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Grad school interview thank you note

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Grad school interview thank you note
June 28, 2019 Houseguest Thanks 1 comment

Nov 13, 2017 Thank you example to give to the interviewer after graduate or professional school interview.

A lot has changed in the job interview process over the past few years. It's not unusual to be asked to participate in a video interview, to provide links to your social media pages in order to demonstrate your personal brand, or to do some sample work on spec to prove that you're qualified for the job. One thing that hasn't changed, however, is the need to send a thank-you note to your interviewers to express your appreciation for the opportunity to meet with them.

The good news is that you can generally send your thank you note via email–a paper letter isn’t usually necessary.

The Benefits of Sending a Thank-You Email

A thank-you message via email has a couple of important advantages over the old-fashioned, paper-and-ink variety of a thank-you letter. For example, with an email, you can do more than remind your prospective employer of your qualities and skills–you can actually show them off by including a link to your online portfolio, LinkedIn account, or professional social networking profiles.

Another benefit of a thank-you email is that you can get your thank-you message out immediately, rather than having to wait for the postal service to deliver a letter. In fact, you can send and write your thank-you email on the same day.

This is crucial if you’ve just interviewed for a job in which the hiring manager will be making a quick decision. You want to send the letter when the interviewer’s impression of you is still sharp in his or her mind. You also want the interviewer to read the letter before making a hiring decision. This means that you should send the email message or letter within 24 hours of your interview.

Send One Email to Each Interviewer

What if you’re interviewed by several people? First of all, ask for a business card at the conclusion of the interview–that way you'll have the contact information for each thank-you email. Then, send email messages to each person you interviewed with.

What to Include in Your Email Message

In addition to thanking the person you interviewed with, your thank-you note should reinforce the fact that you want the job, so view this thank-you as a follow-up "sales" letter. In other words, restate why you want the job, what your qualifications are, how you might make significant contributions, and so on.

Your message is also the perfect opportunity to discuss anything of importance that your interviewer neglected to ask. For example, if you didn’t have a chance to explain why you thought that you would fit in well with the company culture, you might briefly state this in the email.

Finally, use your letter to address any issues and concerns that came up during the interview, including topics you neglected to answer as thoroughly as you might have wished. For instance, if you feel that you botched an interview question, you could explain your answer in more detail here.

Keep in mind, though, that the thank-you note should be brief and to-the-point. A couple of brief paragraphs are sufficient. Here are tips for writing a strong thank-you email.

Use a Professional Subject Line

In the subject line, provide just enough information about why you are sending the email. Include the phrase “thank you” and either your name or the title of the job you interviewed for (or both). Some examples of subject lines include:

  • Thank You–Firstname Lastname
  • Thank You–Job Title
  • Thank You–Firstname Lastname, Job Title
  • Thank You–Job Title, Firstname Lastname
  • Job Title, Firstname Lastname–Thank You

Keep It Brief

Keep your message concise. The interviewer will not want to read a very long thank-you email. Focus on saying “thank you” and briefly reiterating your interest in the position.

Proofread and Edit

Remember to proofread. Proofreading is just as important in email as it is in other forms of correspondence. Be sure to check spelling and grammar. Also, keep a copy in your "Out" mailbox or “cc:” yourself so you have a copy of each message you've sent.

Example of an Email Thank-You Letter to Send After a Job Interview

The example below will provide you with a template to use for your own thank-you email. Keep in mind that this sample is only to give you a sense of how to format your email and demonstrate what information should be included. You’ll need to tailor it to reflect your own circumstances.

Review More Examples

Thank-You Email Do's and Don'ts

There’s a lot of information in this article, so here’s a checklist of everything you should and should not do:

Do: 

  • Send your email right away—within 24 hours of the interview—to thank the hiring managers and confirm your interest. 
  • Include all your interviewers in the email or send separate emails to each person who spoke with you. Keep in mind that if you do the latter, your messages should vary somewhat, so that the recipients don't compare notes later and feel like they just got a chain email (as mentioned above, it’s a good idea to gather business cards, or make a note of the interviewers’ names during the meeting. This is to ensure that you know whom to address).
  • Include the name of the position in the subject line and the words "thank you." This will ensure that the hiring manager sees your response and knows that your email is important.
  • Remind the interviewer of your qualifications, making sure to mention any keywords in the original job listing (or those that came up during the interview itself).
  • Provide links to your online portfolios and other professional sites and networks.

Don't: 

  • Stalk your interviewers. Initiatives such as a thank-you email and a follow-up a week or so later are more than enough. Beyond that, you're not promoting yourself; you're stressing them out. Remember that your goal is not only to show the hiring managers that you’re qualified but to convince them that they want to work with you. Repeatedly hounding them with follow-up emails won’t build your case.
  • Send anything that makes you look bad. This includes personal social media profiles that contain unprofessional pictures or behavior. Err on the side of caution when determining this. You might see nothing wrong with a photo of you enjoying a margarita on a tropical vacation, but the hiring manager might feel differently.
  • Be too casual. No memes, internet acronyms, etc.
  • Send misspelled, grammatically incorrect emails, or anything that hasn't been proofread by a trusted friend. Even professional editors make mistakes when they try to work on their own. Get another set of eyeballs to look over your work before you hit "send."

By sending a thoughtfully expressed “thank-you” email immediately after your interview, you’ll affirm the positive impressions you made during your talk, keep your candidacy “top of mind” as final hiring decisions are made, and demonstrate that you have the good manners and proactive communications skills employers desire in their personnel.

Be sure to modify your email so each interviewer gets a unique thank-you message. They will know if you sent the same message to each of them.

Subject Line of the Message: Thank You–Assistant Account Executive Interview

Dear Mr./Ms. Last Name:

I enjoyed speaking with you today about the assistant account executive position at the Smith Agency. The job seems to be an excellent match for my skills and interests.

The creative approach to account management that you described confirmed my desire to work with you.

In addition to my enthusiasm, I will bring to the position strong writing skills, assertiveness, and the ability to encourage others to work cooperatively with the department.

I appreciate the time you took to interview me. I am very interested in working for you and look forward to hearing from you regarding this position.

Sincerely,

Your Name
Email Address
Address
City, State Zip Code
Phone Number
[LinkedIn URL]
[Website URL]

Has anyone had experience sending thank you notes after their grad school interview to the interviewers? I've seen a lot of sources say to do.

Interview Follow-Up: Thank You Notes

grad school interview thank you note

Job Interview Thank You Email (with Samples)

By Susan P. Joyce

A major benefit of emailed thank you notes is that they can be sent -- and received -- very quickly.

A traditional handwritten thank you will take at least one day to be delivered and, depending on the organization, may sit in the mail room or on someone's desk for several days before it is read.

Surveys by both CareerBuilder and Accountemps have indicated that an emailed thank you note is acceptable to most employers in the USA.

However, if the organization feels very "old school," consider sending a formal thank you via USPS (a.k.a. "snail mail") in an envelope with a stamp as a follow up to your emailed thank you.

Remember that employers will view your thank you notes as a "work sample" demonstrating the kind of employee you would be. So, focus on sending the most professional thank you notes that you can, with good spelling, grammar, and use of technology.

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Writing Your Thank You Message

Leave the TO: field empty until you have completed, spell checked, and proofread the message (or put your own address in that field until it is ready to be sent).

Adapt the text in this sample (below) to your circumstances, and customize it to each individual who interviewed you.

If you know the person who is receiving this message, you can be less formal, as in "Dear Mary" vs. "Dear Ms. Jones" -- but err on the side of being more formal rather than less formal when in doubt.

Don't make the mistake of sending exactly the same message to everyone who interviewed you at an employer! Emails are easy to share. Vary the details a bit, or use the second, more customizable sample below.

[More Interview Email Thank You Do's and Dont's.]

Sample Thank You Messages

Replace thetext below [in brackets] with whatever terms are appropriate for you and your situation. Send this very soon after the interview, preferably on the same day as the interview.

Simple Thank You Message Sample

This is a basic, simple thank you message.

Subject: Thank you for the [Job Title] interview on [date]

Dear [Mr./Ms. Last Name]:

Thank you very much for your time today [or yesterday or the date] to interview me for the position of [job title]. I appreciate the opportunity to learn more about this job, to meet you and [names of other interviewers], and to see your facility [or offices, location, whatever is appropriate].

As we discussed, I have [months or years] of experience with [technology, tools, or qualification(s) you have that seemed most important in the interview]. With my background and experience, I believe that I could become a contributor to your team very quickly.

I am excited about this opportunity to join [organization name]. Please do not hesitate to email or call me if you have any questions or need any additional information.

I look forward to hearing from you [whenever they said they would be in touch or in 10 days if they didn't give you a date].

Best regards,

[Your name]
[Your job title or tag line, like "eCommerce Customer Support Specialist"]
[LinkedIn Profile URL]
[Phone number -- not your work number if you are employed]

More Complex Thank You Message

Replace thetext below [in brackets] with whatever terms are appropriate for you and your situation.

Subject: Thank you for the [Job Title] interview on [date]

Dear [Mr./Ms. Last Name]:

Thank you very much for your time today [or yesterday or the date] to interview me for the position of [job title]. I appreciate the opportunity to learn more about this job, to meet you and [names of other interviewers], and to see your facility [or offices, location, whatever is appropriate].

[Reference anything you said that seemed important to the interviewer, like: As we discussed, I find the technology related to using cloud computing fascinating and an amazing opportunity for the future, but security is also a major concern. Keeping XYZ Company's information safe would be a top priority for the person in this job, and I would love to dig deeply into the protective technologies, as well as the threats, to avoid future problems.]

[If possible, reference any "connection" you may have made, like: I enjoyed finding someone else who attended XYZ College and also roots for the hockey team. Hope they make the NCAA Division finals next year!]

As we discussed, I have [months or years] of experience with [technology, tools, or qualification(s) you have that seemed most important in the interview]. With my background and experience, I believe that I could become a contributor to your team very quickly.

I am excited about this opportunity to join [organization name]. Please do not hesitate to email or call me if you have any questions or need any additional information.

I look forward to hearing from you [whenever they said they would be in touch or in 10 days if they didn't give you a date].

Best regards,

[Your name]
[Your job title or tag line, like "eCommerce Customer Support Specialist"]
[LinkedIn Profile URL]
[Phone number -- not your work number if you are employed]

[For more information: see Email Thank You Do's and Dont's and Guide to Interview Thank You Notes with more Interview Thank You Note Samples.]

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Staying in Touch After the Thank You's Are Sent

Hopefully, you will get an email in response to this message, but don't panic if you don't hear from them on their deadline. MUCH may be happening that has nothing to do with you at all.

Read 5 Absolute Must-Ask Questions for Your Next Job Interview to get the details you need about how their hiring process works so you have contacts and their guidlines.

If they said they would contact you in a week, DO reach outafter five business days to see what is happening if they have not contacted you when they said they would. If you forgot to ask when they would be contacting you after the interview, five business days is a sufficient gap to demonstrate that you are interested, but not a nuisance.

DO NOT contact them daily -- or even weekly -- for a decision.

DO move on with your job search. This opportunity may happen or it may not. Don't "pause" your job search until you know. Keep searching. Best case, you'll have a choice betweene two (or more) jobs to make. Worst case; you won't lose any momentum.

Bottom Line

It's easy to blow off thank you notes as trivial, but well-done thank you notes are a great way to differentiate yourself from other candidates. Take the time to follow the Email Thank You Do's and Dont's, and send your thank you notes very quickly. If you forgot to send immediate thank you messages, send them as soon as you can --better late than never! Good thank you notes demonstrate the high quality of your work, and all the characteristics you may claim, like: attention to detail, ability to communicate, comfort with technology, and knowledge about the job and the employer.

More About Interview Thank You Notes

[More: The Waiting Game After the Interview by recruiter Jeff Lipschultz and Job-Hunt's 2017 study, Job Seekers: What Happens After You Apply.]


About the author...

Online job search expert Susan P. Joyce has been observing the online job search world and teaching online job search skills since 1995. A veteran of the United States Marine Corps and a recent Visiting Scholar at the MIT Sloan School of Management, Susan is a two-time layoff “graduate” who has worked in human resources at Harvard University and in a compensation consulting firm. Since 1998, Susan has been editor and publisher of Job-Hunt.org. Follow Susan on Twitter at @jobhuntorg and on Facebook, LinkedIn.

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Contribution thank you note

8+ Thank You Note After Phone Interview – Free Sample, Example, Format Download!

grad school interview thank you note

Dear Ms. Richards,

Thank you for taking the time to interview me for the Research Intern position on Tuesday, July 12th. I am excited about the possibility of working with you at SR Inc. I know that my studies in economics, public policy, and advocacy, my passion for sustainability, and my experience at the US EPA and ECLC have prepared me for success in this position.

After learning more  about your organization and about the research I will undertake, I have become even more excited about the possibility of joining the team. Through my undergraduate work and volunteer experiences, I have developed my organizational and communication skills, along with the ability to work within a team or independently. I believe these skills will be assets  to your organization.

I am genuinely interested in this position and believe I would be a great addition to your team. If there is any further information you would find helpful in making a decision regarding my employment, please contact me. I look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely, Juan Torino


Many graduate schools interview applicants to find out more about their interests and determine Write your interviewer a thank-you note after the interview.

Whether to send thank-you notes

grad school interview thank you note

Graduate admissions interviews are formal conversations with a representative from the school that allows you to share your passion for the field, the story of your accomplishments, and your enthusiasm for the school. Not all schools require an interview, if they do or make one optional, you should prepare for it as though it were a job interview. We explore some best practices for preparing and how to take advantage of the opportunity. 

Preparing for your interview

  • Set yourself up for success with an interview time that works best for you. Consider at what points during the day you feel your best and most alert and try to schedule the interview then. If you’re able ahead of time, ask how long the interview will take so you can pace yourself when practicing and make sure your answers aren’t too long winded. Also ask who you’ll be interviewing with. Often it’s a representative from the school but it could include current graduate students or professors. If you’re scheduling the interview in person, see if you’re able to combine it with a campus visit so you’re able to get the most out of your experience and can bring your insights about the school into your interview. 
  • Research, research, research. You should be prepared to speak about specific reasons why this program and school are the best fit for you. Naming particular courses, professors, and offerings there will go a long way in demonstrating your interest and commitment. You can skip the more obvious questions; for instance, any information that you could easily find on their website for example.
  • Reflect on yourself, your accomplishments, and why this graduate school program is the right next step for you. Connect and think about the ways your story relates to and offers evidence of your commitment to the issue area and field, your strengths and skills, and your readiness for grad school.

Example grad school interview questions

Practice your answers. While you don’t want to sound rehearsed, it’s helpful to think about your responses and some questions you may be asked so you don’t feel flat footed during the interview. Here are some examples we pulled together to help get you started: 

  • Why did you choose to apply to our program?
  • In what ways have your previous experiences prepared you for graduate study in our program?
  • What are your research interests?
  • What are your career goals? How will this program help you achieve your goals?
  • How will you bring and contribute to our program?
  • What other schools are you considering? Why?

As you gear up for an interview of any kind, it can be easy to forget that it’s an opportunity for you to ask questions too. An interview is a unique opportunity to gain a better understanding of the academic and social culture of the school, the career trajectory you will have upon graduating, and whether the school simply feels like a good fit for you. While you can expect the majority of your time to be focused on questions for you, don’t be surprised if before the interview wraps up, your interviewer asks you if you have any questions for them. Here are some examples of questions you might ask to help spur your thinking: 

  • How long do most students take to graduate?
  • How closely do students work with faculty? 
  • Is it common for students and faculty to publish together?
  • Where are graduates of this program getting jobs? 
  • What is the student community like?

After the interview

Make sure to follow up after your interview with a thank you note. It’s a small step that can go a long way. This can be either in the form of a handwritten card or email but be sure you’re sending along in a timely fashion. 

Graduate school interviews can feel stressful but they are also a great chance for you to showcase yourself and your talents. It can also be incredibly informative time to ask questions about the school in person and assess whether it’s a place you can see yourself. As you prepare both your answers and questions, don’t forget to simply be yourself. While graduate schools are interested in your accomplishments and ensuring you’re ready for the rigor of grad school, they also want to learn more about you as a person and what you’ll bring to their program.

WATCH THE VIDEO ON THEME: Acing Grad School + Ph.D Interviews - 3 TIPS

Prepping for the Big DayAt the InterviewAfter the Interview Sending a hand- written thank you note or an email after the interview is a great way to remind the .

grad school interview thank you note
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