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Joined: Feb 11, 2018
750 Q50 V42
I remember to signing up with an email for a call back from Karthik sometime in March 2019. Karthik was recommended to me by a classmate of mine who went to SAID-Oxford. I liked how professional he was on the first call itself. We spoke for an hour, I remember, where we discussed everything from career goals to likely schools to aim for, to how I can build my profile up in the 6-7 month period I had. Karthik, from day 1 I felt was a thorough professional, always sticking to his deadlines. His school suggestion and the schools I had in mind after considerable research almost matched barring 1 school. I liked his services so much that after I had worked with him for 5 schools, I ended up extending it to an 8 school package. I was able to remain confident and calm in the entire application season, knowing well that Karthik had my back.
Karthik, I have to say, came across as a little conservative initially, though in hindsight it was clear that I was the person who overestimated. Karthik told me that Booth, the college I was aiming for, is going to be a little tough. I was fixated on applying to Booth. He also gave me not so flattering reviews about my writing style. I felt bad, at that time, I have to say now. But not anymore I think given that I got into Fuqua, one of my dream schools, with a substantial scholarship. What I realised in the entire process was that Karthik was strict just to ensure that we as applicants are disciplined and focussed in the entire high pressure application process. In hindsight, it was clear that Karthik being strict initially was him keeping the best interests of me in mind and nothing else.
A few other things about Karthik are also really commendable. He is a thorough professional. I applied to Booth just because it was an M7 and I wanted to apply to one M7 at least and test the waters. Karthik probably knew that given my background and achievements, Booth was going to be very difficult. He mentioned so. But we still went ahead just because I had forced. I have to say the most time on an application Karthik had spent was on my Booth application. We spent around a month and a half on an application Karthik knew was going to be somewhat difficult just because I had insisted. I did not end up converting Booth but I was floored by his professionalism.
Karthik is also actually flexible too though he might claim otherwise. If he knows there is a deadline approaching fast, he will take up more work than is needed from his part. The Fuqua deadline was fast approaching in my case and Karthik took up multiple tasks a single day, for eg : he used to see my resume, my essay, my goals all in a single day, without cribbing as to why I am putting him under so much burden all of a sudden.
Karthik's interview preparations are amazing. The Fuqua interview was the first interview I was giving after a gap of 5 years. That I was able to convert it was because Karthik had done his best to calm me down and give me the necessary confidence to do well in the interview. Even during his school specific brainstorming calls, he does not just stick to the agenda and discuss about only the school. Like a true friend, he enquires about everything going on in the application cycle, anything that is lagging behind in the process, etc. In short Karthik is flexible to the extent possible for him. Karthik helps with scholarship reconsideration prep as well. I was able to increase my scholarship from negligible to substantial, at one of the schools mentioned below, because of his astute guidance.
I have admits from Fuqua, UNC, Rice jones all with substantial scholarships thanks to Karthik Palaniapan and his unbelievable guidance. I have found a mentor and most importantly a friend, in him!!!