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"Best" admission consulting companies?

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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 01 Nov 2011, 05:25
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 03 Nov 2011, 21:50
Does any of older applicants (above 32) here have successful experience with any of the admission consultants?
As I see, two of the biggest challenges in my profile are (a) I am already 32; will be 33 by the time I start school, (b) I also fall in one of the vastly representative & thus very competitive category in mba admissions.

Since in articulating their essays, older applicants face a slightly different set of challenges than those faced by candidates in their mid to late 20s, I was wondering if anyone with a similar background had a positive experience with any admission consultants?

I will greatly appreciate any response.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 07 Nov 2011, 01:18
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Hey guys,

I am applying in R2 and recently decided to work with a consultant. I must say the decision which one to choose was more difficult than I had thought. I strongly suggest thinking about this early, as it is not exactly very smart to add unnecessary stress into the already demanding application process. Also, think about what you really want from the consultant, such as: "do I want him to help me discover myself and then just edit the essays a little or do I prefer a more directive approach, in which the consultant has a strong influence on the apps" etc. That said, I'd like to comment on the initial impression that Paul Lanzilotti of Amerasia Consulting made (as I have ultimately decided to go with someone else, I will comment on the other guy at some other time, perhaps after the whole application process).

In my case, when I first contacted Amerasia, I spoke to Adam, who later decided I should speak directly to Paul. We had to postpone the first introductory call on a kind of short notice, but other than that, I felt that Paul was pretty fast with replies to my emails and was also willing to do the call on weekend. In the intro call Paul spoke mostly about my profile (I sent him my prior to the call) and the way I should position myself and which schools to target. We also discussed the way the cooperation would work with him and I think if you are prone to procrastionation, he would definitely help you overcome that and get to work early. I tried to find out how many clients Paul works with in each round but that one question wasn't answered (I know it is kind of personal, but it gave me a slight feeling that there might be a little too many clients; on the other hand, the question might have just been missed among others I had).

Paul also helped me (as an international applicant) to select some schools I have previously not considered. Overall, after the one our intro call, I was confident that I'd be in good hands. He probably edits the essays quite a bit, which might work for some and not for others. Make sure you discuss these things. Paul also claimed he goes over the whole application thoroughly before submitting, which might not be the case everywhere. That said, Amerasia is not the cheapest company out there (although they do offer a 10% discount for gmatclub members) and I ultimately decided to turn his offer down mostly because of the price tag.


I will comment on my consultant's work in January when I have submitted the last of my apps. Good luck everyone!
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 07 Nov 2011, 14:02
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I found 'Essay Snark' (essaysnark.blogspot.com) to be the best consultant that I worked with. I have been following the blog (or blahg) from a long time. On reading his blog, I found that he has profound knowledge in the MBA admissions process and essay reviews. I purchased their Kellogg strategy guide as a starting point for Kellogg essays. I think that is a great resource and helps you structure your essays. Also he offered personalized advice even before I was a paid customer with him.

I took a comprehensive service from a "reputed" admissions consultant. After my consultant gave a green signal, I just sent my essays to ES for a sanity check before submission. ES literally ripped apart my essays -- in a good way though (that's what we expect from a consultant right?). He offered a page of constructive feedback on the essays and also in-line comments on the essays. After reading his comments there were many areas in my essays where I thought sshtt I should have caught this error or inconsistency (or even my admission consultant should have). Generally ES only offers one set of reviews. After his comments, I made significant changes in my essays and he was kind enough to do a second, third round reviews. He also reviewed my resume for free.

Extremely satisfied with ES, I also took his help with two other schools. I also ended up rewriting an essay completely and making significant changes to essays based on his comments (keep in mind the consultant that I worked with for these schools told these were "good-to-go"). After reading the comments/feedback from ES I was pretty sure that had I submitted the essays sent to ES for review, I would have received a direct ding.

I don't have any admits in hand right now, so will update you guys on how that goes. At least, I feel that I was able to put my best foot forward.

ES is an anonymous blogger/consultant. I never had any issue, though. His turnaround times were excellent. There were couple of instances where he stayed around late to review my essays.

PM me if you have any questions.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 08 Nov 2011, 03:12
How about Expartus or Janet Stark?
Has anybody used their services or has any sort of experience with these guys?
Reviews and comments are welcome.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 08 Nov 2011, 19:53
Is it a B-school requirement to be on the AIGAC list? I do not see Essay Snark or Amerasia (Paul) listed on their website. Are B-schools ok with that? I do not want to jeopardize my application in anyway.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 12 Nov 2011, 07:53
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I want to echo Newton's comments above. I used EssaySnark for a free essay review. He (or she?) was very helpful - gave me excellent insights and also in depth analysis on what was right and what wasn't. Do note that a) there are no guarantees of each essay that is submitted getting reviewed and b) all essays are critiqued on the public blog, important information hidden of course.

Further, I have remained in touch with essaysnark over email for a few follow up questions around how to engage his services. He has been by far the MOST flexible person and someone I would have absolutely loved to work with. Alas, have already submitted all my applications for R1 and am unsure if I will be submitting anything in Round 2. Flexibility is evidenced in timelines of delivery, nature of engagement, enough details about what's inlcuded/what's not and then a LOT of follow up questions between us.

All in all, I have my money bet on EssaySnark as a more affordable, yet highly qualified admissions consultant. He is not a full consultant though, in the sense no phone calls. Only essay reviews although EXTREMELY well detailed - you would not need a phone call in that way.

If anyone needs more info, PM me.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 12 Nov 2011, 14:03
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I echo the sentiments already stated about Essay Snark. I started reading his blahg and got hooked. I have to say that he did wonders for my career goals essay (no he doesn't do any writing for you). I thought that my career goals were laid out perfectly (and even had proofreaders agree with me), but when ES read the essay he tore the thing apart. Two days before the application deadline I scrapped the entire essay and rewrote it from scratch. What I came up with the second time was 1000 times better.

ES gave me a whole lot of free advice and the essay critique service that I did purchase was extremely cheap and EXTREMELY helpful. I think the best thing about ES beyond his critiques is his ability to just "listen" (it's email so obviously not literally). I said everything that I wanted to say in my essays (or thought I was saying) in my dialogues with ES about the essay. I wound up using those emails as the base from which I wrote. ES goes above and beyond what he's paid to do and I can't speak highly enough about him.
I don't have any admits in hand yet but I'm so much more confident in the app I submitted because of ES's help. PM me if you want more details.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 20 Nov 2011, 06:32
Would like to know which of these consultants do the best MBA resume services?
Thanks!
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 20 Nov 2011, 08:55
ss87 wrote:
Would like to know which of these consultants do the best MBA resume services?
Thanks!

It's not difficult to do so yourself, the issue is that consult may actually mislead you in that topic!
SO have a look at CVs of current students and do that work yourself.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 23 Nov 2011, 06:32
hello guys!
i'm looking for good admission consulting companies that also specialize on JD/MBA programs.
Do you know some of them which have a good reputation and their consultants also got admitted to JD/MBA programs of top schools?
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 24 Nov 2011, 02:33
veve wrote:
hello guys!
i'm looking for good admission consulting companies that also specialize on JD/MBA programs.
Do you know some of them which have a good reputation and their consultants also got admitted to JD/MBA programs of top schools?


Adam @ Amerasia
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 24 Nov 2011, 04:27
Guys,

Does any one have any idea about Admission consultants for MSc programmes. ?

I contacted almost everyone. Everyone seem to be pretty fine in engaging me. But i haven't found any reviews of these consultants with respect to MSc Courses. :( Need some inputs badly.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 29 Nov 2011, 06:42
I finished up my applications and wanted to provide some feedback about my experiences with consultants. First, I applied to Harvard, Columbia, Kellogg, Tuck, and Johnson. I was accepted at Columbia, and interviewed with Kellogg and Johnson (waiting to hear back from them, along with Tuck. Dinged at Harvard).

In general, I strongly recommend anyone serious about a top-10 program take advantage of the insight and expertise that an established consultant can offer. At a minimum, get the free initial consultation to hear their thoughts. Going into the process, I had a decent idea of my "brand" and the stories I wanted to tell, and I consider myself a strong writer. I was hesitant to pay for help, but I was also concerned that I wouldn't be writing about the right things, or framing my essays for optimal impact. Getting the perspective of someone who was an expert on the admissions process made sense (you'd have a lawyer read a contract, or an accountant check your taxes, right?).

The first resource I found, and one of the best available, is the essaysnark blog. The snark ripped apart (in a good way) one of my first attempts at an essay, and provided great feedback. The articles are full of relevant and practical (and free) advice. I ended up purchasing a small package to help finish one of the last essays I was working on, and the quality (and speed) of the work was awesome. I also won a Twitter contest and got a free Columbia school guide :). Definitely check it out to get yourself started. (5 out of 5)

Then I started researching more formal (i.e. paid) options. I filled out a consultation request form with MBA Crystal Ball, only to find out they specialize in Indian applicants (I'm Caucasian from America). No matter, Sameer still offered to review my profile, and I ended up using their MBA Mock Application Process. It was a great value, and the mock interview really helped me articulate some of the key points I'd want to highlight later in the process. (4 out of 5 for me, probably higher for Indian applicant)

Sameer recommended I check out Precision Essay for additional help, and I spoke with Jon for a free consultation. In about 45 minutes, he synthesized my (non-traditional: logistics and military) background and career goals (MC) into a thorough and compelling story. I started slowly with their services (still convinced that, because I was a good writer, I could write good admissions essays), and they didn't pressure me to do anything more than I was comfortable with at the time. Eventually, I realized that their input would be an advantage, so I upgraded to a two school junior deluxe package (Columbia and Kellogg). The edits, turnaround time, customer service, and overall experience were all fantastic. Obviously, the final product speaks for itself (accepted at Columbia and had a great interview with a Kellogg alum). (5 out of 5; highly recommended)

During my research, I also received a free consultation from Clear Admit. I don't have anything negative to say: the discussion was helpful, the staff was friendly, and the follow-up service was good. But during the conversation, one big negative aspect of my situation came up (just left the military, and was spending some time in Europe = unemployed). We never really moved forward from this point, even though I was clear it was something that wouldn't change and that would have to be dealt with on my application. The response was basically "you should try to find a job" instead of thinking of how to frame and overcome the issue - this turned me off from their services. (3 out of 5, based strictly on the initial consultation; could be better as you get more in-depth)

Finally, in addition to all the paid services, most of the consultants offer a variety of free resources that I found very helpful during the application process. Stacy Blackman sent me a free "Designing Your Business School Brand" guide, Accepted offered a free report on how to fix the "5 Fatal Flaws" of college personal statements, Amerasia provided free guides on "How to Apply to Harvard Business School" (and Columbia), and Veritas Prep has an entire collection of Annual Reports for all the top schools. Add to these resources blogs, wikis, and forums that are hosted on most of their websites, and there's a ton of material out there to help you create the best application you can. I recommend you take advantage of all of it.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 30 Nov 2011, 04:17
Hi,

Can anyone provide a review on "Apphelp" consultant services? If you have worked with anyother Indian based consultant services for Essays editing, resume, interview, please let me know about your experinces.

Thanks,
LC
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 30 Nov 2011, 07:20
LifeChanger wrote:
Hi,

Can anyone provide a review on "Apphelp" consultant services? If you have worked with anyother Indian based consultant services for Essays editing, resume, interview, please let me know about your experinces.

Thanks,
LC



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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 30 Nov 2011, 07:34
Hey does anyone have any feedback on Stratus Prep? If anyone could send me a message or post here as soon as possible, I would greatly appreciate. Considering working with them for R2 but need to decide quickly.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 30 Nov 2011, 12:56
Hello What would be the recommendation on a good consultant, preferably boutique, specialising in IMD?
Since IMD is more of an industry oriented school, usual stories about consulting would not pop out among others. My case is - I plan to move from consulting to industry. Any suggestions given will be much appreciated.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 30 Nov 2011, 21:42
Expert's post
mray86 wrote:
Hey does anyone have any feedback on Stratus Prep? If anyone could send me a message or post here as soon as possible, I would greatly appreciate. Considering working with them for R2 but need to decide quickly.


Hm... never heard of them.
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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies? [#permalink] New post 01 Dec 2011, 09:37
LifeChanger wrote:
Hi,

Can anyone provide a review on "Apphelp" consultant services? If you have worked with anyother Indian based consultant services for Essays editing, resume, interview, please let me know about your experinces.

Thanks,
LC



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Re: "Best" admission consulting companies?   [#permalink] 01 Dec 2011, 09:37
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