Oxford college apologises after accidentally circulating rejection letters

Image credit: Andrew Shiva

In its rejection emails to unsuccessful applicants Hertford College, Oxford accidentally included the names of all those rejected. This was by way of attached letters, which were addressed to 200 unsuccessful applicants.

The emails were sent out to applicants on 11 January.

An inadvertent breach of privacy, these letters included home addresses, as well as names and subjects for which the rejected applicants had applied. These were from the college’s senior tutor Charlotte Brewer.

The error received global attention due to the various nationalities of the candidates involved. The college quickly realised its mistake, however, and unsuccessful applicants were sent another email. This email apologised and asked them to delete the original email.

One parent said to the Telegraph: “It is disappointing enough to be rejected after three days of intensive interviews without having your rejection letter splashed all over the world to all and sundry.”

Hertford College has since apologised for the mistake, saying it would review its current procedures.

The Principal, Will Hutton, who is also a writer, broadcaster and political economist released a statement saying: “We would like to apologise to all applicants affected by this mistake for any distress caused. We are now taking steps to make sure this type of error involving personal information does not happen again.”

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