mbaMission Admissions Consulting Reviews
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mbaMission is a professional MBA Admissions consulting firm, specializing in helping business school applicants identify and showcase the strongest aspects of their candidacy in their applications. Their dedicated consultants work one-on-one with candidates to ensure their unique stories are presented in a compelling way that will make the admissions committees take notice.
Immensely Helpful Guidance January 21 | 2015
2 out of 2 people found the following review helpful
     By Anonymous 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

Yes - got into all

This review is for: mbaMission * School Packages | Consultant: Rachel Beck

I worked with Rachel Beck on the two school package for Columbia Business School and London Business School.

I was immediately impressed by Rachel's thorough knowledge of the admissions process. I also think her background in journalism serves her well when it comes to drawing out interesting aspects of a candidate's background. When it comes to me personally, I did not have a traditional background and had a weak GPA (3.0) but a very strong GMAT (750). She dug in immediately and spent hours on the phone with me talking through my background, and the aspects that would resonate with the admissions boards of the schools that interested me.

We then set about the writing process, which began with conceptual discussions which evolved into outlines and then first drafts followed by numerous rounds of back-and-forth editing. The progress was steady and on schedule (I'm sure I would have fallen behind, if not for Rachel). Importantly, Rachel was always extremely responsive and did thoughtful work that improved my essays in a quick amount of time.

I was very happy with the finished product, because it was not only polished and tight, but also an honest reflection of the person I am. When it came to interviewing, Rachel made the process a calm exercise. She conducted mock interviews with me and didn't rest until I was fully prepared. Her approach made the (somewhat daunting) prospect of a business school interview totally do-able.

The final result was acceptance to both schools, and I don't think I could have done it without Rachel's help.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review helpful
     By Anonymous 1 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

Some, but not all

This review is for: mbaMission MBA Application Boot Camp | Consultant: Angela Guido

I took mbaMission's boot camp last summer and applied to schools this past winter. It was really a fantastic experience! Breaking it down...

There were three main reasons I took the boot camp:

1. I didn't know what an MBA essay should look / read like. I work in entertainment (TV production) and have some background in creative writing, but I wanted to make sure I was putting my best foot forward with these essays and wasn't coming across too vague or artsy.

2. I was really intimidated by the price tags I was seeing for one-on-one consulting services, and the boot camp seemed like a great deal!

3. I had the pleasure of meeting Angela at a couple of events through the Forte Foundation and knew that I had to jump at any opportunity to work with her in a small-group setting.

I really LOVED my experience with the boot camp! Another numbered list:

1. Right off the bat, you get a bunch of really wonderful written resources from mbaMission that help you brainstorm, identify and construct stories, polish your resume, and even work with recommenders.

2. The group is small enough that everyone participates, and you get the individual feedback that I feel like we're all hungry for. You get some feedback on your work during the call, and we had homework after the call that we reviewed individually with Angela. We had to draft an essay and list potential stories for other essay topics, and we got individual feedback on all of it. So awesome.

3. I learned what an MBA application should look like. There is a method to the madness and a structure that adcoms recognize and understand. Especially as a non-traditional candidate, I wanted to make sure that my application made sense to them and that I was communicating my skills and experiences in a way that they would understand. The methods I learned for essay-writing and resume polishing really helped with that.

4. This boot camp made me get my butt in gear! Angela makes you write during the boot camp, like live during the webinar. I was really nervous about the essays and was TOTALLY procrastinating, but I was forced to start writing in class, and it really helped make the essays seem less intimidating.

5. Angela is awesome!! Seriously, she's so great. She also knows a whole lot about storytelling and screenwriting, so if you don't have a lot of experience telling stories, she's an amazing asset. For me, as someone working in entertainment, was wonderful to work with someone who knows about my industry.

So, this is a long review, BUT I do want to tell you guys how my admit process is going so far. I applied to five schools (Stanford, Kellogg, Anderson, Stern, and McCombs) and have been accepted with significant scholarships to Kellogg and Anderson, have an offer from McCombs, and have an interview invitation from NYU.

For me, this workshop was the start to a months-long process of introspection and intense MBA application grind. And it was the RIGHT start to that process. This class touches on all aspects of your application, from understanding the adcom to building your goals, to of course essays and resumes, which are the main focus. I found it so valuable, especially since you do get individual attention from your instructor.

I hope this review was helpful, and good luck to you during your MBA journey!! You got this!

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Katy is life changing April 19 | 2015
2 out of 2 people found the following review helpful
     By Anonymous 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

Some, but not all

This review is for: mbaMission Hourly Services | Consultant: Katharine Lewis

I worked with Katy on my Round 2 applications for 3 schools. By way of background, my stats are 770, 3.7, finance background but currently working in nonprofit. I was accepted at HBS and Haas and wait-listed at GSB.

I think the most impressive aspect of working with Katy was how intuitive and insightful she is in understanding me as a person. After I filled out the brainstorming questionnaire, Katy and I had an hour long call to discuss essay topics. She surprised me halfway through by saying "this is what I think matters to you" and then explaining my values to me better than I have ever been able to do myself. I found that essay topic picking was the most daunting part of this process so I was really greatful that she could help me sort my scattered thoughts out so effortlessly.

Regarding actual essay writing and editing, Katy was good at helping me cut my first draft down (it was twice as long as the limit) by helping me remove sections that weren't as impactful. She also definitely has a knack for rewording things to get the word count down. I started the round 2 process pretty early so my main Stanford/Harvard essay went through a lot of different iterations before I submitted and she definitely provided the big picture guidance that I was really looking for through those iterations.

Katy was also really helpful in prepping me for my interviews. Mbamission has a ton of data on prior interviews which was really helpful and the mock HBS interview I did with her definitely made me feel more prepared when I walked into the room on that one.

Katy also just has a lot of general knowledge about the admissions process which provided really helpful context throughout the process. She is clearly in the flow both through her personal experiences and friends at the schools I applied to, and she works with what seems to be an impressive clientele so she is seeing in real time how her clients' applications resonate with adcoms. Her follow up to our calls was always timely and professional and included materials we had discussed on the calls.

If you are considering working with Katy I would definitely at least have the free 30 minute convo with her, I got a lot of great insights from her just in that first call. Also the mbamission materials are relatively cheap and you should read all of them even if it's not exactly a beach read. Finally, I would just say that, other than being super effective and knowledgeable, Katy is just a truely lovely person who really likes working with young people who are trying to figure out what the heck to do with their lives.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review helpful
     By Anonymous 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

Yes - got into all

This review is for: mbaMission Hourly Services | Consultant: Katharine Lewis

Context: I applied to B-school in the fall of 2014. Due to the last minute nature of my application and lack of confidence with interviews, I sought support from Katharine (Katy) Lewis at MbaMission. I wrote to her after hearing about her from a friend and after having a mock consultation with her – which left me with a strong impression of her knowledge of the two schools I was interested in (HBS and GSB). I took the hourly package and decided to reach out to Katy for support with my essay and interviews.

Things that stand out from my experience with Katy:

1. She knows the two schools that I applied to – Stanford and Harvard – EXTREMELY well. She understands the nuances in style/focus for the two schools and helps you package your essay accordingly.

2. Her knowledge of the two schools is particularly helpful in preparing for the mock interview. I did a mock interview with Katy before my GSB and HBS interview – both of which, as I realized later, differ significantly. The questions that she prepped me with for GSB and HBS had little in common and she was unbelievably spot on with the points from my resume/essay that the interviewers were likely to talk about. She made my interviews a smooth sail.

3. She is exceptionally responsive and goes the extra mile to accommodate your needs – be it in terms of responding to requests for calls/essay reviews/scheduling a mock interview/reviewing the post-interview reflection – she is a consistent, encouraging, and reliable partner through it all

4. She gives you enough room to speak about your ideas/doubts/fears and extract all that she can from you – in terms of the story for your essay as well as the interview. She then responds with very specific feedback to package it appropriately. There were times when she told me “this is perfect, you should go ahead with it”, she won’t give you advice/suggest modifications just for the heck of it. This is immensely helpful for one to remain genuine to one’s story and style throughout the process.

Result: Made it to both Stanford and Harvard (yet to make up my mind on where to go). Immensely thankful to Katy for this. She is also helping me make my decision given her deep insights into the schools.

My advice to applicants: Be thoughtful as to what you need help with when working with a consultant. Exhaust all free resources you can get access to – friends, free consultations, etc. – and then make the decision on whether or not to take help. Things that I find value in when it comes to working with a (good) consultant – validation of your theme, packaging of ideas customized to different schools, and mock-interviews.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review helpful
reviewer identity verified by membership
     By Anonymous 4 17
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

Some, but not all

This review is for: mbaMission * School Packages | Consultant: Katharine Lewis

One week after my brainstorming session, Katy said ‘I’ll be surprised if you don’t get into at least one of your preferred schools, and I am quite sure you’ll have options in that too’. I was surprised too - to hear that I would ‘have options’. But six months down the line I realized that I was wrong. From a seven out of seven dings a year ago, to getting accepted at three programs (including one M7 school) and four waitlists (including two M7 schools) ---- this is the step change that Katy brought about in six months.

I am the overrepresented South Asian Engineer with very high GMAT, average GPA, and with little work experience or global exposure.

Katy is a S.T.A.R consultant, and I mean every letter of it.

S – Succinct – Slashing a 1000 word essay down to 500 words would be extremely difficult if we also expect to preserve the gist of the story along with its details. But Katy knew amazing ways just to do that and also to teach it. What’s more, after 5 schools, I learnt the trick myself, very unusual among such consultants who ensure that they keep the core skills and abilities to themselves for repeat business. One of the best examples of editing was how Katy managed to bring down my 60+ line resume to 50 lines without leaving out a single detail. She did that by restructuring and combining lines. But even when editing my essays or my recommendations, she always made sure that the writing style was original intact. I read in many places that consultants usually suggested non-traditional recommenders to adapt to the US style of writing, but Katy said ‘no’ because it would add all the more color to my application, if they preserved their style.

T – Terrific passion and commitment – I would consider myself more disciplined and organized than the usual applicant, but Katy always motivated me to ‘do more’. On days I was bogged down with other commitments, I would see ‘Checking in’ mails from Katy, and then I’d squeeze in one more draft of an essay. Then again, during the peak application season, when Katy’s workload would be highest, Katy always was flexible enough to answer my phone calls or emails (or at least give an appointment if she were in a meeting). This remained true even during her vacations. Sometimes I accidentally called her when she was on vacation, and she always replied, ‘I am on vacation but I can make time for you’. (FYI, most of the times I chose to wait until she returned to work, but there was once or twice where I HAD to get her help, and she didn’t hesitate.)

A – Attention to detail, in an uncommon way – My expectation from an MBA consultant was to find my story and word application materials appropriately. Katy probed into unusual aspects of the application making sure that I didn’t have any loose ends at all. In my Skype – mock interviews, I remember Katy suggesting minor improvements in the lighting angle, my posture, and even the height of my webcam. Most of these were ‘easily overlooked small differences, big impact’ suggestions.

R – Right stories – I vividly remember the many instances when Katy would suggest that I choose one story, which clearly I had underestimated, over the other. I understood Katy’s extent of involvement and understanding about myself (via the ‘Brainstorm doc’), her thoroughness with each school’s values and finally her ability to integrate these to best reflect ‘myself’. I was clearly able to show why the admissions committee should choose me over hundreds of other South Asian engineers, and why my future classmates would love to share the classrooms (or dorms) with me. For a person, myself, with little exposure to the US education system and culture, choosing the right story meant a lot.

Now, after almost a year after I had signed up with Katy, I don’t feel that it was a business deal. Katy has become the combination of a good mentor and a close friend who still makes time for me after I have enrolled. When I was pressed for time to get my U.S. visa to attend 2 of my interviews, Katy even offered to become my sponsor, so that the process would be easier.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review helpful
     By Anonymous 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

Some, but not all

This review is for: mbaMission * School Packages | Consultant: Angela Guido

Last year, I applied to several business schools and was denied by all of them. It was pretty discouraging to say the least and I wasn't sure if I really wanted to try again. My company hosted an mbaMission info session and I decided I would give it another shot with their help.

I had a consultation with Angela and found her to be a great resource in the 30 minutes that we initially spoke. I quickly decided that I wanted to be paired up with her to aid me with some new applications as well as some reapplications.

During the process, Angela helped relieve a lot of the stress I had from the previous year's results. She gave me great advice on how to improve my resume and make my essays more powerful. We were able to work through each essay over a couple week period and I never found her to be unresponsive to any of my inquiries.

With the guidance I received, I was able to gain admission to some great MBA programs and had a tough decision to make in the end on where I wanted to go.

To anyone considering this service, I would highly recommend working with Angela not only because she is very knowledgeable on the whole application process but also because she is a real genuine person.

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Katharine Lewis Review July 15 | 2015
2 out of 2 people found the following review helpful
     By Anonymous 0 0
This review is for: mbaMission * School Packages

I first consulted Katy over the summer as I was debating whether or not to take the GMAT again (my score was significantly below the average) and apply to business school this past fall. I’m on the younger side of applicants and was on the fence about applying this year, but had been sponsored by my company to attend. Katy was very honest and rationale, laying out the pros and cons for me to consider. I decided to apply this fall anyways, despite not having enough time to retake the GMAT for a higher score and not being able to apply Round 1 due to work commitments. It was definitely a risky move given I aspired to apply to only top 10 schools without a “safety”, though Katy was 100% supportive of what I wanted to do.

Over the course of the next few months, Katy not only helped me lay out a detailed timeline to draft and complete my applications in order to accommodate my crazy work schedule, she also took the time to really get to know me personally, which substantially helped the development of my story. Through our brainstorming sessions and consistent email exchanges, she enabled me to really self-reflect and think about what has made me who I am today that I had otherwise not thought of before. This was instrumental to getting to the root of my goals, why I want to go to business school, and ensuring that I applied both professional and personal examples from my life to ground my applications.

As I began to write my essays, Katy was incredibly responsive and thorough in her feedback as I iterated on drafts and even went back to the drawing board over a few weeks. She was very honest and challenged me when needed, and at other times told me not to change a thing. I would not have been able to apply to the schools I did without her help and guidance. She made me feel at ease when I was feeling the pressure, and helped me think logically about the fact that I could always reapply given my age.

To my surprise I went 5/5 in my interviews, including at three of the top 5 schools. Katy was incredibly helpful with my interview prep and ensuring that I kept true to myself so that I was not nervous or robotic come interview day. Though now the results are not exactly what I was striving for, I can happily say I was genuinely myself in my applications and on interview day, and that I still was admitted to two schools with scholarship funding, and waitlisted at two, despite my GMAT score and potentially more junior experience. Since, I have been admitted off the waitlist to HBS, where I will be attending this fall.

Katy was extremely helpful in navigating the waitlist process, and staying proactive. She was instrumental in helping me get to where I am now, especially with regards to personal and professional development through the application process.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review helpful
     By Anonymous 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

Some, but not all

This review is for: mbaMission Hourly Services | Consultant: Katharine Lewis

I have consulted with Katherine over the course of several months while applying to HBS and CBS. I have used around 10-15hours of her service.
Katherine's advice has been incredibly helpful in getting in to top MBA programms, whether it was about brainstorming my essay storyline or working through style of writing. She definitely approaches each applicant in a very personal way, spends required time to help (or even more!) and does not count time "to a minute" which allows for more relaxed atmosphere. She is very flexible in terms of arranging review calls, even when it comes to last minute requests. Katherine is definitely worth recommending and I would use her service again if I had to! FYI I have been invited for HBS interview (did not go through unfortunately) and got in to CBS! Good luck everyone!

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Review May 17 | 2015
2 out of 2 people found the following review helpful
     By Anonymous 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

Yes - got into all

This review is for: mbaMission Hourly Services | Consultant: Katharine Lewis

I began speaking with Katy more than a year before I applied. I sought her advice on whether it was a good time for me to apply. She helped me think through retaking the GMAT, ideal time to attend, and how my career choices might affect my application. Once it was time to apply she edited essays, helped me choose recommenders, and even reviewed my answers to the high volume of short response questions. After getting waitlisted at Stanford, my top choice, she also helped me decide how I might reach out to the school and keep them updated. In the end, I was accepted to Stanford and am very grateful to Katy for helping get there. She was there with me through the entire process and her advice was extremely useful to me at every point. In addition to giving great advice, she was always quick to respond and she really cared about my success.

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     By Anonymous 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

Yes - school of my dreams

This review is for: mbaMission * School Packages | Consultant: Katharine Lewis

I started working with Katy in August of 2014 for the 2014-2015 MBA application cycle. Before reaching out to Katy, I had done very little preparation other than taking the GMAT and truly had no idea what I was getting into to be ready to submit applications in the first and second rounds. Though Katy knew that there was a lot to be done, she made the process as easy as possible, starting with setting realistic goals for my process. I had originally planned to apply to 6 or 7 schools in the first round, and she very wisely advised me that I was setting myself up for failure, leading me to apply to three schools in the first round.

During my application process, Katy simply went above and beyond. She knows all of the programs intimately and was able to put herself in my shoes after I provided her with an in depth profile of my background during my brainstorming process. This allowed me to craft each of my applications to the best extent possible, focusing more on telling my story rather than submitting a generic profile, which was the approach I intended to take before working with Katy. Furthermore, Katy has been on both sides of the table as an MBA applicant and student herself and also as an admissions reader. This allowed her to provide me with a perspective that is truly unmatched. She was much more of a life coach during the process than a “consultant on the clock.” No matter how many drafts or how long it took to get to the absolute best application draft, Katy patiently worked with me throughout the entire process. In addition, Katy made time to work with me on other aspects of my applications besides the essays. She read my entire applications and provided me feedback, worked with my recommenders as if they were a client as well, met with me in person for every interview, and even spoke with my father countless times during the process. I can assure you that most consultants would not go to the level that Katy does for her clients. We also spoke at length about strategy, school choices, and even alternative MBA programs given the challenge I had of convincing schools that I was a compelling candidate, despite my low GMAT score.

After the first round, I was admitted to USC, which was my back up school and waitlisted to my first choice, Stanford. I decided to apply to three more schools over the holiday months and Katy worked with me through all of the applications – even on New Year’s Eve. During this time, I also experienced some irregular requests from Stanford including a request for an additional letter of reference and a phone call from the admissions office. While Katy had never seen these requests before, she helped me strategize and handled them as if they were common occurrences.

Ultimately, I was admitted to Stanford and I give Katy much of the credit. She was a master at navigating the waitlist process – making sure not to be overbearing on the school. She helped me craft the right message in my continued letter of interest and made the suggestions of retaking the GMAT and providing a peer reference. If you are willing to follow Katy’s advice, I simply do not think you can find a better partner in what is a very long and challenging process full of highs and lows. Looking back on the process, I would not have wanted to do it alone and I truly believe I would not have achieved the same outcome without her. When I called her to let her know the news, she was as excited for me as I was. I simply cannot recommend her highly enough.

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