CARNEGIE Mellon University mistakenly informed about 800 applicants that they had won a place in one of the school’s prestigious computer science programmes before retracting the acceptance letters, the school said.

The acceptance letters were sent by e-mail on Monday, according to the Pittsburgh-based school.

Many hours later – enough time for applicants to share what they thought was happy news with family and friends – the school sent out another round of e-mails telling the applicants they had not gotten in after all. “We understand the disappointment created by this mistake,” spokesman Byron Spice said on Tuesday.

Carnegie Mellon joins a growing list of American schools that have broken hearts with similar e-mail glitches in the past decade or so, including Cornell University. – Reuters