I, and I'm sure all the regular readers of the Door, send sympathy to aspiring economist Chris Silvey. Chris is suffering from an awful screw-up, courtesy of Higher Education:

I sent my applications and all supporting materials for econ PhD admission in the beginning of December. I found out last week that none...I REPEAT ...none of the schools have recvd transcripts from one of my undergrad schools (Cal State Northridge, aka CSUN). When I contacted CSUN last week they said that they sent the transcript on Dec. 6 (almost a month after I requested and paid for them). As of yesterday UCLA, about 20 miles from CSUN, had not recv'd my transcripts. So as of now I have missed many FinAid deadlines. I called CSUN again yesterday and got the financial director in Admissions and Records at CSUN and she finally tracked down what had happened with my transcripts. They were never sent! The school was replacing software and my transcripts were being held for Fall 2003 grades...nevermind the fact that I haven't attended CSUN for two years. Long story short, they sent my transcripts Jan.22 and are sending me a letter on CSUN letterhead apologizing for, and explaining, their mistake. Now I have to contact all of the graduate secretaries at all of the schools I applied to and explain what happened. I only pray that this set circumstance, out of my control, wasn't an easy way for the schools to weed out an application to reduce the substantial pile in front of them at the admissions committee. I worked hard for years in school, and spent a lot of time and money setting myself up to have a good chance of admission with funding at top schools...and now fate has dealt me a poor poker hand. I hope I can plays the cards I have been dealt with skill and still win. But inside I am steaming with anger.