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Stacy Blackman

SBC has a unique and systematic process that provides clients with several layers of support, draws on extensive resources and ultimately, leaves no stone unturned in helping to craft winning application packages.

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     By Anonymous 0 0

I worked with Hannah and the SBC team this past fall and the experience couldn’t have gone better. I signed on for the comprehensive 2-school package and ended up getting admitted to both schools!

Although I had a competitive GMAT score, I was concerned with how I’d stack up against candidates from a more traditional background, as I was coming from a non-financial background with limited quantitative experience. Beginning with our very first conversation, Hannah worked diligently with me throughout the entire process to help turn my perceived “weakness” into a strength. With Hannah’s help and insight, I was able hone my story and leverage it across all application assets (resume, essays, interview, etc) to truly differentiate myself from other applicants.

It can be difficult to discuss your own experiences and skills in your application – some things you may think aren’t important/impressive and may want to leave those out, and vice versa – but Hannah made sure I was hitting on ALL the right points. It was clear that Hannah and the SBC team knew exactly how admissions teams think and what they are looking for, and I was so happy to have them guiding me throughout the process.

Overall, I felt I was extremely prepared every step of the way and I can’t thank SBC enough. Hannah, in particular, was super accommodating/flexible with various deadlines, constantly provided constructive feedback and advice, and was very personable and easy to talk to. I would definitely recommend SBC to future applicants looking to get into a top business school!

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     By Anonymous 0 0

One thing about SBC that I liked was their straightforward and honest approach. I was initially looking for a full-time program, and during a free consultation, Esther Magna, the Principal with SBC told me up-front that I was too old for a full-time program. It was a shock to me but I realized that she didn't have to be honest with me as she could very well have sugar coated her response and taken my money to 'help' me with the essays without any guarantees of an admission, but she didn't. I was sold on that honesty.

Then I had the pleasure of working with Bill Chionis at Stacy Blackman for my EMBA application to 2 top ranked schools. He is a thorough professional and a master of his craft. He was extremely helpful from start to finish. He was very patient with me and spent the time to understand my background, objectives and, strengths and weaknesses. He quickly assessed the key strengths in my profile that I could use, and also discussed how I should address the weaknesses. He even helped me identify the aspects of my profile that made me stand out from a crowded field of male engineer applicants.

He was great at compressing and streamlining my thoughts in the essays and was patient during the numerous edits I made to them. His promptness was excellent; he answered all my emails within a day. He even helped me when I completely changed the main essay for one of my schools just one day before the deadline. His second biggest help was with interview preparation. He was brutal but effective as he knew what I could do and pushed me hard on my responses. With his help, I was fully prepared for any question during the interview.

I owe him a great deal. It's because of him that I've been accepted to both the schools.

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My experience with SBC February 03 | 2016
1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful
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     By tonyko 18 16
This review is for: Stacy Blackman Consulting Comprehensive Service | Consultant: Margaret

I'm writing to tell you guys about how SBC helped me out - I m a successful reapplicant and will be starting my MBA at CBS in August.

Profile: male, 28, finance (m&a, pe, public equities buy-side), international, very few extracurricular activities ("MBAable type", the ones that can be easily transformed in a story)
Post-MBA goals: investment management (focus on value)
Applications prior to SBC engagement: 2nd round to CBS, Booth, Wharton
Results: 0 interview invites

I applied hastily in early January with a GMAT score of 720 (47/41) (and without a recommendation from my current employer). No one wanted to talk to me.

I realized that I needed help, and started looking for consultants. After a few test intervies, I chose SBC, 4 school pack (CBS, Wharton, Booth, MIT).

We almost immediately started working with Margaret on the basics. I retook GMAT and got 730 (49/41). And this time I asked my employer for a recommendation.

This time I was ready: I applied in the 1st round to CBS (ED, had to think hard between CBS and Booth for my top choice), Booth, Wharton, and MIT. I received 3 invites out of 4 (Wharton dinged me again), did 2 interviews (Booth and CBS), was admitted to CBS, and withdrew other apps.

I'm pretty sure the results I got were possible thanks to direct contribution of Margaret, and I'm super grateful for that! Enjoyed the process a lot! I encourage you to ask your consultant lots of questions - especially if you are not sure you are going the right way with your story - this will only benefit you as an applicant!

Hope this helps you choose your consultant wisely!

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Great Experience February 03 | 2016
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     By Anonymous 0 0
This review is for: Stacy Blackman Consulting Comprehensive Service | Consultant: Margaret

I worked with Margaret on my top choice (Columbia) and, not only did I get in, I couldn't be happier with her service! I had one issue which I considered to be a major weakness of my application. Margaret immediately focused in on how we could address that weakness, while leaving the actual path up to me which ensured authenticity. She was also effective in keeping me engaged in the application process long before the apps were due which resulted in a more well-rounded resume, valuable school visits, and deeper essays. Finally, she reassured me of my initial school choices based on my personal criteria as I started to become indecisive closer to the decision.

In summary, if you think you can identify and turn any weaknesses into strengths, stay laser focused on all aspects of the application for the better part of a year, and remain unfailingly confident then don't use a business school consultant. Otherwise, use Margaret.

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     By Anonymous 0 0

I purchased SBC's comprehensive service with Bill Chionis. Even though I have good stats and work experience, I was concerned about how my candidacy would come across to adcoms because my background is in a non-traditional industry in a developing country.

Bill helped me to decide on my application strategy and how to better present my background and post-MBA goals (and decide which of the potential paths was more appropiate application-wise). Bill is very knowledgeable about MBA programs, what each program offers, what adcoms seek in an applicant, and how the adcom will most likely interpret your profile. To me, that service alone was worth the whole investment, but that is not all that the package includes.

Bill, with his super-friendly and professional style, also helped me with:

_Brainstorming, editing, and improving the essays (with the specific structure each school prefers and why they prefer it)
_Editing textbox responses in the online application forms.
_Preparing for the interview: what questions to expect, what an appropiate response looks like, and how to behave. Bill also conducted a mock interview and gave me constructive feedback.
_SBC also provided a "Flight Test" in which another consultant looks at your application cold, as a real adcom would, and then gives you a very detailed report on what areas to improve, if any, and how they think your candidacy will be perceived.

In the end, my process with Bill was very enjoyable, he was super-responsive and helpful, he listened to my needs, and responded with insightful advice. Also, I never felt anxious or alone. I think MBA applications, like many other important moments in life, should be done with someone you can fall back-on for advice and support (remember when you bought your first home or car?).

I was admitted to Chicago Booth (and will attend) while edging on the younger side of the applicant pool. Such a result more than meets my expectations. If I were to do it all over again, I would hire Bill Chionis from Stacy Blackman Consulting and not look anywhere else.

Note: I tried services from another firm before and was not impressed. Also, I am a very demanding client, specially for the amount of $ invested in these services. I can tell you that Stacy Blackman Consulting is worth your investment.

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Invaluable! February 02 | 2016
     By Anonymous 0 0
This review is for: Stacy Blackman Consulting Comprehensive Service | Consultant: Margaret

As a R1 applicant gunning for some of the top schools, Margaret + the Stacy Blackman team were absolutely crucial throughout my entire application process.

Margaret helped me prioritize early on in the spring, so that I could knock out things like short-answer/fill-in-the-blank questions and polish up my resume before schools officially released their essay questions. When it came to essay writing, Margaret helped me bring out the best in my essay without ever losing my distinct voice. I was amazed when I compared my first drafts with my final versions - she truly has a sharp eye for how to polish any essay and bring out your unique voice on paper. Margaret was also super responsive throughout the entire process, responding at all hours of the day on weekdays and weekends.

After I received an interview with HBS, Margaret set me up with Paul (another Stacy Blackman consultant whom I would highly recommend) - I truly believe he made the difference in my interview with HBS. He provided invaluable advice on how to differentiate myself and effectively convey what I could offer to the school during my interview. For those skeptical, he has decades of interview experience for top schools like Stanford GSB.

I ended up getting into HBS and Wharton (with scholarship), and would highly recommend SBC!

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     By Anonymous 0 0

I thoroughly researched MBA Consulting Services for weeks before deciding to seek the support of Stacy Blackman Consulting. After just an initial consultation with the Stacy Blackman team I felt confident their partnership would ensure my application was competitive and the best representation of who I was as a business professional including what differentiated me as an MBA applicant. I was partnered with Carol Grayson whose many years of MBA admissions experience were heavily apparent in her incredibly beneficial feedback, advice and recommendations. Carol was always tremendously responsive and very attentive. I benefited from an incredibly personal support system. Carol answered every question or concern I had with clear thought and care and always pushed me in my writing in a way that ensured the final result communicated my ideas in a concise, clear manner. I am thrilled to say that with Stacy Blackman Consulting and Carol Grayson's support, I was extended admission to my top program, INSEAD! I would HIGHLY recommend Stacy Blackman Consulting - if you are on the fence, trust that you will not be disappointed. Carol was an unwavering support system in all my moments of doubt, uncertainty or unease. SBC's services provide you with an unmatched confidence when navigating the rough waters of MBA applications. I HIGHLY recommend SBC and send a BIG thank you to Carol Grayson!

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     By Anonymous 0 0

Stacy Blackman Consulting exceeded my expectations and more than lived up to its excellent reputation. I worked with Maureen, who guided me through the entire application process, from crafting my story, to writing essays, and finally conducting mock interviews with me.

I was focused on a very small group of schools, all in the M7. Maureen helped me to tailor my story and application for each school, showing me how to emphasize specific aspects about myself that made me a fit for each program, allowing me to differentiate my candidacy. Maureen was extremely organized, laying out an aggressive but achievable schedule for submitting all of my applications before the Round 1 deadline. She was also incredibly responsive, typically turning around drafts of my essays within a day, and responding to all of my emailed questions within a few hours. I was accepted to both Columbia and to Kellogg with a large scholarship. I feel very strongly that without Maureen's guidance I would not have been admitted to any of the schools I applied to.

In addition to Maureen's exceptional guidance, Stacy Blackman Consulting has an outstanding set of resources that helped me throughout the process. The application flight test helped me to identify and fix weak spots in my application, and the wealth of information available on the Stacy Blackman Wiki was invaluable to me as I wrote my essays.

The MBA application process is far more competitive than I first realized, and I learned that a strong GMAT, GPA, and career path is not enough. Candidates must find ways to differentiate themselves, and Maureen and the team at Stacy Blackman Consulting showed me how to do so. If you are serious about pursuing an MBA at a top program, then I highly recommend that you consider working with Stacy Blackman Consulting.

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     By mdelaney17 0 0

This Fall, I worked with Lindsay Sage from Stacy Blackman Consulting on applications for business school. It was a great experience, and I certainly would recommend taking this route to others applying to business school.

Ultimately, the most valuable thing I got from the process was a clear, organized roadmap of everything that needed to be done. Without having done the process before, I was often unaware of all the items that I needed to keep track of, from the proper etiquette for optional essays to the need for unofficial vs official transcripts.

The essay reviews were helpful - especially when it came to helping me pick out what topics make the best business school essays. Lindsay was very responsive when it came to essay edits, and was usually able to get back edits in a couple of days, even when I sent in essays for 5 schools at a time.

SBC also has a variety of additional tools - I took advantage of their practice group interview (my group interview at Wharton was the first time I had every done one), their web-video portal to practice for Kellogg's video essays (again, I'm not exactly a video blogger - helpful to get the practice), and the "test flight" to get another set of eyes on my application.

Ultimately, my application process was very successful - out of the five schools I applied to, I got in to four - Wharton, Kellogg, Tuck, and Fuqua (Once I heard back from these, I had cancelled the fifth school, Columbia, before I heard back since).

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     By Anonymous 0 0

I'm off to HBS because of Paul.

I wasn't the easiest client, I admit, but at every stage wherever I was nervous/stressed, Paul was a beacon of calmness and confidence and, in fact, used this to direct my essays and ideas.

SBC is great in that it allows you to pick the person who works with you. For me, it was no contest: Paul is a Harvard grad and Stanford GSB grad with relevant work experience and gets countless in to the top schools every year.

Our initial conversation looked at aspects of my personality, helping me to think about myself and how this could drive what I wrote and my application strategy.

From then, Paul was always available - for a chat to discuss ideas and always ready to respond to an email at double speed, no matter what time or what day of the week I sent it.

I particularly liked the fact that Paul's strategy was more hands off, concentrating less on correcting my grammar and English, and focusing more on the content and how we could target each school. A number of times he reiterated that changes might not be 'authentically' me. As a result what I handed in was a snapshot of the real (and polished) me.

He was also happy to look through each of my applications innumerable times.

I still can't express fuly how thankful I am.

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