Hourly Services Reviews
    Number of reviews [90]      Average Rating:       (4.9/5)
mbaMission
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Working with Katharine Lewis from mbaMISSION
April 20 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: September 12, 2013 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - got into all
This review is for:  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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Liza Weale Review
April 20 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: April 20, 2015 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Some, but not all
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Liza Weale
I worked with Liza on an hourly basis because I was not sure how many schools I wanted to apply to. My applications would not have reached their full potential with Liza’s help. Simply put, Liza’s services are well worth the price. She not only helped me with the applications directly but also consulted on which schools to apply to. Without Liza’s help I would not have known of Cornell’s strengths in the finance space. I could not have asked for a more creative, compassionate, and responsive consultant. Without Liza, I would still be stuck in my current role with no future in sight. Now, I am on my way to a successful MBA career. Working with Liza has been a pleasure.
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Highly recommend Liza
April 18 | 2015

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       By throwaway311 joined: November 25, 2013 | 39 | 12 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Some, but not all
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Liza Weale
Liza was an extremely helpful consultant who helped me tremendously through every step of the b-school app process. From the very beginning, she played an instrumental role guiding me towards schools best-suited for my career objectives and personal interests.

I cannot imagine crafting my story without her help. My background was non-traditional, but as I'm sure as every applicant can attest to, it's difficult to summarize your accomplishments and goals in a concise, thoughtful manner.

She reviewed each draft (of which there were probably too many) and provided excellent insight that really helped me strategically frame my background to position me as a strong candidate.

Her feedback, returned very quickly, and obvious compassion she exhibits to her clients makes the b-school process a little less daunting. She went above and beyond and continues to answer my most mundane questions post-acceptance, despite my running out of paid hours.

Liza truly cares about each of her clients, and I highly recommend her for anyone considering a consultant.
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mbaMission hourly services review
April 17 | 2015

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       By njh0049 joined: July 22, 2014 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Kate Richardson
After failing to score as highly on the GMAT as I had hoped, I sought the help of an admissions consultant to discuss my options. I scheduled two, 30 minute free consultations, one with Stacy Blackman, and one with mbaMission. The first consultation, with Stacy Blackman, lasted 12 minutes and I was treated as nothing more than a statistic. I was essentially told, with my GMAT score (620), I wasn't worth their time. I was distraught.

I decided to go ahead with the second consultation, and I sure am happy that I did! I spoke with Kate Richardson at mbaMission, and from the very beginning I could feel that her interest in helping me was genuine. She assured me that I had a unique and compelling story to tell, and that the GMAT is not the end all be all component of an application. While she didn't assist me with the GMAT, simply hearing her assurances provided me the confidence boost I needed, and 1 month later I had increased my GMAT score by 70 points.

I purchased the hourly services option as I was primarily interested in having my essays reviewed/edited. I worked with Kate on almost every application I prepared, and, with her help, was able to prepare concise and compelling essays that capitalized on the uniqueness of my situation. I was able to submit each application with the utmost pride and confidence in my work. She was honest, efficient (as I was paying by the hour, this was extremely important), and genuinely cared about my success. Thanks to her help, I was admitted to every school I applied to in round one, including the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon, with substantial scholarships from some, and just completed my interview with the University Of Michigan Ross School Of Business for round two.

Whether I get into Ross or not, I’m so extremely pleased with my success in this process. Having come from a non-prestigious university, with only a mediocre academic record, I never thought I would be able to attend a top 15 institution. I cannot recommend Kate and mbaMission highly enough, as without her help, none of this would have been possible.
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Highly Recommend Liza Weale! Greatly Exceeded Expectations!
April 15 | 2015

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       By egand1988 joined: April 15, 2015 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Liza Weale
Simply put, Liza’s input improved the quality of my applications and interview prep to a point it would not have reached if I only relied on my friends/family and myself.

I worked with Liza on an hourly basis since I decided to engage a consultant late in the application process. I was skeptical of the value of a consultant given the support I had from both alumni and family. However, even on the short 30 minute intro call, it was clear that Liza brought a professional lens I needed. As a former management consultant herself, she could relate to the story I was trying to tell and suggested straightforward ways to improve my reasoning behind ‘why an MBA’ to make it resonate with schools. Throughout our engagement (email back and forths on apps, essays, and a couple mock interview sessions), I found her feedback to be tactical, easy to implement, and she always made it clear how her suggested edits could improve my application. The feedback was also prompt and she made it feel like we were a team that had the same priorities.

In addition to the nuts and bolts of the application, working with Liza gave me the confidence I needed throughout the process. She made me feel more prepared, which was a difficult task given the amount of constructive feedback she gave :). In the end, I got into my first choice school and I don’t think that would have happened without her support.
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Great experience utilizing MBAmission consulting for EMBA admission
April 10 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: April 10, 2015 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - got into all
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Katharine Lewis
I highly recommend hiring some kind of consulting service to help you with your MBA application. It's a great tool and is just as important as taking a GMAT prep course (if not more).
When it came down for me to choose my consultant, I turned to MbaMission mostly because I read one of their books and a friend who got accepted into NYU Stern recommended them.
I was applying to and Executive MBA program, so I wanted a consultant that would best fit my particular needs (more experienced and geared towards an executive admissions process). One of the great things about MbaMission is that they have great profiles on each one of their consultants (including a video). This allows you to read up on all the consultants before choosing one. Almost like interviewing them – and since you’re about to pay them a lot of money, you should definitely conduct this “interview” process!
I ended up working with Katharine Lewis, which was one of the best choices I made in my whole application process. I chose her because she seemed a bit more refined, knowledgeable, confident, and all around the type of person you would expect to run into in an executive program. Her background was also very impressive; she got her MBA from Harvard and actually spent two years reading MBA applications at Stanford... is there any better person to have on your side than an actual admissions officer?!
Working with Katy was not a letdown! My two main concerns were my very tight schedule (I had less than a month to go from nothing to a completed application) and the fact that I was not applying to a typical full time program, but rather an executive program. In general, I felt like most resources out there (including consultants) where focusing on full time MBAs and very little attention was given to Executive MBAs, even though the requirements are very very different.
Needless to say, Katy addressed both issues very well. She was very responsive and an impressively quick reader. She worked very late hours and even weekends so she always found time to talk to me and meet tight deadlines. She knew exactly how to attack an EMBA essay and really gave me confidence that she had my back. If I had to choose the two most important things Katy has to offer (other than experience) I would say that
1) Besides doing an exceptional job, she really makes an effort to support you emotionally and to boost your confidence. This seems trivial, but I really felt comfortable with her. Even though I'm a very confident person, an MBA admissions process really critiques every aspect of your life and it's very nice to have someone be your cheerleader. Katy does just that while staying honest.
2) This one is a big one... she really encourages you to flood her with material and then she takes care of the filtering and editing. This is huge! It really makes your essays bring out who you are. Instead of wasting your time limiting yourself and filtering out information that you don't think is relevant, Katy pushes you to focus on putting it on paper and worrying about the sorting later. I am a very self-aware person, but this process gave me more than a few "AHA" moments when I held something in that Katy was able to bring out and to mold into a strong point.
An MBA can really change your life and is a very important key to your future, so make sure you give yourself all the tools to achieve success. A consultant is a no brainier.
I ended up getting accepted to my first choice EMBA program at UCLA Anderson. I worked with Katy on an hourly basis and she really did her best to give me as much input for every hour I purchased.
WARNING: the process is by no means cheap (in-fact it's pretty pricey), but at the end of the day it's an investment and well worth it. GOOD LUCK!
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Columbia EMBA review
April 08 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: December 25, 2013 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Katharine Lewis
I started working with Katharine about 3 weeks before my application deadline, which I initially thought was a lot of time to review my application, but proved to be short, because Katharine had so many positive changes to suggest.
I sent the first draft of my application to her:
Essay 1: Personal statement and why I want to pursue an EMBA now?
Katharine put life into my story and beautifully complemented one fact with the other, making a firm case to the Admissions committee on why they should accept me. She carefully asked me questions about my life & career that would strengthen my application and added the same.
Even though she is from a legal background, and I work in Finance, she really made an effort to understand my work environment and animate the same in my essay

Essay 2: How will you take advantage of being at the very centre of business?
Katherine pointed out that there was overlap between what I had written in my 1st essay and this one, so she strongly suggested I come up with reasons other than Essay 1. She forced me hard to think of reasons and well research the program website.
She always kept giving me feedback from the perspective of an Admissions committee member (since she used to review applications for a little bit at Stanford), which was very useful. She made me see her how an admissions person (not from my field) would look out for in my application, at the same time making my application unique and not commonplace.

Essay 3: Tell us something that your Cluster would be pleasantly surprised to know about you
This was the hardest question for me. Katharine did a few phone calls with me and pushed me hard to think about this one. When I actually put some disparate facts together, she put it together so well, that only after that could I see a story falling in place. Being able to give your application a unique touch and doing so in an interesting yet concise way, is the least to describe Katharine's talent. She was able to understand me and make me see how I could add value to Columbia, and represent the same in my application

Finally she reviewed my entire application front to back. Her prompt reviews on my application material esp towards the end, her close attention to detail (and I can say this because I work in Finance) and her unparalleled wisdom to see someone like me in my current environment and use the same in the application to give it a unique touch proved very valuable to me. This got me into the Columbia EMBA program and I would be more than happy to recommend her to anyone I know.

The interview prep:
Katherine prepped me so well in the interview, that I felt very relaxed when I was actually at the interview. She forced me to think of examples from my life to present to the admissions counseler. I actually HAD fun at my interview and came off as a natural. Kudos to her!!

Overall, 5 out of 5
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HBS via Katy Lewis
April 08 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: March 28, 2015 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Katharine Lewis
I was accepted this year at HBS and waitlisted at Stanford. The day I found out, I had (stupidly) forgotten to charge my phone, and as I stared at my Harvard acceptance letter, I realized I had about two calls left before my phone was going to die. I called my family, and then I called Katy Lewis. I had to tell her there was no way I could have gotten that letter without her.

Applying to business school is confusing and intimidating, but in every way I needed help, Katy was there. Two years ago, when I first called her for a consultation, she gave me one of the most important pieces of advice I ever got, about how to craft my nontraditional “story” in a way that makes sense to a business school. She has spent time at both HBS and GSB and has actually been an admissions officer there, so she was able to explain how they would see my background and what I would need to do to make it “make sense” to them. Her insight into how these schools worked was invaluable and helped guide my entire application process.

During that first conversation, I also asked Katy if it was better to apply that year or wait till I had a chance to spend time preparing. She was unflinchingly honest, and while everyone around me was saying “oh, go ahead, do it now, you’ll be fine,” she was the voice that advised caution and pointed out the potential pitfalls of applying too soon. It was a harbinger of one of the best parts of working with Katy: she is unfailingly realistic and honest (and also inevitably right). She was the one who told me what I needed to hear about my first GMAT score—retaking it on her advice was one of the best decisions I made. She steered me away from schools that were bad fits and helped me figure out what I most wanted out of my education. And, because I knew she wasn’t afraid to tell me the unvarnished truth, I knew I could really trust her when she encouraged me to take risks. She gave me the courage to apply to top schools despite my concerns about my quant score (which she helped me mitigate) and to move ahead with a relatively unconventional personal essay. Without her encouragement, I’m not sure I would have even applied.

Occasionally I had questions that no website or friend/family member could answer, like whether it was okay for a recommender to write a letter if they had gotten fired, or whether I could integrate a clarification of a bad answer into a post-interview thank you note. Katy’s answers and advice would always come immediately, by phone or by email, reflecting her seasoned understanding of what really matters to schools and what applicants can or should do. Katy was also freakishly accurate as a mock interviewer. Her HBS practice interview style was exactly what I found when I did my real interview a week later, so much so that it basically felt like the same experience.

For two years I have relied on Katy’s judgment and been buoyed by her confidence and kindness. To someone who is starting their own application journey, I can’t say enough about how helpful it is to have her on your side.
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Jessica Shklar - Simply the Best!!!
April 08 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: March 23, 2015 | 1 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Jessica Shklar
While studying for the GMAT with ManhattanGMAT, I participated in a mbaMission webinar about last minute applications Jessica hosted. After furiously taking notes realizing the wisdom and helpful hints she was providing, I knew instantly I had to work with her. My instinct was confirmed after taking advantage of a 30 minute free consultation with an advisor of your choice mbaMission offers when again I was impressed with Jessica’s knowledge, enthusiasm and encouragement of the application process.

I was applying to executive MBA programs and wanted to go to the best (Wharton). I knew I had the leadership experience and skills they looked for but with a low GMAT score and an average GPA from a tier 3 undergraduate university, it was going to be an uphill battle. Wharton puts such an emphasis on GMAT scores that I estimated there were about 10 spots for those who scored below 650 and the only way I was getting in was to come across as exceptional in every other aspect of my application. This is where Jessica came in. She gave me excellent feedback, ideas and direction. She’s incredibly gifted at helping applicants tell their story and gave great advise for a successful interview. She is also incredibly efficient. I worked with Jessica on an hourly basis and felt she gave me as much attention and care as she does all her clients, regardless of how many applications or hours you're signed up for. She helped me realize my dream (as I just learned of my acceptance) and I will forever be grateful. Thank you Jessica!
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A perfect fit
April 03 | 2015

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       By tallee22 joined: December 1, 2014 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Hollis Kline
I worked with Hollis on an hourly basis to polish up my application to 3 top ten business schools. At first I was hesitant to invest such a large sum in 60 minutes of a person's time. However, I went on to buy not one but six hours of Hollis's time, and can confidently say that every minute we worked together was the best possible use of my time and money.

Hollis was an excellent consultant for a number of reasons, here are some of my favorite characteristics:

- Prompt: Hollis always returned my material within the allotted time (48 hours), and often in half that time. This made me feel like my work was a priority to her, and it was also immensely useful to turn around final drafts and submit material in time for the Round 2 deadlines.

- Positive: All of Hollis's efforts were geared towards helping me present my best self, and that extended even to the tone and nature of our communications. She constantly encouraged me, while also giving the detailed feedback I needed to improve my application.

- Clear: Gone are the days of illusive feedback from professors about how to improve your English essays. The feedback Hollis gave on my personal statements was always very clear and easy to integrate, without losing my personal tone. This really helped me understand what the AdComs were looking for and significantly improved my statements as a result.

This Fall I will be attending Stanford GSB, a school I almost didn't apply to because it felt so far out of reach. I'm confident that Hollis played an instrumental role in elevating my application to the status that helped it get noticed and, ultimately, accepted by my dream business school.
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