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Ask MBAvolunteers - application feedback for a donation

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Ask MBAvolunteers - application feedback for a donation [#permalink] New post 08 Jan 2011, 07:27
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Hi all,

We would like to introduce MBAvolunteers to you. We are a fund raising group consisting of current and former MBA students from top business schools such as Harvard Business School, Stanford, MIT, Kellogg, Chicago Booth, Columbia, London Business School, INSEAD and many more. We provide application feedback (essays and CV reviews) and interview preps in exchange for a donation to charity. Our "service" is meant for those who don't have family or friends with MBA admissions experience to turn to for feedback on their MBA applications and who at the same time don't want to use admissions consultants for financial or ethical reasons.

We've been around since 2008 and have reviewed over 100 applications so far thereby raising more than $15,000 for charity while helping applicants get into top business schools worldwide. Applicants who work with us are highly satisfied and consistently give us positive reviews on our service. We are on GMATclub to answer any questions you may have regarding your application or the admissions process and would also be happy to provide profile evaluations.

For more information on MBAvolunteers please visit our website: http://www.MBAvolunteers.org
Should you have any questions regarding our service feel free to post here or send us a PM.

Best of luck for your applications!
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Re: Ask MBAvolunteers - application feedback for a donation [#permalink] New post 08 Jan 2011, 08:38
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Great idea and i wish you every success. I am curious, however, what you meant or were implying by people not wanting to use consultants for "ethical reasons." I am trying not to be offended by that comment, and wonder what you see as the difference.
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Re: Ask MBAvolunteers - application feedback for a donation [#permalink] New post 08 Jan 2011, 09:35
Hi Bryant,

Apologies if you may have been offended by our posting. Whether using admissions consultants is "unethical" or not we believe is a purely subjective view point. Some find that it is unfair aid when using admissions consultants to craft business school applications, because others don't have such help either because they can't afford it or they believe applicants should do this on their own. Also, I'm not sure what business schools' official position is on the use of admissions consultants, but I recall from the time when I applied that Eric Abrams, then admissions director at Stanford GSB, told us not to use admissions consultants. At a UC Berkeley Haas info session I heard the same thing. Instead, we should seek help from family and friends, especially those with MBA admissions experience. Some applicants, however, don't have such family and friends who could provide constructive feedback on MBA applications. That's where MBAvolunteers is trying to help out.

A further factor of the "legitimacy" is also the wide variety of services offered. Some agencies actually write essays for applicants or tell them what to write - something MBAvolunteers and I assume most admissions consultants won't do.

On the other hand, MBA programs do work with admissions consultants (e.g. when they give interviews for Stacy Blackman) so they can't be that opposed to them. And plenty of applicants have no ethical issue at all using admissions consultants, evidenced by the huge admissions consulting industry out there. But again, whether using admissions consultants is ethical or not should be a subjective opinion.
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Re: Ask MBAvolunteers - application feedback for a donation [#permalink] New post 09 Jan 2011, 09:05
Is employing admissions consultants any more unethical than using a school's career services people to assist with resume writing, interview skills, and job searches? Most people will not have access to something like this at any point in their life without paying a search firm.
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Re: Ask MBAvolunteers - application feedback for a donation [#permalink] New post 10 Jan 2011, 12:46
You make a good point piggles, but I don't think you can use this as a comparison here. Many jobs in consulting, banking and industry are specifically tailored for MBAs. Non-MBAs don't even have access to recruiting for these jobs (hence for many the reason to get an MBA in the first place!). The point is: Everyone in the MBA program has access to the services you mention (resume writing, interviewing skills, etc.). If you had to pay for these services, or they would be only available to some, then it would be a different story.
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MBAvolunteers - Application feedback in exchange for a donation to charity

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Re: Ask MBAvolunteers - application feedback for a donation [#permalink] New post 10 Jan 2011, 13:10
Actually, high-level MBA career offices, resume help, brands, and alumni networks are only available to the select few people who are admitted to high-level programs. In contrast, consulting services are much more egalitarian. Many, many more people could afford to employ MBA admissions consultants than will ever have the opportunity to attend high-level MBA programs. If using a person's advantages (in this case financial means) was unethical, then just about everyone in the world is unethical.

Sticking with the B-School theme, it would be just as unethical for a person employed in a company with many MBAs to use his/her network for assistance with essays or interview prep. I didn't have access to that network because of my pre-MBA career choice, so no one should.

I think your service is a great public service, don't get me wrong. I'd even consider participating as an MBA2.

However, I really disagree that admissions consulting can be considered unethical. I wrote every word in my essays, developed my own career goals over several years, developed an alternative transcript, and obsessively prepared for my own interviews. A consultant helped me tailor my message to connect with adcoms and proofread my essays. If I was a consultant already, I wouldn't have needed that help.
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Re: Ask MBAvolunteers - application feedback for a donation [#permalink] New post 10 Jan 2011, 13:23
Thanks Giggles, yes you absolutely have every right to view admissions consulting as perfectly acceptable and ethical. It's a subjective view point. In our first post we don't say it's unethical, but we say we may appeal as an alternative to those who view it to be unethical. There have already been many many heated discussions on GMATclub on this topic :-). Let's just leave it as is: For some it's unethical, for some not.
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MBAvolunteers - Application feedback in exchange for a donation to charity

Re: Ask MBAvolunteers - application feedback for a donation   [#permalink] 10 Jan 2011, 13:23
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