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My academic performance - Review my SAP appeal letter & critique

cisunos 1 / 1  
Aug 27, 2020   #1
please help me with a review of my letter for a sap appeal. its my first year of college and I did not do as well as i wanted because of the virus. sorry its quite long, i ramble when i'm anxious.

Satisfactory Academic Performance Appeal Letter

To whom it may concern,

I am a first generation college student, and I am the daughter of immigrants who worked very hard to support my endeavors. However, as I am sure you are aware, the COVID-19 pandemic has affected us all, and forced the college to shut down and transition to distance learning. I was not prepared at all for this transition, or even that the situation could happen in the first place. I was overwhelmed and not at all ready to work from home. I am a person who excels in a physical classroom setting, because of my mental health. I was diagnosed with social anxiety disorder and depression in 6th-7th grade, and surrounding myself in a social setting helps me to push my boundaries and improve on those aspects of my mental health. Since the college has shut down, I feel that I regressed into old habits and shut myself in, becoming less motivated to work, which let my grades slip, and fueled a depressive state for me. I've also had a risk of coming in contact with the virus, as my older sister is an essential healthcare worker, and I worry for her safety as well. Along with this, my father has been unemployed since late 2018, due to a car accident resulting in multiple surgeries, and all of the checks from the insurance company have gone to essential things such as rent, bills, and groceries for me and my 3 siblings; he was our family's primary source of income. I have attached one of his most recent doctor's notes, however the reason it is dated earlier is because he had another surgery to correct a previous one related to his accident. I rely heavily on federal funding to help me get through college, all so I can make my parents proud.

I will admit, placing blame on mental health is not enough. I will take the blame on myself, as a person with some time management issues. I have a support system of friends and family who will help me stay on track with this semester's classes. I have also taken one less class than last semester to lighten the load of work, but since I need to stay compliant with the Human Resources Foundation for my family's food stamps and such, I have been putting job applications in to help my father with bills, and to fund my own education when it comes to textbooks, as well as becoming a financially stable adult. I will make time for school and work, ensuring there is a balance that will not cause me to repeat my same mistakes. I have also requested counseling again for my mental health, and established a connection with my advisors so I can ask them any questions I have. I also have contacted the bursar and financial aid offices for help with my situation, in turn getting an extension until the 15th of September to pay for classes, which would be possible with the help of the federal financial aid I may recieve and the small savings I have been able to put away. I very deeply appreciate all the help I get, and I hope that you and your family are well in these unprecedented times.
Holt  Educational Consultant - / 10,552 3449  
Aug 28, 2020   #2
Being a first generation college student, as well being the daughter of immigrants is not an excuse. Do not include that in the letter. It sounds like you are asking for a pass simply because you are not a native of the country where you are currently residing. The Covid 19 pandemic is a tired excuse that all of the current unsuccessful students will be using. You need to add some other reasons for your failure other than Covid 19 and mental health. All of the students are currently claiming that Covid 19 has affected their performance in school due to the lack of classroom setting. Your letter, in other words, is nothing special. It is using the same tired excuse that the students this semester are falling back on. The letter is not emotional enough in appeal to warrant your readmission to the university. The situation about your sibling being a frontliner, your father's accident, all of these are not acceptable excuses. I have seen students be rejected for readmission based on far more serious reasons than what you present here. Attaching the health report of your father is useless as he is not the one applying for readmission. If you can attach a certification from your mental health professional that will attest to your current mental state and certify the medical steps that have been taken to help you better respond to the blended learning situation, then maybe you stand a chance. Like I said, there are too many failed students this semester, all using the same excuse, so your reapplication is a stretch. The reasons and solutions you state do not seem strong enough to convince a readmission officer to give you another chance.
OP cisunos 1 / 1  
Aug 28, 2020   #3
thank you for the feedback. this was only a first draft and i do plan on getting a letter from my mental health professional, and i'll admit you're right that some of these excuses sound like ones everyone else is using. this also isn't for readmissions but for financial aid, and i included the sentences of my father's disability to try and show that my family is tight on money, but i see that it does not look like a very strong argument.

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