The much-dreaded letter arrived:
"With sincere regret, I must report that the Committee on Admissions has completed its selection of the class entering in August 2009 and has not been able to offer you a place.
We are grateful to have received applications from so many students like you with excellent intellectual and personal qualities. This year, well over 5000 students applied for 165 places in the first year class at Harvard Medical School. With so many more talented and highly qualified candidates than we could admit, the Committee on Admissions faced a very difficult task."
Sometimes, the wait ends tragically.