Stacy Blackman Consulting Admissions Consulting Reviews
    Number of reviews [255]      Average Rating:       (4.9/5)
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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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Highly satisfied with Stacy Blackman experience
May 14 | 2012

8 out of 8 people found the following review helpful
       By Anonymous joined: May 10, 2012 | 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:  Caryn Altman
Caryn Altman was my consultant at Stacy Blackman. She previously served on the admissions committee at Kellogg and I felt that she had many good insights from having worked on that side of things. I felt very comfortable with her from the first time we spoke which is why I selected her to be my SBC consultant in the first place. We spent a great deal of time on the phone at the very beginning, because I had a few "blemishes" that I needed to overcome. We came up with stories that felt great to me and we mapped out all of the essays in advance so that writing them became a lot easier. We went through many, many drafts of my essays. We had 14 drafts of my first set of essays, and I also used my client liaison to review a few of those essays. The next school was much easier. Caryn supported me all the way. I think by the time I got my acceptance letters I expected her to come to school with me - she was just completely part of the team. I also used the SBC essay guides and thought they were a great compliment to working with my consultant. Great tips that I could just turn to at any time when I needed inspiration. Caryn very conscientiously checked in with me all along the way when I procrastinated and went silent. She gave me pep talks and great information. I used no other resources and walked away with three admits. I am going to Columbia next year.
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HBS-bound thanks to Stacy Blackman Consulting!
February 08 | 2013

8 out of 9 people found the following review helpful
       By Anonymous joined: February 6, 2013 | 1 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - school of my dreams
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Lisa (SBC)
I highly recommend Stacy Blackman Consulting. My experience with them was very positive from beginning to end. I have an interesting background in some ways, but also an average background and very average numbers. The team and particularly my consultant, Lisa, took my information and helped me understand how to present my stories and background in the best possible way. Looking back I know that I submitted an application that represented me - BUT the story is told in a way that I would not have thought of on my own. I was admitted to 3 of the 4 schools that I applied to (Stanford was a no.) and going in I really thought that even one admit was a dream.

Lisa was funny, damn smart and I really respect and trust her - all key to our successful relationship. I used their resource center a lot as a reference tool as well.
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This is an investment, not a cost
May 02 | 2012

7 out of 7 people found the following review helpful
       By Anonymous joined: July 23, 2011 | 2 | 7 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - got into all
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Bill Chonis
I initially inquired about an admissions consulting service because I wasn't sure how to approach my essays and there was concern about my undergraduate GPA.

After my free consultation with Bill Chonis of Stacy Blackman, I decided to work with Bill on an hourly basis. We clicked right off the bat, and yes, chemistry is extremely important for someone to have with his/her consultant. I found Bill to be extremely professional, insightful, and because of the application deadlines I had to meet, very timely and responsive throughout the whole process.

Bill had the patience of saint with me in regards to writing my essays as it took awhile for me to find my “voice.”(I never thought that Bill was trying to get more hours out of me since I was on an hourly rate. And Yes, I am a very cynical person. For the five hours I was charged from Stacy Blackman, I probably worked with Bill 6.5-7 hrs.)

On a side note, Stacy Blackman does have some great tips on a PDF that you can send to your recommenders. I would get my hands on this.

Before hiring Bill, I read many reviews on GMATCLUB of the various consulting services and although the majority of the reviews are positive for most of the consulting companies, you’ll always find a few negative ones in the bunch. I think most of the individuals who wrote the negative reviews are the ones who didn’t get into their school of choice. Keep in mind, these consultants aren’t miracle workers. Some just give you the best chance of getting into your school of choice. However, I do believe that a great admissions consultant manages the expectations of his or her client.

I am giving a five star review of Bill Chonis of Stacy Blackman Consulting. I have no idea how the other consultants are over at Stacy Blackman, but I assure you that Bill is an excellent admissions consultant. My advice is to make sure you click with your admission’s consultant before moving forward and at least talk to two different consultants before making a decision.
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Thanks to Denise and SBC: Booth, here I come
July 16 | 2013

7 out of 7 people found the following review helpful
       By montanhu joined: July 16, 2013 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Denise Handa
I am starting at Booth this fall thanks to Denise and the SBC team! I knew I was a solid candidate: two years bulge bracket I bank following by 1 year global PE firm. I just didn’t want to take the chance on applying on my own. I had too much on the line, as there were a couple colleagues who were dinged across the board last season. I was worried that B schools are more critical of finance candidates.

Denise was brilliantly dedicated. Late night phone calls. She had extraordinary creativity with her ability to discover the unusual from my background (which I thought was fairly high performing but vanilla). The amount of knowledge of how the process from the inside was astounding. I could have never known on my own.

I also had Caryn review my application and give me feedback from the Flight Test. Caryn was formerly in a top program Admissions office so, again, I felt very fortunate. I was accepted to 3 of my 4 programs because Denise and the SBC team kept me focused on what was most important every step of the way. She, Caryn and Maggie were fully engaged with me. I remember essay draft #14 and Denise was still giving me 1:00 am responses that were on target.

SBC has the rare combo of knowledge from AdCom on their team AND genuine commitment to their clients. It was the BEST investment.
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1 Commented by neverstop on May 30, 2014
"I am an executive leader with 13 years of executive management experience who applied to several EMBA programs only to be denied two years in a row. I was very discouraged and frustrated when a friend recommended I contact Stacy Blackman Consulting. I contacted SBC and found everyone in the firm kind and helpful. During the first phone call with my consultant, Sherry Holland, I was sure that she is the one who going to make it happen. Her support, expertise and guidance were impeccable. She was a confident and a secure base for me as well as a knowledgeable consultant who put all her time to ensure my success. This year with Sherry's help and rigorous preparation for my interview, I sailed through it with confidence and was admitted to my dream school without even having to take the GMAT! Without Sherry's help, I know I would not have been admitted. I recommend SBC and Sherry Holland if you want a true professional who will support you and always be honest with you. She always said: " I am going to tell you what you need to hear, not necessarily what you want to hear in order to make you a stronger candidate.It is proven to me that no other consulting firm understands the admission process like SBC dose."
 
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Highly recommend
July 18 | 2013

7 out of 7 people found the following review helpful
       By Anonymous joined: July 2, 2012 | 1 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Esther Magna
I just wanted to take a minute to fill you all in on my experience with SB. I wouldn’t take the time to do this unless I really felt positively about my experience. I signed up with the firm in 2012 and was paired with Esther Magna, my consultant. I knew from the beginning that I wanted to use a consultant to assist with my applications since my GPA was really low (<3.0).

I applied to three schools and hired SB for all of them. Esther was great! I was genuinely worried about being accepted to any of them, but Esther really helped me identify the strong points of my background and experience, and ensure I consistently stressed those to the admissions committees. I know I can be overbearing with the frequency that I send emails, but Esther was fantastic (she may be more addicted to her Blackberry than I am!). I ALWAYS received a prompt reply with helpful feedback.

My background is not especially distinctive - white male, finance background, etc. - but with Esther’s help, I was able to craft an application strategy that stressed my attributes that I believe differentiated me from other applicants. She also had personal connections with former members of various admissions committees who reviewed my essays and critiqued them in advance – this was a huge help.

One last comment. Although the price of SB can be intimidating, as it was for me, hiring the firm turned out to be a great decision financially in the long run. I ended up receiving a scholarship for a full year’s tuition at a top 10 US MBA school. Clearly the expense of a consultant can be high, but it paid off for me big time with Esther.
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Stacy Blackman Review
May 03 | 2012

5 out of 5 people found the following review helpful
       By Anonymous joined: May 1, 2012 | 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:  Margaret Strother
I was skeptical about using a consultant, but after speaking to a friend who attended HBS, I realized that it is too difficult to understand what not to write without advice from someone who understands the industry. I picked Stacy Blackman based on some articles that quoted Stacy in BusinessWeek.

After an initial meeting, I arranged for the comprehensive service. My consultant, Margaret, helped me to clarify my own vision and pushed me to clear up my message. Her advice was instrumental in my success. I was interviewed at 3 top 10 schools and was admitted to my top two choices. I really couldn't have done it without the guidance of my consultant. As far as the company overall, several other employees reached out to make sure I was moving along in the process and didnt have questions or concerns. At no point did I feel as though I didn't have someone to reach out to if I had a question or concern.

In terms of other reviews who mention managing your own expectations, I definitely agree. A consultant will not help you create experience that you don't have. However, mine did help me to focus my application in ways that allowed me to showcase the experience that I did have.

Highly recommend Stacy Blackman.
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Very happy with Stacy Blackman
May 04 | 2012

5 out of 5 people found the following review helpful
       By Anonymous joined: May 4, 2012 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Some, but not all
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Margaret Strother
I was skeptical at first at the value of an MBA consultant, but after going through the process I am so happy I hired Stacy Blackman. I used Margaret to help me edit my essays only (hourly service) and she was amazing. She challenged me to think through the real meaning of my essays and my story and pushed me to answer the questions in the best ways. I would send her essays which I thought were done and she was great in telling me I needed more. I don't think I could have come out with better essays.

I applied to the top 2 schools and received interviews at both. I was accepted at one and waitlisted at the other. After I told Margaret I was waitlisted she gave me her advice on how to approach a waitlist even though our hours were over.

I've had an extremely professional and positive experience with SB. I think Stacy Blackman was instrumental in helping me effectively communicate my story and would recommend them to anyone.
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Highly Recommend Stacy Blackman
May 07 | 2012

5 out of 6 people found the following review helpful
       By Anonymous joined: May 4, 2012 | 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:  Dawn Clare
I enlisted Stacy Blackman for hourly services after writing my first set of essays and feeling dissatisfied with the end product – I wasn’t confident they’d get me into my dream school (one of H/S/W).

I was assigned a consultant named Dawn Clare. Her thoughts on content changes, structure and themes were spot on and took my app to the next level. She weeded out a couple 'weaker' content topics from my successes / set-backs essays (eg, weathering the recession - like most other applicants...) and had me focus my energy on some areas unique to me that I didn't necessarily think full essay worthy but turned out to be really great subjects and my favorite essays. She was also very helpful pushing me to clean house in terms of language, making my essays very crisp and action-oriented (and below the word limits, argh!). The final product really had a bow on it - highly polished and highly unified, which I think is just what admissions was looking for.

I also used Dawn for two hour long skype sessions that were EXTREMELY useful. Several of her questions were repeated in my real interview, but it was also just a great confidence-builder to interview with a complete stranger as opposed to a friend or relative.

I was accepted round 1. I do not think I would have been accepted if I’d submitted my essays without the changes Dawn suggested or if I hadn’t felt so good going into my interview. I highly recommend Stacy Blackman Consulting to anyone and especially Dawn Clare.
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Found the perfect consultant for me
May 22 | 2012

5 out of 6 people found the following review helpful
       By Anonymous joined: May 14, 2012 | 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:  John Naom
I signed up with Stacy Blackman after about a month of research. I spent a lot of time on the phone with several firms and when I was finally leaning towards Stacy, I then spent a good 7-10 days screening who I would specifically work with. I think this investment up front, making sure that I had the right consultant for me, was critical to me being really satisfied with my experience. I saw at least four bios of different consultants and spoke with three of them on the phone. When I spoke with my consultant, John, I knew I had found the right person for me to go through this experience with. All of the consultants that I spoke with were competent, smart, experienced, but I did not get as good of a sense that we would click. And I really wanted someone that I could communicate with, toss ideas around. So I proceeded with John and had a very good experience working with him. I also have to give props to Julie, who I worked with up front to get settled in. She was very patient and happy to spend the time with me to make sure it was right. I had little interaction with Ms. Blackman herself outside of a few emails, but I can say she runs a very tight organization. Ultimately I was happy with my choice but I think this is personal so you have to take the time to do your own research.
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1 Commented by neverstop on May 30, 2014
"I am an executive leader with 13 years of executive management experience who applied to several EMBA programs only to be denied two years in a row. I was very discouraged and frustrated when a friend recommended I contact Stacy Blackman Consulting. I contacted SBC and found everyone in the firm kind and helpful. During the first phone call with my consultant, Sherry Holland, I was sure that she is the one who going to make it happen. Her support, expertise and guidance were impeccable. She was a confident and a secure base for me as well as a knowledgeable consultant who put all her time to ensure my success. This year with Sherry's help and rigorous preparation for my interview, I sailed through it with confidence and was admitted to my dream school without even having to take the GMAT! Without Sherry's help, I know I would not have been admitted. I recommend SBC and Sherry Holland if you want a true professional who will support you and always be honest with you. She always said: " I am going to tell you what you need to hear, not necessarily what you want to hear in order to make you a stronger candidate.It is proven to me that no other consulting firm understands the admission process like SBC dose."
 
Stacy Blackman Consulting Review
May 16 | 2012

5 out of 5 people found the following review helpful
       By givemo joined: May 16, 2012 | 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:  Chadd (SBC)
I worked very hard to submit all of my applications in Round 1. I had help from 2 of my bosses at work who graduated from HBS and were willing to guide me. In Round 1 I submitted applications to Stanford and Columbia, and was completely burnt out. I decided to hire a consultant for Round 2. In Round 2 I worked with Chadd from Stacy Blackman. We worked on HBS, Chicago and Wharton. My results say a lot about the advantage that I gained by working with Chadd and Stacy Blackman Consulting. I was admitted only to the schools I worked on with them and also received a scholarship offer from Chicago. Needless to say I am pretty pleased with the outcome and give a lot of credit to the support and guidance I received. Although I think I was a strong applicant in many ways, it was hard for me to figure out what to write about and how to organize my thoughts. This is where the guidance was invaluable. Enough said.
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