Stratus Prep Admissions Consulting Reviews
    Number of reviews [53]      Average Rating:       (4.6/5)
Packages
    
    
Headquartered in New York City, Stratus Prep has served clients from across the country and around the globe. Stratus Prep was founded in 2006 by Shawn O’Connor, an honors graduate of Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School who has worked at McKinsey & Company, Lehman Brothers, and Mercer Management Consulting. Stratus Prep’s team of experts has served thousands of clients and has had numerous applicants admitted to numerous top-rated B-Schools
  Reviews
Sort by:   date of publication  most helpful
Great choice!
August 14 | 2015

reviewer identity verified by school email address
       By Anonymous joined: August 14, 2015 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  MBA Admissions Counseling Packages   Consultant:  Shaifali Aggarwal
I did my research before signing up with Stratus and what really differentiates this company is the team support that I received. I worked one-on-one with Shaifali and also had the support of a school-specific reader, the company's CEO, Shawn, a proof reader, among others. Their approach was strategic, holistic and helped me put my best self forward for my application. A lot of time was spent on introspection, understanding my goals and what stories I could use to support my application. I couldn't have made it to a top school without them. The service met my expectations and I highly recommend them to any one considering hiring an admissions consultant.
Was this review helpful to you?
   

Be the first person to comment
on this review.
Stratus Prep
August 08 | 2015

       By ASmith joined: August 8, 2015 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  MBA Admissions Counseling Packages   Consultant:  Samantha Merton
I used Stratus to help with my b-school applications and I found their services to be absolutely fantastic. For a bit of background, I am white male who worked in finance but the one differentiator (for the worse) was a sub 700 GMAT.

I found that beginning and figuring out "your story" was one of the hardest parts of the application process. Stratus ensures that a lot of "pre-work" (outlines, self-discovery exercises, etc.) is done before writing essays so when I sat down to start my essays, I knew exactly what I was trying to convey to the adcoms. I did multiple rounds of iterations of my outlines with my consultant, and she did an excellent job guiding me and asking the right questions so I could figure out exactly what was most important to me to convey. While writing my essays, the consistent feedback from my consultant helped me write, in my opinion, the best possible essays I would be able to write. Lastly, this is a real stressful process and having the calming influence of someone who was an expert in the school I was applying gave me confidence I would not have otherwise had.

In the end, I was admitted to The Wharton School and I am 100% confident that I would not have gotten in had I not worked with Stratus. I highly recommend them!
Was this review helpful to you?
   

Be the first person to comment
on this review.
Get a Special Discount on Stratus Prep
Learn more
Exclusively provided for the GMAT Club Community
GMAT Prep with Sara
July 31 | 2015

       By katievila joined: July 31, 2015 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  MBA Admissions Counseling Packages  
As a full time professional with a very busy schedule, the help that I received from Sara and Shawn at Stratus Prep was invaluable. Sara not only did an amazing job helping me craft and perfect my story, she helped me stay on top of the applications by setting deadlines for when we would talk and when I would be expected to have something to her. I applied to 5 top b-schools and was accepted to 3 of the 5.

Stratus only helped me with 3 of the 5 applications, and they were very upfront from a price perspective and let me know that they thought doing all 5 would not be worth it as you can mend essays to conform to the other schools fairly easily. I really appreciated their candor from the get-go.

While I consider myself a strong writer, I still felt it was very important to hire a consultant to be as competitive as possible. Going through the application process twice was not an option for me. Many people hire consultants and I feel having experts who know the industry allows you the best chance at getting accepted into the school of your choice.
Was this review helpful to you?
   

Be the first person to comment
on this review.
Stratus Prep Review
July 24 | 2015

reviewer identity verified by school email address
       By chocks5 joined: January 4, 2015 | 3 | 6 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  MBA Admissions Counseling Packages   Consultant:  Asha Banker
As a JD/MBA candidate, I worked with Stratus for both law and business school admissions. On the business side, I applied to six schools in R1 and enlisted Stratus' services for help with three of them (H/S/W); law prep is a flat fee for any number of law schools. While I got dinged (without interview) from H/S/W, I attribute that to the inherent difficulties of getting into these top schools. I applied what I learned from this process to my remaining applications (Kellogg, Fuqua, and UT McCombs) and was accepted to all three, with scholarship offers from Kellogg (matriculating) and McCombs. I worked with Asha for MBA prep and Michelle for law prep and--while I wasn't admitted to any of the b-schools for which Stratus helped me prepare applications--I attribute my admissions successes to my interactions with with Asha and Michelle. Both were professional, responded to my emails in a timely manner, and strictly adhered to timelines during the essay drafting process. I found working with both Asha and Michelle on the introspection exercises and essay drafting to be extremely helpful.

In addition to the admissions package, I did a couple hours of 1-on-1 LSAT tutoring. If you are self-motivated and can learn from reading a book, then there's nothing earth-shattering about this (or any) LSAT prep experience. I would recommend the PowerScore LSAT Bible series, which I found to be incredibly useful and much better than Kaplan.

For what it's worth, no matter who you work with--Stratus or otherwise--don't be surprised if you get a ding from the top schools. Stratus will, however, put you in as good a position as any to put your best foot forward and make you a competitive candidate.
Was this review helpful to you?
   

Be the first person to comment
on this review.
Get a Special Discount on Stratus Prep
Learn more
Exclusively provided for the GMAT Club Community
Great investment!
July 17 | 2015

       By ESQ1978 joined: April 23, 2015 | 5 | 1 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  Hourly Services   Consultant:  Shawn OConnor
I met Shawn O'Connor at an MBA seminar in FEBRUARY of this year. I was going to be applying for Round 3 to several schools and when he mentioned the Stratus Prep/GMAT tutoring service I decided to take the plunge when he said they get results. After initially having some issues accessing the website over a stormy weekend I was able to get going and got assigned a tutor. I was pressed for time obviously but Nadim (my tutor) was extremely accommodating and helped me navigate through some questions that I seemed to be stumbling over. Because of the initial log-in issues I was given 5 Free hours of tutoring and I thought that was a great example of customer service. I went in and improved my GMAT score by 70 points and was accepted into my #1 choice with fellowship money! In round 3! I highly recommend that if you want a score that's going to make these admissions teams take notice that you sign up for Stratus Prep!
Was this review helpful to you?
   

Be the first person to comment
on this review.
MBA Admissions
July 16 | 2015

       By Anonymous joined: July 16, 2015 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  MBA Admissions Counseling Packages   Consultant:  Jeff Mroz
It was a pleasure of working with Shawn O'Connor and Jeff Mroz. From start to finish both Shawn and Jeff provided me with both support and advice. Although their process is rigorous, at the end if you want to get into a good business school it is definitely worth it. Through multiple iterations my initial drafts were changed considerably in order to put together the best application possible. Jeff was also very helpful with the interview process, as well as making a final decision on what school to go. I would highly recommend Stratus Prep to anyone who wants to get into a great school.
Was this review helpful to you?
   

Be the first person to comment
on this review.
Get a Special Discount on Stratus Prep
Learn more
Exclusively provided for the GMAT Club Community
Admitted to dream school with Stratus
July 14 | 2015

reviewer identity verified by score report
       By kaoruchan20 joined: April 5, 2013 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  MBA Admissions Counseling Packages   Consultant:  Shawn OConnor
Working with Stratus Prep was the best decision that I made. I'm really pleased with the results and ecstatic to be attending my dream school.

To give a sense of my background, I worked for 5 years in tech/consulting, 720 GMAT, and 3.85 GPA from a well-ranked public university. I worked for good but not elite firms, so I decided to hire an admissions consultant to give me my best chance at getting into a top school. I chose Stratus, because I liked that they're not a huge operation (where you may not get as much individual attention and there are more hourly consultants), and I liked Stratus' approach in getting both your consultant's and Shawn's feedback.

I was first assigned to Vanessa Gil, and she helped me through the initial introspection exercises and the first draft of my essays. She gave me advice to not rush and apply for R1 and that allowed me to prepare much stronger applications for R2. At some point, she stopped communicating, and I was not surprised to find out that she had resigned.

The weeks after Vanessa's resignation were extremely stressful, because it took time to get assigned to my new consultant, Sara, and I had to wait 2 weeks to hear feedback from Shawn. I'm not sure why, but it was not Sara who picked up where Vanessa left off in reviewing my essays but Shawn with Sara mostly answering some of my questions along the way. Once I received feedback from Shawn, I had to move really quickly to get my essays in decent shape and worked nonstop throughout the holiday season.

The feedback that I did receive was what made all the difference in my essays. I felt okay about a few but one or two were pretty mediocre. Shawn's feedback helped me to really turn my essays around. And I like that he will continue to give you feedback until you are completely comfortable with the essays that you wrote. When I finally submitted my applications, I was confident that I had the very best essays that I could have possible written, and I owe it to Stratus who helped me to get there.

I ended up interviewing with Kellogg, Booth, Columbia, and Wharton with acceptances at Kellogg, Booth, and Columbia. I truly believe that I wouldn't have had as much success if I hadn't worked with Stratus. It's still a ton of work and you have to be disciplined in following the process and giving it your absolute best, but I'm glad that I chose to partner with Stratus.
Was this review helpful to you?
   

Be the first person to comment
on this review.
Consultants aren’t just for getting into your dream school
July 13 | 2015

       By chrisrichling joined: July 13, 2015 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  MBA Admissions Counseling Packages   Consultant:  Vanessa Gil
A good consultant isn’t even going to come close to writing anything for you. A good consultant is going to force you to take the time and put in the effort to generate meaningful responses to every facet of presenting yourself to Business School.

Vanessa and Shawn worked tirelessly to ensure I was putting my best foot forward. For me this process started 8 months before the first application was even due. We worked each week on brainstorming and refining my story: looking at each individual application holistically.

For those who believe they should have no problem getting into their target school and thus assume a consultant would be of no value, they should consider that some scholarships are awarded based on application strength. I personally believe that Stratus Prep helped the application board see my value as a future alumni, which in turn helped in their award determination.
Was this review helpful to you?
   

Be the first person to comment
on this review.
Get a Special Discount on Stratus Prep
Learn more
Exclusively provided for the GMAT Club Community
Stratus could be the difference between “Accepted” and “Waitlisted”
July 09 | 2015

       By Anonymous joined: October 26, 2014 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  MBA Admissions Counseling Packages   Consultant:  Salma Qarnain
If you are serious about getting accepted into a top tier MBA program, than Stratus Prep is a smart investment for your future. I decided to apply to only 3 of the best MBA programs in the country (HBS, Wharton, and Kellogg), so I wanted to make sure that I got in.

My experience working with Stratus Prep was quite good, and the results speak for themselves. I was accepted into HBS and Wharton even though I had major gaps in my application (i.e. a 3.0 undergrad GPA). Stratus (and my consultant, Salma) helped me craft my unique story to highlight my strengths and enhance the strongest parts of my application.

Salma was very responsive throughout the entire process, and continuously pushed me to “dig deeper” into my personal values and motivations.

For me, the most valuable aspect of the Stratus Prep package was the guidance on the application essay. Since I did the 1 school package, I only had Salma’s guidance on my HBS essay, but I used a very similar version for Wharton (to which I was also accepted). For my Kellogg application, I had no help on the essays, and I was waitlisted.

I am very excited to be heading to HBS soon to start this new chapter of my life!
Was this review helpful to you?
   

Be the first person to comment
on this review.
Highly Recommend for Wharton Admission
July 06 | 2015

reviewer identity verified by school email address
       By mich1216 joined: July 6, 2015 | 0 | 0 |
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:  
This review is for:  MBA Admissions Counseling Packages   Consultant:  Jeff Mroz
My profile is Asian American, Female, Consulting, top 20 US undergrad with ok GPA, and 740 GMAT. I knew I needed to differentiate myself for admissions purposes and I wanted to hear it from the professionals who won't sugarcoat it for me. I worked with Jeff who is a Wharton alum and Shawn who is a HBS alum for my 2 applications. I was admitted to Wharton and will be attending in the fall.

I got the service also because I had some extenuating circumstances that I wanted to explain from my transcript and I wanted someone who can guide me through it. Overall, highly recommend getting this service if you're coming from a background where there aren't a lot of people in your network who have gone to these schools. I think if you know enough alums, having them read your essays and bounce ideas off of them will suffice but not everyone has that kind of resources at their disposal at that specific time of year. If you're aiming for a top 3 school, better safe than sorry!
Was this review helpful to you?
   

Be the first person to comment
on this review.
Get a Special Discount on Stratus Prep
Learn more
Exclusively provided for the GMAT Club Community


Get a Special Discount on Stratus Prep
Exclusively provided for the GMAT Club Community
Learn more