Stacy Blackman Admissions Consulting Reviews
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Stacy Blackman

We have helped thousands of MBA applicants reach their business school goals, and we can help you, too.

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Stacy Blackman is the best!
November 16 | 2014

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       By Anonymous joined: November 16, 2014 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Meredith
I signed for a 4 school comprehensive package with SBC and got accepted into my first choice school (top 5). I spent just over a month working with my consultant, Meredith. I honestly do not think I could have made this happen without her help. She took my pedestrian application to a very competitive one. She is very knowledgable in terms of what certain schools are looking for. She would even review my work over the weekends when I needed a short turnaround. She understood my situation fully and helped me bring out the plus points in my story and this resulted in a stellar application and an acceptance to my dream school. I highly recommend SBC services and especially Meredith if you are looking for some help and want to take your application to another level.
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Got into Columbia with the help of SBC!!!
November 10 | 2014

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       By Anonymous joined: November 10, 2014 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Sherry Holland
I had been through this process before. Three years ago, I had applied to the University of Michigan, Duke, and UCLA. I was denied admission from all three schools. This time around, I knew I had to do something drastically different and decided to invest in a consultant to help me.

I was definitely skeptical of the MBA consultants out there. This was also going to be a huge cost investment so I wanted to be sure I would be paired with someone I trusted and felt comfortable with. I interviewed at least 5 consultants, including consultants from SBC, MBAMission, and Aringo. I had a list of tough questions for each of them. After speaking with Sherry Holland from SBC for five minutes, I already knew I wanted to work with her versus all the others I interviewed. Being a Duke admissions counselor for over 4 years, Sherry's input seemed invaluable -- and it absolutely was.

I purchased the 4 school package with SBC and Sherry helped me with the whole process from start to finish. First, she helped me strategize which schools I should apply for. I actually would not even have applied to Columbia Early Decision if it weren't for her recommendation, as I had thought this was a school that was out of my league! She also helped me brainstorm topics for each essay and gave me great feedback on my essays, resume, and practice interview. Sherry was also FANTASTIC at getting back to me at a timely manner (despite the fact that we were working on different coasts!) and even accommodated to my schedule by working weekends to get me back feedback during crunch time. I would say that I'm an extremely demanding and tough client (for example, I sent her ~10 drafts of one of my essays), but Sherry certainly surpassed all of my highest expectations.

I could not have asked for a better consultant. Thank you Sherry for helping me get into this amazing school. I could not have done this without you and this was absolutely worth the investment. I highly highly recommend Sherry Holland!
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Going to CBS thanks to SBC!
November 10 | 2014

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       By Anonymous joined: March 17, 2013 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Aliceson Robinson
I had a very positive experience with Stacy Blackman. I found them to be professional, realistic, and overall a real support - they injected an element of rigor into how I approached my essays and applications. I don't think I could have done it without them!

I was paired up with Aliceson Robinson who had a similar background to me. After our initial conversation, I felt we were a good match - she understood me and motivations in a way others had not (I had done a few initial conversations with other admissions consultancies).

Aliceson was fantastic and was a pleasure to work with. I felt that she took the time to know the details of 'me' and because she knows the application process so well and the schools I was applying to, she could provide insights that benefitted my application. She reviewed my first set of essays countless times (and would remind me the "the next set of essays [would] be easier"...which they were!) and really helped me get through those humps when I thought I couldn't possible do anything more to my essays - she always came back with good ideas which made immediate improvements.

The guides and online resources that SBC has are extensive, those helped a lot when I was starting to write as there are sample essays, essay tips for each school, etc. I also appreciated the social media review that came with the comprehensive package - Paul helped develop a Social Review Strategy which I found was very helpful (for not just the application process but for my professional career too!).

In general, applying to business school is a very stressful process (especially if you are working). SBC helped me get through this in matching me with the right person and providing great resources. Very grateful and satisfied in my choice to use them!

My last two cents - If you are like me and have been considering whether admissions consultancy is worth the price tag...I would say it was totally worth it. If you really want to go to business school and you have a busy schedule like me (or even if you just have no idea about how to go about applying), SBC will be a tremendous help in keeping you in check and supporting you through the process.
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Low GMAT and Accepted!
November 04 | 2014

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       By Anonymous joined: November 4, 2014 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Bill Chonis
White Caucasian Male
GMAT: 610
Undergrad: A western state college
School of Choice: Ross Business School


As many do, I researched and researched all the consultants and weighed the costs of paying someone to help me through this tedious process of applying to b-school. After narrowing down to Aringo, MBA Mission, and Stacy Blackman, I ended on Stacy. This was no mistake and am ever so grateful for Bill Chionis and his
expertise in helping me. As I interviewed all of the consultants, the one thing that stood out to me about SB is the fact that they were direct with me. I spoke with Esther Magna and told her my GMAT score, she simply stated, "we can't help you get into a top tier full time program". Ha, I had taken the GMAT 3 times and knew my score was weak, but had 5 years work experience and a lot of extra curricular activities. I knew I wouldn't make it into a top 10 school full time, so because of my weak GMAT score, I strategically went with a top school that offered a Weekend program. This way I knew my chance was better.
Why I liked SB was that there was no BS, she was direct, no trying to just make a sale, and set proper expectations. Comparing to another consultant who I won't name, they told me, sure we can help you get into a top tier school regardless of GMAT score, although nice to hear, it's unrealistic. SB is realistic and helped me work with what score I had.
After deciding on SB, I was paired with Bill. He was and is always prompt in returning emails, most of the time same day unless it was for an essay review. Again, Bill was direct, realistic and helped me map out in words what I wanted to say in the essay. He was an excellent coach when it came to the interview prep. I probably spent 3 hours or more with him between 2 or 3 session to prep for my interview.
The experience was great, and the day I received the call from Ross, made this long trek of applying to b-school all worth while. I highly recommend SB, and would highly suggest the comprehensive package. If you have a low GMAT score, they can't work miracles, but can set you proper expectations. Very pleased!
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SBC is the best on the block!
November 03 | 2014

1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful
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       By mblowell joined: April 14, 2014 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Meredith
When I began my business school application process, I was skeptical of both my chances of getting admitted to a top program, as well as what (if anything) an admissions consultant could do to help. Due to my low original GMAT attempt, and college GPA, I decided that it would at least be good to peruse the market and shop around to get a feel for what an admissions consultant could bring to the table.

After spending about 2 weeks talking to 6 different firms, I finally spoke with Esther from Stacy Blackman Consulting (SBC). Besides informing me of SBC’s superior services, I was impressed with how Esther had taken the time before we got on the phone to really analyze and understand my background, as well as my goals and objectives (something other firms had done half-heartedly). Just based off of our initial conversation, I could tell that SBC was the spot for me and that they had clearly specialized in getting ‘dreamers’ ,like myself, into top MBA programs. After our initial discussion, Esther set me up with Meredith, because we had similar backgrounds and post-MBA goals. After speaking with both of these ladies, I was sold, and knew that if I had a shot at getting into a top program, SBC was going to be a big reason why.

Meredith was AMAZING, from start to finish! I really leaned on her throughout the process, and time and time again, she was able to help me through whatever issue I faced. After looking back on our 6 months of working together, I broke down what I feel were the biggest advantages of both Meredith and SBC below (in no particular order):

1. Developing my story: In my research of business school, I knew that this was going to be important, but I had no idea how difficult it could be, especially without any experience in doing so. From day 1, Meredith worked with me to develop a concise and compelling story that she knew would appeal to ad-comms and rang true with my actual experiences and career objectives. In addition, as I mentioned, when we first started working together, I did have some weaknesses in my profile (mostly related to my academic and GMAT performances). Meredith knew how to develop my story to focus on my positive work experience and leadership qualities, while also addressing my academic deficiencies. Once we were able to develop this story, it was a lot easier to complete the subsequent school applications.

2. Content (Resume & Essays): As evidenced by this review, I am not the most concise writer in the world! I am an extremely excitable and outgoing person, with a lot to say, but unfortunately, that needs to be tamed when applying to b-school, given essay word limits and the limited amount of time and space you have to convey your messages. Meredith helped me (tirelessly) to not only help me improve my writing skills, but also to structure my resume and essays in compelling ways that she knew would appeal to the ad-comms. I was quick about incorporating her suggestions and feedback, and she was just as receptive often getting me iterations of my essays in the same day! Knowing how responsive Meredith was, gave me the confidence that we would have the time to submit the strongest application possible to each school.

3. Application Strategy: After Meredith initially assessed my profile, she targeted specific areas that I would want to reinforce prior to hitting ‘submit’ on my applications. In particular, she encouraged me to continue to improve my GMAT, until I got a score (on the 3rd try) that she knew would help me get admitted to my target schools, and she also pointed out additional coursework and volunteer opportunities that she knew would make my profile more competitive. In addition, she was always willing to lend a hand when I was assessing which schools to apply to (and in which round / priority), and she leveraged SBC’s extensive network if there was ever a question about a school that she could not answer. Without Meredith helping me develop my application strategy, I would have been lost.

4. Confidence: Finally, and I think maybe most importantly, both Esther and Meredith instilled confidence in me and my goals from day 1. Based on my initial profile, other admissions firms were skeptical of my chances to get admitted to any program in the Top 25. Instead of focusing on the negative, SBC always encouraged me and focused on my potential, while being honest that there were areas of my profile that I needed to address. They assured me that if I worked hard enough to do so, by partnering with them, I could achieve my goal of admission to a top 10 program (which I would have never even considered prior to our engagement). It was so refreshing to work with people who believed in me, and I truly feel that had an effect on my outlook throughout the entire process. Rather than being skeptical of my chances, I had a partner throughout the entire process, who pushed me even higher than I thought I could go, which I feel really came across in my interviews and applications, ultimately helping me gain admission to my top choice school.

Overall, investing in an admissions consultant is a personal decision, but I would agree with some of the generic reviews that I read prior to hiring Meredith and SBC – the price of the consultant is small compared to the reward associated with getting into the school of your choice, and I can honestly say that, with the wealth of knowledge, experiences and positive culture associated with SBC, there isn’t a better firm in the marketplace today.
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Thank you SBC!
November 03 | 2014

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       By BrianRowe joined: November 3, 2014 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Meredith
I decided to use Stacy Blackman after researching various consulting admissions consulting firms and realizing that I would get the best possible service from SBC. The Comprehensive Service package truly lived up to its name, as I was able to ask them about any part of the process and receive knowledgeable answers quickly and efficiently. Meredith was a huge help with essay advice, constructing the theme of my application, and going through a complete mock interview. I had a great experience with Stacy Blackman, and couldn't be more excited that they helped me get into Fuqua, which was my first choice!
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Outstanding
October 15 | 2014

4 out of 4 people found the following review helpful
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       By Anonymous joined: June 25, 2013 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - got into all
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service  
A good business school application consultant may have some helpful tips, but an outstanding consultant not only has brilliant suggestions but also possesses a keen intuitive ability to identify your deeply personal dreams and then supply you with the perfect framework to go after them. SBC's Lisa Chen is beyond any doubt in the "outstanding" category.

I knew I wanted to apply to business school but had absolutely no idea how much stronger my personal narrative could be UNTIL my first conversation with Lisa. Within five minutes she identified my strengths and weaknesses and gave me clear-cut, actionable ideas on how to make myself a significantly stronger applicant - and all this happened literally within the first five minutes of our very first call! Needless to say, from there on out I proceeded through the application process with supreme confidence thanks to her. Her feedback and insights on all aspects of my application from essays to resume to data form were impeccably well thought out and always added tremendous value. If you are truly serious about presenting the best possible application you can to business school, hire Lisa. You will NOT regret it.
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I highly recommend Stacy Blackman
September 16 | 2014

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       By Anonymous joined: September 6, 2010 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Carol Grayson
I had decided to apply for INSEAD MBA but I had very little time for my application as my GMAT was also scheduled around the same time. I did an intense research to choose the right admission consultant and almost everyone recommended Stacy Blackman Consulting (SBC). I signed up for it and thank God I did. The most difficult part of an MBA application is to stay focussed especially when time is a constrain and SBC ensures that you are.

Carol Grayson was my consultant at Stacy Blackman. Her prior experience as a member of admission committee at INSEAD was very helpful for me to understand how a Business School outside the US had a different approach and perspective. She helped me to choose the right words, right stories from my experience and then structure the entire application as a whole. I agree with others that the number of drafts of an essay can easily go to 15 or more, but every single update makes it a lot better. This also shows how patient and committed the SBC consultants are because it is extremely difficult to make little improvements in almost perfect essays to make them absolutely perfect.

SBC uses a very organised approach and the entire application process is divided into intuitive and logical steps. Using this step by step approach allows you to build a strong application in an efficient manner. Perhaps this is the reason why everyone (including me now, yes I got into the only B-School I applied to) recommends Stacy Blackman Consulting.
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HBS Bound - Dawn Clare was AMAZING!
August 13 | 2014

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       By akim747 joined: August 12, 2014 | 2 | 5 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Dawn Clare
I decided to hire an MBA Admissions consultant because I knew I had the potential to get into a top school (solid GPA, acceptable GMAT, tons of leadership, and significant upward progress in my career thus far) but I came from a somewhat untraditional background, where I had few resources to consult within the work place or from friends and family, so needed help guiding me on the process. I had one shot to get in as I was in the latter half of my twenties and the time was now or never. I didn't want to look back wondering what if....

I had spoken to a few people I knew who had used Stacy Blackman and MBA Admissions. Both were pricey though and I was unsure if it was worth it. From my first call with Esther Magna though, I was blown away by how she was able to dissect my strengths and potential weak areas to work on as through an admissions officer was reviewing my file. I liked her candor, ability to converse with my about my fears, the process, the costs, etc. She recommended 3 potential SBC consultants to me and I ultimately chose Dawn Clare based on her prior client feedback and personal approach.

On our first call, she clearly communicated her style, approach and how we would work together to ensure it was a good fit. I had a stressful job as it was, and she ensured she would guide me through deadlines but not be another boss or nagging parent. I also liked her focus and ability to separate out how the schools were different and how to approach each one.

She also guided me through info sessions and what schools I should consider. As an expert, she was very informed as to what would play to my personality and strengths.

I decided to apply to 6 schools, 3 using SBC and 3 on my own. Since rankings matter, 5 were the top 5 and I chose a 6th that is ranked #10-12 depending on the ranking. Dawn helped me create a comprehensive brand and strategy, which was the cornerstone of my application. She also made a deadline chart and adjusted it accordingly when huge projects came up at work. I aimed for Round 1, but it soon became clear that in order to do a good job, Round 2 for all of them was of going to be necessary.

Having the SBC resources of sample essays, sample resume formats, sample recommender guides, etc. was so invaluable to me! I am the type of person that needs to read other things to get my creative juices flowing. Using this as a framework, I could then ask Dawn all of my silly and random questions. We went through an outline process that was helpful in framing the essay and did most of the revisions there prior to the essay writing. My biggest issue is not being consice (point in case by this blog post) so she helped me stay within the word limits by forcing me to cut my outlines down too.

While at times her feedback was blunt, it was always timely and on point and allowed me to keep things moving. In the end, I was invited to interview at 5 of the 6 schools. She helped do a mock interview for one, which allowed me to prep like it was the real deal. Then she also put me in touch for the mock team based discussion, which greatly calmed me nerves about the format.

I ended up receiving acceptances from all 5 of those schools, some with merit scholarships! She even helped walk me through my choices as I was ultimately deciding between my top 2. I am delighted to say that I am going to HBS.

Dawn really does care about her clients and is able to see what sets them apart, even if you don't always know it. I would highly recommend her to anybody. She is selective in her clients, and only takes on a limited number that she knows she can truly help and commit to, which I greatly respect.
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Thank Goodness for Caryn!
July 16 | 2014

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       By Anonymous joined: April 23, 2014 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Some, but not all
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Caryn Altman
I am so grateful to have worked with Caryn on my business school applications. I was a completely naive applicant before Caryn clued me in to all the nuances of MBA applications I would never have known otherwise. I began working with Caryn several months before applications were due and thank goodness, because it took a very long time for us to develop and refine my career goals, but with Caryn's help, they eventually evolved to be well structured and consistent with my past experiences. We went through many many revisions of my resume, essays, and data forms, and Caryn was attentive and helpful throughout the entire process. I especially appreciated her honesty regarding my selection of schools. She made sure I had a good range of schools from stretch to safety, and that I picked only schools I'd be happy attending.
Mostly, I appreciated having Caryn available for all the random, minute questions that constantly popped through my head during the process. Caryn always had a good answer and her knowledge of the process and insight into adcom helped keep my anxiety down and allowed me to focus on the goal. Thank goodness for Caryn!
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