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ApplicantLab Admissions Consulting Reviews
    Number of reviews [32]
    Average Rating:       (5.0/5)
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ApplicantLab On-Demand Admissions Guidance Tool [32]
    
  Applicant Lab
Admissions is a tough game; we teach you how to win it. ApplicantLab is an on-demand series of interactive exercises that walk you through everything you need to craft a winning application. Created by an HBS grad with almost 15 years of experience, ApplicantLab takes admissions consultants’ tools and puts them in your hands. Learn more.

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7 out of 7 people found the following review helpful
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     By Rohit6 238 49

About me: I belong to an over-represented demography (Indian, male, engineer) hence I knew from day 1 that I'll need to work extra hard on my applications. I got my final GMAT early October hence I had just 8-10 weeks to submit 5-8 high quality applications for US schools in R2. I have previously worked with many top consultants, have talked to almost every major consulting firm and have wasted thousands of dollars, without any concrete result. I was impressed by Maria's expertise in the domain and decided to sign up with ApplicantLab. I'm glad I did.

About ApplicantLab: My first biggest challenge was school selection. I mailed Maria and she was kind enough to do a profile evaluation and recorded a video of her with her recommendations. I shortlisted 6-8 schools and started working tirelessly. ApplicantLab is an amazing tool for the self-starter types. Moreover, if you get stuck some where Maria is super helpful. She responded to all my queries and emails mostly within a day. Also, she has made the platform very engaging. You don't feel like reading a book, her advice examples are interesting, humorous and keeps you engaged. There are hours of videos that she has made and it's a treat to watch them. All videos are very professionally made, high quality and Maria is super intelligent and gives you a clear insight of what adcoms are looking for.

Content: The advice that Maria has put together on this platform is simply outstanding. It's a steal at the price at which it is offered. The platform can be customized and it provides advice based on your "unique" situation (such as low GMAT, over-represented group, low GPA etc.). Maria is a seasoned professional in this industry and her advice is bang-on. At times she would tell something about my profile and I would be like "why didn't it came to my mind earlier?".

When you start writing essays, she has done school by school research, essay by essay analysis for each and every school and have addressed "every" possible concern that an applicant might have. Her advice is step by step and this platform substantially cuts down your time to research on schools. I remember when I had to make a video essay for my MIT application, she had a full 1-2h tutorial on how to quickly make a video along with all useful links and tools. Superb.

Much of the content that she has put on the ApplicantLab came in handy for me during the interviews as well. She has comprehensively worked on every type of concern or question that adcom may have about your profile and how to tackle it. Another good part of ApplicantLab is that it doesn't charge you per school, as most consultants do. Applying to B-schools is a hectic process and many times you may end up applying to more/less schools than you initially planned. ApplicantLab doesn't penalize you for that.

It's a highly highly recommended product for anyone applying to business schools (or even thinking about it). If any of you want to understand more about ApplicantLab and how it helped me in my journey, feel free to PM me. btw, I'm matriculating at Kellogg :)

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Comments [2]
1 Commented by Thestral on August 07, 2017
Hi Rohit,

Congrats on making it to Kellogg!

I am beginning my applications for fall 2018 and looking at my options for consultants.

You said Applicant Lab does not charge you per school. But is there a limit on the number of schools you can apply to with Applicant Lab?

Hope to hear from you soon.

Have a great term!

Regards,
Madhuri
2 Commented by aznaggie on August 15, 2017
Hey Madhuri,

I'm another ApplicantLab user that has successfully gotten into the school I wanted and it's an awesome product! After you sign up, you can use it for unlimited number of schools (as long as it's offered on there) and there's school-specific essay and other advice so definitely a great bang for your buck!
6 out of 6 people found the following review helpful
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     By mbastudenttx87 10 5

So I'll preface this review by saying that what ApplicantLab has created is really an incredible, easy to use tool, at a fraction of the cost of other Admissions Consultants.

i was starting to look at Business School applications and I knew that the prestigious Consortium Fellowship would be my only chance to pay for a good business school. I went on a message board, posted my "stats", and asked others my chances at winning the Fellowship, and was flat-out told by "experts" on the thread that not only would I never get the Fellowship, but that I probably would not even get accepted to these programs. Here are two of the comments I received.

"If you applied to all of the listed schools, I imagine you'd get into one or two. "

"Consulting firms probably won't interview you....As far as scholarships, normally I'd say no shot...and I don't know much about the consortium."

I was really disappointed after submitting my post. Getting an MBA was a lifelong dream and I knew I needed help but I couldn't afford an admissions consultant -- they charge so much! Thankfully, I found ApplicantLab. I applied to 7 full-time programs and was accepted to all of them; including two full-tuition scholarships and the prestigious Consortium Fellowship! I really owe it all to the easy to use and very reasonably priced ApplicantLab, especially considering the huge ROI I received! ($300 Investment ; $100,000+ return)

The Lab's amazing interactive platform took me from feeling hopeless to feeling empowered. I felt like every step of the way, I knew exactly what to do. There were videos and useful interactive exercises for every question I had along the way! I most thoroughly enjoyed the Strategy and Preparation, Essay Writing and Interview Prep!

ApplicantLab had instructions on how to approach each essay question, which stories to focus on, and even detailed preparation materials for the interview. I am 5 and a half years removed from my Undergrad, so needless to say it had been a long while since I had written any sort of essay. ApplicantLab was absolute God-send! The strategy and planning sections helped me organize my thoughts and made me think about my career and how I could show AdComs just how much value I could add to an MBA program. It looks like it worked! The interview prep was also very helpful; ApplicantLab has various questions that lets you know what to expect from your interview. Without this section, I know I would not have gotten into all of the schools I applied.

I highly recommend using ApplicantLab! The tool is truly a great value for anybody who wants to get into a top MBA program!

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     By alh13 0 0

I was rushing to submit my applications for R1 and I only had 4 weeks to draft several compelling essays! My GMAT was a median score, so I was quite stressed and frankly overwhelmed with the amount of work to be done.. it was a slow start.

I stumbled upon Applicant Lab on the GMAT club and read good reviews. I thought I would give it a try since at this point, I had to use my time very efficiently.

Applicant Lab was very helpful in directing my energies towards productive brainstorming, drafting and final editing. There was also a diagnostic section in the beginning that assessed my profile and gave specific instructions how I can strengthen my application i.e. given a median GMAT vs. really smart people all around the world. This encouraged me and helped me craft a compelling and targeted story.

Maria is very hands-on and helpful. I loved the videos as it makes her come to life, like the 'MBA Alumni Friend' you could bother! Of course I reached our to other MBA alumni for advice on my applications, but they are obviously very busy people and I couldn't bother them on the details. Maria (through applicant lab) gave me the nitty gritty for each essay/ recommendation question on my application and wow- this was mighty helpful!

Fast forward several weeks after, I got into my top choice school - INSEAD with a FULL scholarship!! Using the applicant lab 'frameworks' and Maria's advice on my scholarship essays were a big help. I couldn't be happier and I would definitely recommend Applicant Lab in a blink of an eye. :)

Thank you Maria! You are doing amazing things.

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     By rockyrio 0 0

I want to say that what Maria is doing with ApplicantLab is really great as it provides excellent, easy-to-use service at an extremely affordable price. I used the standard tool service for preparation of the pack of documents to Columbia, Chicago Booth and Wharton as well as editing services for all essays to Columbia and Columbia interview preparation with Maria. I need to add that I was invited to all of the schools I applied. In my opinion, expensive consulting services do not work better than what Maria proposes, I can compare it as I tried initially one of the respectable and expensive consulting providers for Wharton, but I got a feeling that they proposed corrections to make your consulting as long as possible and to make you pay more for more hours, that's just what I had + I was really demotivated as my previous consultant was finding faults even when I did not see any. Finally, I submitted a version which contained a ton of comments from the consultant and I still got invited for an interview. Review of the essays and preparation to Columbia with Maria was a completely different experience. She was so helpful, friendly and supportive, responding to my emails really quickly. After the mock interview you will have it recorded version which is invaluable as you can listen to Maria's comments when it is convenient for you. Essay editors comments were reasonable, without this typical "I don't understand what you are talking about here..." what I had previously. I believe that there is a lot of value in using ApplicantLab and advise it to all. Finally, I was admitted to Columbia with 50k fellowship. Thank you Maria for your help!

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     By Chanishere 28 3

ApplicantLab is an amazing, super easy to use, highly customizable tool at a fraction of the cost of what other admissions consultant services charge.

About me - I come from one of the most over represented demographics – IME (Indian Male Engineer). Those of you who are aware of how college admissions play out would know, being part of an over represented group makes the already tough process, tougher. Unfortunately I had to learn this the hard way. After unsuccessfully applying to several schools in my first year, not to mention the hours and money down the drain, I was desperately looking to identify drawbacks and improve my profile. As a re-applicant, I also had the added onus on me to show how I have improved since last time.

Enter ApplicantLab, at this juncture!

One demo session with ApplicantLab, I found exactly what I was looking for. ApplicantLab handholds you through the entire application process by presenting a highly customizable path where you can choose amongst the numerous combinations to tailor the advice to exactly any background, any career vision and any target school. Are you a candidate from an over represented pool targeting a common post MBA career choice at an M7 school, Applicantlab’s got your back! Poor acads with limited ECs aiming to change career, Lab’s got you covered! You can think of any possible scenario and Maria has useful advice for each and every one of those.

But this is just the beginning. ApplicantLab ties your best stories with traits that schools are looking for and helps align stories with specific schools, depending upon what each school is looking for in their candidate. For example, it may seem, most schools are just asking different variations of the same questions and there is a strong urge, given the paucity of time, to rehash the same essay. And that, my friends, would be a massive mistake. Maria’s excellent guidance on bringing out the qualities that make you a good ‘fit’ with the school would often be the deciding factor on getting and interview call or being waitlisted/denied.

Now you may ask, but what about the essays? How do I know that I have written the perfect essay that would make the admission committee sit up and take notice? Believe me, after going through the ‘branding’, ‘mapping’ and ‘pre-writing’ sections, writing the first draft would be a breeze. You can definitely take help of your friends to edit the essays and use the numerous guidance videos in ApplicantLab to refine them further. And if you are still not satisfied, and want a final touch, Maria offers an essay editing service as well.

Additionally, once you do get the interview call, ApplicantLab offers guidance on interview prep, selecting recommenders and a host of other related stuff. It basically covers end to end of the MBA application process. Some of the advice would remain extremely helpful (especially those on networking) even after your MBA app is complete.

Thus, if you want to get the best help for your application at an extremely low price, with the option of starting with the basic package and getting add-on services only in case you need it, ApplicantLab is a no-brainer. I highly recommend it and I promise that you won’t regret your choice. You can sign up for a free 15 day trial and check for yourself.

As for me, my story has a happy ending. I got admitted Duke Fuqua and with that my MBA application journey came to an end. Best of luck to you all who are thinking of starting your MBA application journey. If you have any questions about ApplicationLab, feel free to pm me.

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     By Gcakil 1 0

Compared to private admissions consultant, my expectations were low for applicant lab at first. But the tool and Maria proved me wrong very soon. The process to develop the essays completely works (i got interviews to HBS and Columbia with the stories I had built using Applicant Lab). Whether you are starting from scratch or have a story on mind, I believe Applicant Lab will be extremely helpful in crafting the essays. It is like having a framework that keeps you on track while clarifying and calibrating your fuzzy thoughts and emotions.

In addition, Maria is a very impressive person. I found her videos (both for essays and interviews) to be extremely extremely helpful. She is also super responsive to emails and quick questions. I have also did a mock interview with her which was right on spot. She got many questions right for HBS!

Now looking back, I would have purchased Applicant Lab again and again for sure. If you are having second thoughts (which I had), please please remember that you end up spending so much money to random things during the application process and Applicant Lab will be one of your wisest purchases.

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     By Prasenjit84 0 0

Applicant Lab is a great resource for Structuring the application process after you are done with your GMAT ( or you can also start early).So it is more like a automated tool that helps you groom yourself , in a self-paced model. It sets the context by helping you to identify your short and long term goals and thereby a story that then goes through a series of refinement until it reflects in your Essays in the most effective manner.
It is more like a structured guidance tool like Turbo Tax that helps you file your Tax return at the end of the year.
There are custom tailored videos for each application Essays for most of the IVY schools and loads of videos for the interview preparation that holistically covers most of the behavioral interviews and all of this comes at such a reasonable price that is currently unmatched in the Application counselling segment. It helped me crack Booth Evening and Kellogg Evening (the only 2 schools that I applied) with a below Average GMAT score of 660 and I think it was because of my overall grooming with the tool.
All the best!

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IE accepted
November 08 | 2017
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     By ryomerz 0 0

I just started my MBA program at IE, and I want to share how good the service Maria provides before my super busy weeks start. Before I purchased her service, I actually researched a lot. I saw so many reviews but the only concern that I had was "IE". As you may know, IE's admission process is kind of strange. You have to create a video and a slide and an essay answering the questions provided by IE. But eventually the reasonable price made me purchase her service, and it turned out to be the best thing I've ever bought.

The well automated algorithm she created is indeed perfect(I told my company's HR to mimic her brainstorming algorithm to improve employees' proficiency). I was skeptical about how it works before I started using her service, but she embedded her own video explaining everything in every section so that I didn't have any questions in each sections. What amazed me the most was she also put her video specifically for IE. There were more than 10 questions that IE asks you to write about(you need to choose 3 of them) and she covered everything in the video. She waled me through which question I should answer and shouldn't and why. In addition to that she wrote how to make slides(websites and tools) and how to make videos by quoting her own experience. I actually only applied for IE so I don't know if there is any other specific advice for other schools but probably she has videos on the website. Prior to using her service, I created some videos but I recreated all of them to follow her advice.

She also posts so many videos about how to prepare for an interview and I prepared everything according to her advice. Surprisingly an interviewer asked me 80-90% from the questions that she made me prepare.

Also my interviewer told me that all of people in the admission office gathered at one place to watch my video because it was really good! Furthermore I got scholarship that can easily cover the cost that I paid for her service.

I read this kind of post before I purchase the consulting service but I thought her friends wrote all of them and that made me doubt the quality of her service. If there is somebody like me, I can assure that she will make you get in any school that you want to get in.

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Silver Bullet for Admissions
September 20 | 2017
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     By GrantMeAdmission 311 192

I'm a workoholic.

Working 60+ hour weeks, two non-profits, and a side business, I needed admissions help that could operate with my schedule but still quench my thirst for details and specifics.

ApplicantLab was the perfect solution for me.

It contains amazingly detailed videos of not only what to do, but why you do it, which is really the secret sauce of admissions! The online tool walked me through the entire process of building up my MBA profile, and made sure that I thought through all of the important introspective questions that are necessary at putting together solid essays.

After building up my profile strategy, it helped me brainstorm essay topics and ultimately helped me create outlines, drafts and final versions of my essays. Finally, working with Maria via her videos on the essays were amazing. Her professionalism and upbeat attitude helped get me through a tough application schedule.

Ultimately, I got into my top choice!

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Full-ride at Columbia!!!
August 23 | 2017
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     By aznaggie 7 7

I used ApplicantLab's platform for my application to Columbia's August-entry MBA program and received a full merit fellowship for both years and I couldn't be happier!! Prior to using ApplicantLab, I had a couple of calls with traditional admissions consulting firms who told me my chances at a T10 program was slim to nil, that I should aim for T15-20 programs, and that they are reluctant to help me target a T10 school. Needless to say, the dispensed advice was off-the-mark and I decided to use ApplicantLab to take a stab at the admissions process myself.

My biggest takeaway from ApplicantLab is how intuitive it is to use to flesh out your unique story - this was my first time applying to an MBA program but the platform gave me step-by-step guidance on understanding my strengths/weaknesses, school-specific advice that is peppered with funny anecdotes and useful videos created by Maria, and awesome brainstorming tools for essays. The platform also gave me the flexibility to work on the application at my own pace (sometimes I have a stretch of several hours to work on it while other times it may just be 15-20 minutes during a lunch break - regardless, the platform provided the right probing questions and advice to get my ideas flowing!).

Two oft-overlooked sections that I think really gave me the edge: the resume writing and interview prep sections. In the resume section, Maria really outlines the importance of the resume despite the short time an Adcom might spend glancing at it. She also provided an easy-to-use and adaptable template that helps frame how I wanted to tell my story in the context of the overall application. In the interview prep section, there was useful but candid advice on how to approach the common questions (why MBA, why now, why this school, etc) as well as some unique questions through written and video advice. She also has several videos explaining how to really excel in Skype interviews as well as "record yourself" interviews used in the application process by Yale SOM and others. Overall, super thorough and relevant for pretty much any school you may be looking at.

Finally, Maria responds to questions through email which was an added bonus. She is experienced and provides practical and actionable advice to really move you ahead of the applicant pool and is a super approachable and professional individual. I highly recommend ApplicantLab for anyone interested in attending the MBA program of your dreams!!

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