter saying, ‘Wrong ticket.'”
The school said it’s not the end for students hoping to gain admission. The applicants who received the email are still being considered for acceptance by the institution.
“It is important to note that the admissions applications of this group of students are still under review and the students are still being considered for acceptance by the university.”
Meanwhile, the university vowed it took “immediate steps to ensure that errors of this kind will not occur in the future.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.