MBAPrepSchool Admissions Consulting Reviews
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Excellent experience with Chris Aitken of MBAPrepSchool
April 07 | 2013

1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful
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       By Mbainvestor joined: February 17, 2010 | 17 | 16 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive School Package   Consultant:  Chris Aitken
I want to strongly recommend Chris Aitken at MBA Prep School. Though I hired him only on an hourly basis, I found his advice to be very impactful and have very high bang-for-the-buck. He did a great job pushing me to articulate my rationale for why MBA and to get more specific about what attracts me to a specific school, while providing thoughtful suggestions. These were the weak points of my application and he zeroed in on them and worked with me to close the gaps. Though I was just an hourly client, Chris took the time to understood my background and goals and worked closely with me on all of my essays. He went above and beyond: he got on the phone and spent extra time with me when he didn't have to to make sure my essays were of high quality, and performed miraculous edits on a super-tight 24-hour deadline in the thick of R2 applications. He was also direct and honest. My first drafts were terrible and Chris wasn't afraid to call that out and push me to improve them.

I got into all but one school that I applied to (Wharton, Columbia, and Booth), including my top choice school. The only place I was rejected from was HBS and that was a real long shot because of my age and profile.

As a separate point, I am a reapplicant. I used another admissions consultant from a major well-reviewed firm last time around and I can unequivocally say that my experience with Chris was far superior vis-a-vis both quality of service and admissions outcomes, even though I spent significantly less time working with him.
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STRONGLY Recommend Lorraine Tong, MBA Prep School - Accepted to my dream school
March 07 | 2013

1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful
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       By reillyko joined: April 2, 2012 | 0 | 5 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive School Package   Consultant:  Lorraine Tong
I can’t say enough about my admissions consulting experience with Lorraine Tong at MBA Prep School. When I began the application process, I had one goal in mind – to get accepted to Columbia Business School. I explored a few different admissions consultants before speaking with Lorraine. The 1st consultant reviewed my CV, and after sitting down with me for a few minutes, advised me that my background was not strong enough and that I not even apply to the likes of Columbia. Another consultant spoke with me on the phone for a few minutes and offered nothing more than generic feedback and a vague approach to the application process. Lorraine, on the other hand, provided thorough and thoughtful analysis of my background and admissions prospects, laying out a specific and strategic approach to my application and how to differentiate myself among the sea of qualified applicants.

Throughout the entire process, Lorraine was intelligent, insightful, thoughtful, and patient. She worked to accommodate my changing schedule and was understanding of the stress and difficulty associated with applying to business school. Most importantly, she exhibited complete understanding of the admissions committee’s mindset and the ways to successfully navigate their essay prompts. At one point I actually argued with Lorraine when she recommended that I totally rework one of my essays, thinking my response was already pitch perfect. She confidently and deftly explained why my essay was missing the mark and brainstormed with me to help come up with the right topic.

It’s worth noting that I went through the application process a few years ago without the benefit of an admissions consultant like Lorraine. Given the various costs associated with this process – i.e. test prep classes, GMAT costs, application fees – I was certainly loath to part with even more money. I completed five applications that year and came up empty.

When I revisited the process this past application season, I decided that whatever the final outcome might be, I needed to give it my all and put forth my absolute best effort. What I found was that Lorraine had an impact on every phase of the application, from my resume, to the essays, to the way I completed the actual application itself. She guided me around various pitfalls and mistakes I never would have recognized on my own, and the result was simply a much more finely tuned final product than anything I had submitted to schools in the past.

Each person should obviously decide for themselves how much money they are comfortable investing into their applications, but I can attest that having Lorraine as my consultant put me in the best position to succeed.

Putting my faith in Lorraine was one of the best decisions I could have made in this process. Had I listened to that 1st consultant’s advice, I might not even have put in an application. Instead, I went with Lorraine and will be attending my dream school in the fall. I would wholeheartedly recommend Lorraine’s services to anyone applying to business school.
-Columbia Business School ‘15
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MBA Prep School a must for a Top B School offer..
April 07 | 2013

1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful
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       By kamilamarsingh joined: March 30, 2013 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Some, but not all
This review is for:  Comprehensive School Package   Consultant:  Chris Aitken
Being an Indian candidate comes with its challenges and at the same time not everyone out there can help non US/Europe candidates bring the best out in their applications. But after working with Chris and MBA Prep School I would recommend them to anyone who is serious about putting in a strong application to a top b school.

Worked with Chris throughout my application process. Unlike a lot of other consultants out there MBA Prep School offers a very personalized experience, I talked with Chris many times over the phone as well in addition to normal editing. Despite the massive time difference he was always available and post editing the difference was there to see.

I did not have the best GMAT out there but with his help and planning I managed to get a Top European Program. The MBA Prep School online process is simple and anyone can use it without hassle. 24 hour turn around usually meant your edited documents were back in lesser than 24 hours. Chris knew the specific needs of individual B school essays and that made all the difference. He knows individual B school cultures inside out and brings that out in your application, without which a strong candidate too doesn't stand a chance at the best B schools.

I used MBA Prep School's mock interview service as well and I have to say the mock interview was tougher than my actual interview. No aspect of my application or essays was left untouched and Chris made sure the interview experience was akin to the actual culture of the B school.
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MBA Prep School
April 22 | 2013

1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful
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       By Anonymous joined: April 22, 2013 | 1 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  Comprehensive School Package   Consultant:  Chris Aitken
I had interviewed a number of different MBA consultants to help with my application and ultimately decided on Chris and MBA Prep School. When we spoke, he came across as knowledgeable, experienced, and I thought our personalities would mesh well. Upon interviewing consultants, I actually think I undervalued this last characteristic, which for me proved to be most constructive in my process.

In addition to all of the prepared modules, videos, and frameworks that he had on his site to help me fill out my application, I found Chris to be most valuable in helping me to think through the purpose behind my application / candidacy, which I felt in the end.

For those who have not applied before, the business school application process can be wrenching not only from a time standpoint, but even more so from an introspection perspective. At least for me, it was the first time in my life where I really spent a ton of time thinking through whether this was something I wanted to commit a lot of time and money to doing. Through the written modules and our weekly conversations, Chris pushed me to dig deep into what mattered most to me, what I truly wanted to be when I grew up, and what experiences I’d had in my life that shaped who I was. It was in doing so that I was best equipped to reinforce my decision to apply and also fill out the best application possible.

After completing this extensive brainstorming marathon, Chris was helpful in picking out what he thought were the best stories and helping me to concatenate them into a cohesive story that formed the basis for my application and subsequent interview. In connection with this, he was able to help me identify the key parts of my story to reinforce during each phase of the process. I have no doubt that my application and candidacy was meaningfully better having worked with Chris and am very grateful for his counsel.
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Chris - A fantastic guy
August 13 | 2013

1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful
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       By Anonymous joined: August 13, 2013 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  Comprehensive School Package   Consultant:  Chris Aitken
Chris is a fantastic and marvelous guy. We had lengthy discussions on how to frame the answers and he never really bothered about the time we spent. In this process, he ensured that we come up with the best answers. He worked well beyond his role of an advisor and a consultant and helped me more as a friend and a well-wisher. Chris also prepared me well for the interviews and ensured that I give strong responses. In addition, his coaching was insightful and effective. It was great working with him and I really enjoyed the interaction. I applied in the third round deadline, yet due to Chris’s strong inputs, I was able to make it to my dream school. I would not hesitate to say that the credit for my admissions to Stanford, Yale and London Business School goes to him.
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Great Experience with Chris Aitken and the MBAPrepSchool Platform
February 24 | 2014

1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful
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       By Anonymous joined: November 12, 2012 | 12 | 5 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive School Package   Consultant:  Chris Aitken
I interviewed several consultants and would recommend any MBA applicant to do the same. Ultimately the rapport and personal fit between you and the consultant is most important as you will spend a lot of time working together and will need to be comfortable opening up about your strengths and weaknesses.

I immediately appreciated Chris’ fair, honest feedback. He was comfortable being critical and asked a lot from me, but was always diplomatic when bearing bad news. For example, he convinced me to write the GMAT a second time, and rewrite essays numerous times.

I found the introspection necessary for strong essays difficult, but Chris asked the right questions to find great stories, recognize new value in my experiences, while rightly convincing me to disregard others. His advice was substantive, constructive, personalized, and actionable from day one.

It was also very important to me that Chris was always available to help, whether calling me from the airport after I sent him a stressed out email or pulling late nights as I put final pieces together last minute.

In addition to Chris’ consulting, the structure that MBA Prep School’s online platform provides was key to my success. They have effectively compartmentalized self-reflection, and turned the application into a step-by-step process that is much more approachable then staring at a blank word-doc.

Also, Chris was able to leverage the expertise of the rest of his team for their school specific experience, and varied creative writing styles to help me get into my dream school. Additionally, Chris opened his own personal network to help answer career focused questions I had.

Chris truly went above and beyond what I expected from a consultant, acting as a friend and mentor who was truly invested in my success. The value Chris provided far outweighed the cost. Because of Chris’ help I will be attending Columbia Business School, but more than that, conversations with Chris helped me identify and solidify my long-term goals such that I am confident that I will get the most out of my MBA experience.
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If you're serious about getting into b-school...
June 03 | 2012

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       By Anonymous joined: October 23, 2011 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive School Package   Consultant:  Tyler Cormney
It felt like the odds were against me for getting into business school, especially with an unconventional background, inconsistent career history, lower GMAT score, unemployment gap, questionable letters of recommendation, etc. Yet, Tyler @ Tyler Cormney Consulting was able to help me tell a cohesive story that really seemed to represent who I was and not some cookie-cutter applicant. This story not only gave me a clear direction for my essays but also thoroughly prepared me for my interviews and my resume. After meeting Tyler, my doubts of getting into b-school quickly faded.

Tyler’s gift goes beyond story-telling. He’s an incredible coach.

•Tyler is committed to your success. I was up against very tight deadlines, throwing last minute curve balls at Tyler, yet he managed to squeeze in multiple revisions for my essays even when he was probably slammed with dozens of other essays. Even when you’re not in a meeting with him, you know Tyler is looking out for you. Knowing my MBA focus was social entrepreneurship, Tyler sent me a relevant HBR article to give me inspiration while I wrote my essays. And when I’d send emails with various b-school questions, Tyler would immediately reply with great advice. He truly does care.

•He’ll push you to the very end. When I got waitlisted at my dream school, Tyler stuck with me and walked me through the next steps. Even when I didn’t want to retake the GMAT, he highly encouraged me to go for it—and thank goodness because I scored 50 points higher. While going through the essay writing process, there were times when I would get sick of looking at my essays, but our conversations would refuel me with better ideas that kept me going. And that’s just what you’ll need during this demanding (yet incredibly rewarding) process. I got off the waitlist-- RESULT--> in at my DREAM SCHOOL!

•He’ll keep you accountable and on target each step of the way. We didn’t waste any time. Our conversations were very focused. At the end of each meeting, Tyler told me what to prepare for the next meeting so as to keep on track with all the things that I needed to get done in the short amount of time I had. It’s a miracle I got everything done on time, especially since I started late.

•His feedback is very thorough. Essay revisions went beyond grammar and spell-check. Tyler gave dozens of comments suggesting new ideas on how to improve a sentence/paragraph. I knew that Tyler was really reading my essays, not just proofing them.

•Last, but definitely not least, as a great coach, Tyler saw me for me. When I began looking for an admissions consultant, I had spoken to several of the larger consulting firms, and their reps told me that I would need to tweak my background because it did not “fit” in with the other applicants. After hearing my story and reading my profile, Tyler told me that I had a unique voice, and that I should keep it, not change it. That’s when I knew I had found the right person. He doesn’t need to “tweak” or create some fake persona for your application because he really hears you.

I can’t say enough good things about MBA Prep School. This series is incredibly organized and well thought-out. If you don’t have the resources to spend on getting individualized time with Tyler, I would say that this is the next best thing. Trust me, I read quite a few b-school application books, but none compare to the thoroughness and thoughtfulness of what is required to get a stellar application together. Most importantly, MBA Prep School will help you find your own answers to WHY an MBA and carefully map your career aspirations. I thought I had these down before I started the MBA Prep School videos and exercises, but after watching the videos and doing some of the exercises, my answers grew clearer.

Result: Accepted to my DREAM school and 2 others. Couldn’t be happier!

T- I don’t know how I would have done it without you. Thank you.
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MBAPrepSchool -- I was ultimately admitted to Wharton and Kellogg
January 13 | 2012

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       By CAMBA13 joined: December 15, 2010 | 8 | 1 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive School Package  
I thought I’d throw out another name that I haven’t seen mentioned on this thread as an alternative to the larger admissions consulting firms everyone is talking about: Tyler Cormney. Tyler used to work for a large brand name consulting firm specializing in top 5 schools but spun out on his own a couple years back. I was fortunate enough to embark on the admissions process with adequate scores, grades and work experience, but I had no idea how to navigate the application process itself. Tyler and I worked on my application together for about three months; he was always patient, insightful and responsive. We carefully selected essay topics to help distinguish me from the masses (I was otherwise a white male working in finance that went to a top tier undergraduate institution . . about as generic as you can get in b-school admissions speak). I was ultimately admitted to Wharton and Kellogg and waitpooled at Stanford GSB, which I thought was a phenomenal outcome. I had a number of friends apply to school at the same time as me that I perceived to be stronger applicants (750+ GMATs, Phi Beta Kappa, bulge bracket work experience) who were rejected from these same schools. I think this is a true testament of the value of Tyler’s services. I’ve already encouraged a number of friends to work with Tyler in the future and I would strongly recommend him to anyone considering working with a consultant. Feel free to message me with questions.
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MBA PrepSchool -- I got into my top choice school with a scholarship
January 13 | 2012

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       By stationc joined: August 13, 2010 | 23 | 4 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive School Package  
I just wanted to chime into the discussion and mention the consultant I used, which I don't think anyone has discussed yet. Like many of you, I took many companies up on the free initial consultation - I think I spoke with consultants from MBAmission and Admit Advantage. I was referred to Tyler Cormney (http://tylercormney.com/) by a colleague, and I eventually chose to work with him.

I started the process pretty early - I took the GMAT in May and started working with Tyler soon after. We spent probably the first 2 months working on my story, goals, personality/leadership strengths and weaknesses, etc. - basically, all the building blocks. With that ironed out early on, essay writing became significantly easier, and I firmly believe that is where I got the most value from Tyler. He really took the time to get to know me as a person, and that helped him mold my story.

In terms of essay editing, I found him to be very helpful and prompt as well - I write a lot of lengthy (and difficult to understand) sentences, so he really helped there, as well as making sure that the entire thing made sense as a whole. I did a mock interview with him too, and he did lots of research beforehand to make sure that he asked questions that the school's admissions officers typically ask.

Anyhow, if any of you have questions about Tyler, I'd be happy to answer them - I got into my top choice school with a scholarship, so the results definitely show.
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Strongly recommend Tyler Cormney
February 07 | 2012

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       By skier555 joined: October 24, 2011 | 4 | 6 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - got into all
This review is for:  Comprehensive School Package  
For those interested in hiring a consultant, I would strongly recommend Tyler Cormney of MBA Prep School. He was punctual, honest, concise, and realistic. We spent a few months working together on applications to two Top 10 MBA Programs, and I was admitted to both programs.

I had several free ‘assessment’ calls with different consultants. I think the biggest difference that Tyler brought to the table was his crafted approach – I had the feeling on all the other initial calls that many other consultants and larger firms had a more ‘cookie-cutter’ approach. Tyler really took the time to get to know me personally and different strengths I could leverage in my application. He was very accessible throughout the process. There was a lot of prep work on my end, but as long as you put in the time and effort, Tyler will too and you will reap the benefits.

Tyler has his MBA from a top program as well as a degree in creative writing – I believe the latter helped me significantly in my essays so that they stood out from the crowd. He does not write them for you, but he provided me with great feedback – specifically, I was having trouble identifying points of differences that Adcoms would find valuable, as well as coming up with a career ‘story’ that made sense given my interests and prior work experience. Tyler was able to help me pick my best experiences and craft them into meaningful stories. He also assisted with different ways of making points so that I was able to stay within the essay length guidelines. We spent hours and hours on them and I was very happy with the result. There is NO way I would have gotten to the same final product without Tyler’s guidance.

It was a bit tough for me to digest the fee at first, but in retrospect I think the value that Tyler provided was well worth the investment. To me the biggest value-add was the essay editing. We also spent a lot of time on assessing my strengths, picking target schools, and interview and resume prep. To those applicants who are finding it difficult to come with a concrete “story” that makes sense, or who are struggling with essay writing or having issued with self-reflection, I would encourage you to try MBA Prep School.

Additionally, MBA Prep School has a comprehensive online forum with seminars and tools for everything related to MBA applications – from selecting target schools to nailing the interview, and everything in between. I believe access to this online resource can also be purchased separately from the traditional hourly or comprehensive consultant fee. This would be useful if you are a particularly strong writer or have some really concrete stories already in mind – otherwise, I would go with the comprehensive package. As I said before, it’s my opinion the biggest value-add was the essay prep and editing.

Overall, it was a great experience. My outcome was very positive as I went 2/2 on acceptances. Though even if I went 0/2, I still would have been pleased with my applications as I felt with Tyler’s help I did absolutely everything in my power to make them as strong as possible.

I’d be happy to give more feedback or advice if necessary, so feel free to PM me if you want more info.
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