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Joined: Jun 10, 2018
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Hey all! So first off and to preface my entire review, I applied for Harvard, Stanford, Sloan, and Wharton. These are obviously very difficult schools, but I did have hope that my unique background combined with a strong consultant could pull me through. In the interest of transparency however, I just wanted to state that I was not able to secure any of the four schools, not even an interview. Take from that what you will in regards to whether or not my review is tainted, but I do believe I am not one to be so affected. At the end of the day, I have other opportunities that I can aim for, and so this does not faze me too much. I do think everyone here would appreciate knowing how my process with Drew went though, to not make the same mistakes that I made.
Alright, so into the process itself. Perhaps because of my origins as a PhD candidate, coming a bit out of left field that it ended up being hard for Drew - though the initial consultations had left me assured I would be in good hands, with someone who knew what to do with my background.
We started with a survey that I returned to Drew on the 11th of November 2018, which I suppose marks the first day of the consultation process. This was where the first red flag appeared, and perhaps I should have done something about this then. Once I completed the survey, nothing came out of it - nadda. There was no follow up discussing the results of the survey, or even later on how the results could play into my application. This is a general theme that pervades the consultation process, and I would highly recommend if you are going to go with Drew, to always be ready to remind him of deadlines and things that has been done/needs to be done.
This is because the next thing that happened, was that I sent him the first draft for my resume on the 27th of November and my first draft of the Harvard essay on the 1st of December. He took four days just to get back to me on my resume with suggestions (not really any edits), and really practically all throughout it had always been four days between when I sent him a resume draft and when I receive feedback/edits from him. I would suggest to send him drafts as early as you can, and also ensure it is as close to one page as possible because Drew will not really make edits or significant suggestions to your draft until then.
The bigger problem was the first draft of my Harvard essay, which went way past the four day (96-hour) deadline as promised by Amerasia. Allegedly Drew sent me a response that never got through. We had a bit of a discussion about this, where Drew was a bit bummed out, and I was too. I did offer to dissolve the agreement, but Drew wanted to continue, and, having not much time left, I decided to take a leap of faith and continue with Drew. To be frank, I think it is fair of me to voice such concerns to him, given that we had a later start than others, and deadlines were fast approaching.
Unfortunately it happened multiple times. Five times actually - across Harvard, Wharton, and Sloan essays, and that was enough to turn everything upside down. On one occasion, Drew allegedly forgot to send me an edit until I reminded him. On the remaining four occasions, Drew was late by 7 hours, 16 hours, 36 hours, and the worse one - 83 hours (which already accounted for 48 hours where Drew asked to take two days off over Christmas). As you can imagine, when you are coming so close to the deadline, every hour counts.
So therefore, if you go with Drew, you HAVE to chase him up. Do not be like me and wait for at least 96 hours (i.e. the deadline for return of edits based on the agreement), chase him up earlier than that. He might be overwhelmed, or for whatever other reason, but it is your application - you need to take charge.
This is because Drew does do good work - he managed to make significant modifications to my resume to squeeze in everything I wanted to write within one page, and have made good edits to my essays. However, it could have been so much better if he has had more time to go through my essays - which simply did not happen due to the constant breaches of deadlines.
I considered giving him a lower rating, but given that he does do good work when he seems like he wants to do it, I simply cannot do that. I think my rating is fair given that there were significant breaches on Amerasia's side that significantly affected my applications. So yes, if you go with Drew, you have to chase him up - whether because he is too busy, or in my case maybe not feeling like he wants to help me anymore, he does not chase up my progress or check in with me. Though in that case, that is not exactly professional, especially given that I offered him the choice of dissolving our arrangement.