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ApplicantLab On-Demand Admissions Guidance Tool Reviews
    Number of reviews [36]
    Average Rating:       (5.0/5)
  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.

7 out of 7 people found the following review helpful
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     By Rohit6 239 50

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 6

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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You can't beat ApplicantLab!
January 01 | 2018
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     By ha90830d 0 0

About me: I am an Asian male working in IT consulting (but not from India). I just got admitted to Wharton in R1 as a reapplicant. Last year, I was rejected after wait list.

As the school didn’t provide feedback after rejection, I was seeking any possible way to enhance my package besides English and interview practice. That’s when I came across ApplicantLab. I tried the free module and immediately decided to purchase it because it specifically pointed out the strategy for people like me who want to transition from IT consulting to strategy consulting. That REALLY surprised me because I thought such tool like many admission books in the marketplace can only provide general advice, but Maria did an amazing job making an interactive platform able to tailor to each one’s situation.

Compared to the price of 1-on-1 consultant package, ApplicantLab is totally a steal. As it has one flat price regardless how many schools I used, it really has more than what I could use. Particularly, the “Prewriting” module is super helpful. It not only has a detailed “Review advice” for each essay question but also has a check list for me to check if my essay covers everything. In addition, like other reviews had said, Maria is very helpful and replied very fast for additional questions I have. There were several time she replied even within one hour!

Lastly, as my interview last year didn’t work out. I also purchased 1 mock interview with Maria. Maria’s feedback is extremely helpful and to the point to me. Even though she gave feedback right after the mock interview, she was able to capture everything I said and gave detailed feedback for each question. I got several insights into adcom’s mindset and developed better answers throughout our discussions.

In short, I would highly recommend ApplicantLab for every one even already having 1-on-1 consultant package. Thank you, Maria!

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     By mercip 0 0

I used ApplicantLab for my applicants to Harvard, Stanford, and Wharton in Round 1, and was accepted to all 3. Private admissions consultants were so so expensive and not an option for me, so I took the leap, and could not be happier about my choice.

The service is unconventional as a concept, but superbly executed by Maria and is (to me) a gamechanger. I had questions about how effective an online system would be, and am blown away by how much direction it gave my essays and my interview prep. I felt super comfortable with my essays by the end of the process, and went through so many fewer iterations than I read about from other applicants. I cannot imagine any admissions consultant service being more helpful or adding more value to my admissions process.

Thanks again Maria!! And if you're already a self-driven, motivated applicant, then there really is no need to shell out thousands - the system works superbly.

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     By wishmeluck123 2 5

I used ApplicantLab for my Round 1 applications this season, and it is truly amazing (and I made it into my top choice schools!)
Maria has put a lot of time and effort into developing this tool that pretty much answers every question you have (or even questions you should have had but hadn't thought of) and walks you through each step of the application process. The questions that Maria lays out on the tool are meant for you to be introspective and think about what truly matters to you, and in the process, create essays that are true reflections of who you are as a person. The best part about ApplicantLab is that it does not interfere with your creative freedom at all, but in fact, encourages it. Also, Maria's essay advice is tailored to each specific essay for each school, and is absolutely fantastic. Her videos in particular are super helpful, and make you feel like you always have someone who is looking out for you. Maria's advice is always honest and straightforward, and helps you not get freaked out by the plethora of misconceptions out there on MBA forums.
Maria herself is such a lovely person. Every time I emailed her, she always took the time to provide detailed answers to my questions and really looked out for me.
Overall, dare I say that this tool can more than replace any admissions consultant - and for such a reasonable price, it is SO worth it! Thank you, Maria!

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     By terracehouse 3 1

I used ApplicantLab for my MIT Sloan Round 1 application and I plan to use it for my Round 2 apps as well. I am using ApplicantLab for 5 MBA apps and I'm sure I could choose more.... and it's just one flat fee! Anyways, I received my MIT Sloan acceptance call last Tuesday for Round 1 with a full fellowship!! I am over the moon and I owe a lot to Maria's ApplicantLab!! I know it wouldn't have been possible without the help of ApplicantLab's step-by-step (like incredibly granular) instructions on how to structure my ENTIRE application. Maria gives solid guidance on whichever path you decide to take with your apps (e.g. she provides great feedback on each of the pics for the Booth main essay, as well).

I thought the "Review Advice" in the pre-writing section was INCREDIBLY helpful as I had trouble distilling what I thought would be relevant to the Sloan community. It definitely pushed me in the right direction and I have to give a significant amount of credit to Maria for helping me get there.

The flexibility of the self-pace style of ApplicantLab was also a boon as I was able to get assistance on my app whenever I wanted without relying on calling a consultant who may or may not answer the phone right away.

For those who are worried that ApplicantLab isn't personalized enough... don't fret. It goes very in-depth and highlights your traits that are desired by each school. You just have to do some thinking while in the brainstorming phase -- the same kind internal digging you'd do with a regular consulting service.

In sum, ApplicantLab was a very valuable resource during my R1 application cycle and I wouldn't be in my current position without it! 10/10 recommend if you want bang-for-the-buck help getting into a top MBA program!

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Comments [4]
1 Commented by Bulleride on December 31, 2017
Hi friend,
I was about to buy the Applicant Lab package but just wanted to understand if I should buy it now or later. I will be taking GMAT in March, 2018, i.e. planning to join the classes in 2019 if all goes well. I understand that I should take it now itself as the subscription/account doesn't expire. What do you suggest?
2 Commented by terracehouse on January 02, 2018
Hey,

Currently, the subscription does not expire. She wants to incentivize people to start as soon as possible! So I recommend getting the package now!
3 Commented by aopotter on January 06, 2018
Hi,

I'm looking to apply for MIT Sloan next year like and I have few question if you may. How Applicant Lab helped you to get fellowship? The dashboard seems that has only three stages (Strategy-Preparation-Writing) and supporting documents.

Also, do the team help to review essays and resume after I'm done?
4 Commented by terracehouse on January 07, 2018
I think Applicant Lab helped me frame my story / my strengths more clearly. ApplicantLab Premium has a lot steps within those stages you mentioned to help you distill your story. I didn't have ApplicantLab review my essay and resume. I had my friends do that. I think creating your initial draft of essays through ApplicantLab coupled with having your friends thoroughly review grammar/cohesion are what helped me create a more compelling story. Also, properly preparing for the interview is key. Applicantlab kinda helped me with that as well but I used YouTube and LiveWire more for that.
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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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