Stacy Blackman Consulting Admissions Consulting Reviews
    Number of reviews [204]      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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Highest possible recommendation for Andy
March 31 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: March 31, 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:  Andy (SBC)
For round 1, I only applied to HBS and didn't use a consultant. I was well aware of consultants, but felt that I wanted to do the process on my own. I felt that using a consultant would make my application unauthentic. I didn't get in.

For round 2, I decided that I needed the help. I did my research and landed on SBC. I was paired up with Andy and couldn't have been happier with the outcome. I was admitted to Stanford and Wharton.

Andy was incredibly helpful in crafting my story. To my surprise, my application did not lose any authenticity. In fact, I felt like Andy was able to help me better tell my own story and ultimately helped give my application depth and personality. I picked Andy because of his experience in writing and editing, and it paid off. He always gave great edits and feedback in a very timely manner. I really can't say enough positive things about Andy and the help that he gave me. He's a great guy and a great consultant.

Coming from someone who consciously decided not to use a consultant for Round 1, the truth is in the facts. I was dinged on my own with HBS and was 2/2 with Andy's help.
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Sherry Holland -- Great experience AND I got in!
March 31 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: March 31, 2015 | 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 (SBC)
I had the pleasure of working with Sherry on my business school applications. She was a tremendous resource and fantastic consultant. From beginning to end, she kept me sane and guided me through the process with lots of encouragement and honest feedback. She was available whenever I needed her – from talking about application strategy to editing essays to interview prep. It was easy to find time to talk on the phone and she replied to e-mails often within a few hours.
Sherry gave me realistic advice and I valued her as both a supporter and honest critic. She helped me put together a cohesive application that told my story in my own voice. Beginning with my resume and how to navigating school networking events all the way through negotiating scholarships, Sherry was an expert guide and reviewer.
Beyond Sherry, I worked with other members of the Stacy Blackman team to get second opinions and blind reviews. Sherry was an advocate for my application and was working to help me put together the best narrative possible and was open to incorporating ideas from others to make sure we achieved this goal.
It was absolutely worth the investment to work with Sherry and the Stacy Blackman team. Sherry was one of the first people I called to thank when I was admitted to Yale SOM!
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Wharton-bound, made possible by Andy!
March 30 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: August 25, 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:  Andy (SBC)
In October, I decided to apply to business school. I knew I would need to stay focused, organized and motivated in order to meet the R2 deadlines for four schools. I also knew that I was a subpar writer and lacked confidence in marketing myself at the level that top business schools often expect. I discovered SBC and met Andy, who graciously took on the task of helping me with my resume and essays.
 
I really enjoyed working with Andy, because he offers direct and honest feedback. If a topic would not work, he would say so rather than spending time trying to make it work. Additionally, Andy is incredibly responsive over e-mail, even on weekends. He has a 24-hour response goal, but he was always able to turnaround my essays ahead of this goal. Lastly, Andy is VERY patient. There were many times when I really struggled to connect the essay prompt with a good story, but Andy did not give up on me by just telling me what to do. Instead, Andy offered constant guidance as I slowly worked through idea after idea after idea and version after version after version of the same essay. Even as the R2 deadlines were fast approaching, Andy stayed available and supportive to the point where I started an essay three days before the deadline (not recommended) and was still able to get a strong essay together with a day to spare!
 
In the end, results speak for itself, as I will now be attending my dream school - Wharton!
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SBC - Caryn Altman is a Rockstar!
March 26 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: March 26, 2015 | 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
After working extensively with Caryn Altman of Stacey Blackman Consulting (SBC), I can honestly say that she went far above and beyond my expectations. I signed up for the ‘All-in-one’ package for 3 schools and specifically picked Caryn after reading other raving reviews about her ability to get students into their dream school and she did not disappoint! Of the four schools that I applied to, I was admitted to 3 (including my #1 choice) and waitlisted on 1 despite my low undergrad GPA and average GMAT (at best) for the top-tier schools that I was applying to. To be honest, I figured they were all reach schools when I initially started the application process however after Caryn helped me create my ‘brand,’ my confidence significantly increased. Caryn was available and responsive to emails within a day (often times within an hour) and was able to walk me through the application process each step of the way. The best part about Caryn was that she is honest, and gives it to you straight. She will not hesitate to tell you to completely overhaul an essay, and also provides invaluable advice on non-essay fields as well. Coming into the application process, I was completely unaware of the amount of hard work and dedication that would be required and Caryn’s ability to guide me until I had a seemingly flawless application greatly reduced the stress of the application process. Overall, I am 100% confident that I would not have gotten into my dream school had it not been for Caryn, and am completely satisfied with every aspect of her work. I highly encourage any prospective MBA student to work with SBC and more importantly, with Caryn Altman (but do note that she is very popular so you will need to sign-up early)!
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Highest possible recommendation for Paul
March 26 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: February 13, 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:  Paul (SBC)
I could not recommend Paul more highly.

I consulted with Paul as part of my round 2 application process for GSB, which is the only school I applied to (and which I was admitted to!).

I reached out to SBC because I had heard exceptional things about their service through friends. After doing an initial call with Esther, I did a little diligence, learned of their shockingly high GSB admit rate, and agreed to connect with Paul, a GSB alum who worked with the admissions committee as a student, who is still part of their alumni interview network, and who has advised many students successfully with their GSB applications.

My situation was also unique in that I had done a fair amount of work on my application (written essay drafts, found recommenders, etc.) beforehand over the course of one week of long nights, but was unsatisfied with the results I was seeing. Paul immediately turned it all around for me. He single-handedly pushed me to develop the necessary self-awareness to write compelling GSB essays, helped hone my stories and anecdotes, explained in detail the way that applications are read and reviewed (and what they are looking for), and shared best practices around style, content, and tone that would simply be unknowable except by consulting with someone as knowledgeable as Paul.

Paul was readily accessible for follow-up calls, reads, moments of frustration, and I was always 100% confident that he would make it a priority to get back to me quickly, and with succinct, clear and practical advice that I could act on immediately.

Stylistically, I felt Paul was pretty unique. My brother also used an admission's consultant (10 years ago) before attending HBS, but his consultant was extraordinarily micro-managerial and my brother ended up writing something like 15-20 drafts of each essay over the course of 4 months as a result -- it worked but it was painful. In contrast, Paul's style is very much above the board. He tells you when you're going off track (in a nice way), he helps you hone your strategy and encourages you to make sure your strategy is compelling before putting pen to paper, and he ensures that what your application walks the right balance between representing yourself most effectively and being humble and authentic (not an easy task). He is not focused on editing your vocabulary or grammatical choices, or at least he wasn't with me. I ended up putting together an application that I felt very excited about in just a few weeks and with only a few hours of Paul's help (and many long nights of working on my own, but with clear vision of what I was doing thanks to Paul).

Paul also helped me prepare for my interview on late notice. We did a preliminary 30 minute call, he gave me some high-level guidance and told me to prepare -- I did -- and then two days later we did a 1-hour mock interview. The mock interview went well (thanks to Paul's preliminary tips on how to prepare), my real interview went well (and shared a lot with the mock interview Paul conducted), and it all worked out in the end!

Great guy, great service, very happy with the result, obviously... highly recommend!
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Wonderful Experience!
March 24 | 2015

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       By mjg27 joined: March 24, 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:  Sherry (SBC)
I used Stacy Blackman Consulting's hourly services after a friend recommended them to me. She used the comprehensive package but I was not able to afford that so started using them after I had a list of schools I was interested in and had started writing the essays. I worked with Sherry, who was incredibly helpful, on overall application strategy (briefly), essay review (45%), and interview prep (45%). She also was able to talk me through what to highlight from my career and extracurriculars, and how to tailor each application to each school specifically. I got the flu a few weeks before the application deadline so was running behind on the essays, but Sherry still managed to fit in editing my many essays. While the comprehensive package would have been valuable, the hourly services were just what I needed and working with Sherry was great!

I was interviewed at 4 out of the 6 schools I applied to (and was really reaching for 4 of the schools I applied to in terms of test scores) and so far have been accepted at 3 of those schools including Fuqua. Thank you Sherry!
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Lisa Anderson at Stacy Blackman Helped me Get into Booth, Stern, Anderson and Foster
March 20 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: July 8, 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:  Lisa (SBC)
I cannot say enough thanks to Lisa Anderson at Stacy Blackman! She was the best! Without her, I wouldn't have had opportunity to pick from Booth, Stern, Anderson and Foster (with scholarship at both Anderson and Foster).

As an older applicant who is trying to make a career switch, I was initially very discouraged after talking to some other consultants who beat m age disadvantage to no end. I didn't think i would have much a chance of getting into any of these top schools, especially my post-MBA career goal is non-traditional as well. Lisa was honest yet extremely supportive from the beginning. She made me feel at ease with my career path and school selection, and I didn't even think about my age issue after talking to her (while it was my biggest concern.) There is a lot of work and stress involved in the whole application process, so I am glad that I had her as my mentor and cheerleader the entire time.

She was very responsive and timely in all of our communications. I had something for her EVERYDAY and she always got back to me before the end of my work day. We went back and forth about 15 times on my first application essay. And she did not simply edit the flow/words of my essays - she actually made me think harder about my goals and aspirations, and how to present them in a cohesive manner. She was also very accommodating with my time even though we are two time zones apart. She always let me chat with her in the evenings (for an hour each time) when it was more convenient for me after work. (This was very different from my initial experience with another consultant who refused to talk to me after business hours when she was hours ahead of me.)

After getting the admission offers from these schools, she was extremely patient in terms of listening to me making more evaluations on my schools and my goals. Her feedbacks were still timely and honest just as before.

I am so glad that I worked with Lisa. She was not just a consultant to me - I consider her my mentor. I owe my admission success to her.
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Would recommend to anyone
March 17 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: March 17, 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:  Margaret
I had a very positive experience with Stacy Blackman, and Margaret particularly. I did the hourly service and Margaret was extremely sensitive with my time and used it efficiently and with care. I liked that most of our communications were via email so we could respond to each other quickly.

The greatest strength in my opinion was helping you craft your own story. Margaret really listened to my experiences and helped me pull out relevant stories that would be compelling to admissions. One of my biggest concerns going into the consulting process was that my essays wouldn't sound "like me." That is the exact opposite of my experience here -- my essays were the best versions of my experiences and views, in my own voice. This was never compromised.

Margaret also assisted tremendously with prioritization. She told me when to move on from an essays that were 95% of the way there in order to spend time on essays that needed more work. This was helpful when coming up against deadlines, while working at a full-time job, as we all do.
Margaret was ruthless when managing her and my time - it was incredibly helpful!

I didn't notice a particular weakness, but my advice would be to take an inventory of where you think you might need the most help. I was very sensitive to the financial investment here, so I wanted to focus on the areas where I thought they could make the most impact. For example, I didn't have Margaret help too much with recommendations. I edited these myself and I'm very comfortable with how these turned out. This will differ with everyone, I'm sure, but worth thinking about where the consultant can add the most value for you.

Overall, highly recommend! They gave me a lot of confidence throughout the process that I was on the right track. I absolutely think they made a difference in my applications.
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Great Service, Real Value
March 17 | 2015

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       By far257 joined: August 2, 2011 | 44 | 12 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Some, but not all
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Erika (SBC)
Initially, I never considered hiring a consultant for the MBA application process. Being from a management consulting background with plenty of alumni contacts and strong senior support from my firm, why would I need one? At the end of this process, however, I was certainly glad I made the investment.

I applied to six schools and enlisted Erika's support for two of them, including Booth where I am pleased to be starting this coming fall.

Erika provided great and timely service to all of requests and helped me stay on track and on-target through the process. She provided great insight into what admissions committees look for and was able to bring a good level of school-specific knowledge as well. Overall, however, I found her greatest value-adds were as follows:

1) Erika was not afraid to tell me that I was wrong; she pushed me to course correct drastically midway through my Booth application, and while that was a difficult pill to swallow at the time, it undoubtedly paid off.

2) Erika did a great job managing my recommenders; she provided them key insights into what admissions committees look for and helped provide feedback I would not have been comfortable giving myself. This is something that benefited all my applications - not just the two I formally enlisted Erika's help with.

Beyond my personal experience with Erika, SBC's online wiki of resources was extremely helpful, and my now fiancee also leveraged a different SBC consultant and had great results (she, too, will be starting at Booth this fall).

Overall, I highly recommend Erika and SBC.
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Intimate Knowledge- Accepted to All!
March 17 | 2015

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       By Anonymous joined: March 17, 2015 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  Yes - got into all
This review is for:  Comprehensive Service   Consultant:  Maureen (SBC)
I embarked on my MBA application journey knowing that I needed someone to lean on for all application-related questions, large or small. I engaged Maureen because of her ties to and expertise with Tuck, my top choice. I was a middle of the road candidate and knew that her intimate knowledge of "what makes Tuck tick" could help me stand out from a very competitive pool of applicants. Looking back, I feel like Maureen "got" me, and helped me craft effective essays that weaved the same central themes of my story throughout each essay and each application. I only engaged her for two schools (Tuck and Darden). Maureen's response time was always within 24 hours, typically within just an hour or two. She also has phenomenal bed-side manner (the consultant's version) and helped manage my expectations throughout this process. At the end of the day, I was accepted everywhere I applied and was able to have my pick of my three favorite schools. I went into the process expecting to only get into one school and just go there - Maureen helped me TRULY put my best foot forward, and I am 100% convinced that I would not be in this absolutely amazing position that I never dreamed possible if it weren't for Maureen. Just a note: for anyone who thinks that "hiring a consultant" will make the application process easier, think again. I am confident that I worked significantly harder on my applications than I would have without a consultant. That said, you really get out what you put in. Maureen acted as my coach and adviser and really, really pushed me to put out an impeccable and thoughtful end-product. If you're serious about the application process, Maureen and SBC will help you get to where you want to be.
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