Home / National News / NC Teen Writes Rejection Letter to Duke University's Rejection Letter


(DURHAM, N.C.) — Spring is here along with the angst of the college admissions process for high school seniors everywhere.

One North Carolina teenager decided to fight back with a rejection letter to the rejection letter she said she received from Duke University.

“Dear Duke University Admissions,” the letter written by 17-year-old Siobhan O’Dell begins. “Thank you for the rejection letter of March 26, 2015. After careful consideration, I regret to inform you that I am unable to accept your refusal to offer me admission into the Fall 2015 freshman class at Duke.”

“This year I have been fortunate enough to receive rejection letters from the best and brightest universities in the country. With a pool of letters so diverse and accomplished I was unable to accept reject letters I would have been able to only several years ago,” she continues.

The teenager ends the letter with: “Therefore I will be attending Duke University’s 2015 freshmen class. I look forward to seeing you then.”

O’Dell posted the letter on Tumblr, where it quickly drew the Internet’s attention and drew calls for Duke University to reconsider her application.

Unfortunately for O’Dell, going viral did not equal a spot in Duke’s freshman class. O’Dell also posted to Tumblr on Tuesday the response she says Duke officials sent to her rejection to the rejection email.

“I understand how disappointed you are that we were unable to offer you a space in our incoming class,” the note reads. “I want to be honest with you and let you know that it’s very rare that we learn something that leads us to change our decision. In the last 10 years we’ve received about 500 requests for a review…and changed the decision four times.”

Duke’s Dean of Undergraduate Admissions, Cristoph Guttentag, had no comment on O’Dell’s application when reached by ABC News.

The Durham, North Carolina-based school’s loss may be another college’s gain. O’Dell, who did not reply to ABC News, posted on her Instagram account that she has already been accepted to the University of South Carolina.
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