July 14, 2019

Joined: Jun 22, 2019

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Phenomenal (adj.) - definition: DEBBIE CHOY


If you look in the dictionary for the definition of PHENOMENAL, you will see a photo of Debbie Choy. All thanks to Debbie, I am headed to a top 10 program this fall and I could not be more thrilled!!! Debbie went above and beyond in every single way for me. Debbie’s talent as a coach and a partner, her ability to highlight the most compelling parts of your story, her constant cheerleading and her honest but casual style are just 4 of many things that make her an all-star MBA consultant. If you want to work with the best, work with Debbie. No contest. When I got into my dream school, she said “OMG, I HAVE LITERAL TEARS OF JOY” – that’s how close we got and how dedicated she is to your success.

I worked with Debbie on a 6 school package. I have a very non-traditional background: many years working in high technology, Humanities double major from a top public university and definitely more of a “poet” than a “quant”. I also had a well below average GMAT score. I opted to go with Debbie because 1) I didn’t want to go through the process blind, 2) I wanted to get the application process right the first time (versus re-applying) and 3) Debbie went to a school I have the utmost respect for. I also work for a startup and my schedule is crazy – I needed someone to be the “hammer” and make sure I got things done on time. I wanted to present myself in the best possible light and given how unique my background was, I didn’t really know how to shape my narrative. Enter Debbie!

My results blew me away: 2 straight admits w/ 1 scholarship, 4 waitlists (Dartmouth Tuck, UVA Darden, NYU Stern and CMU Tepper). I expected to get into 1 school max – not to have multiple options. And I cleared the waitlist at my dream school and am headed there!

I’ll never forget our kickoff call when I told her how many schools I was applying to (hint: 10+). Debbie just smiled and said “Ok, it’s all about execution then!” She was constantly positive, always up-lifting. From taking the GMAT multiple times to then taking the GRE to dealing with one of my recommenders bailing last minute, Debbie was consistently calm, cool and collected (even when I certainly was not). She always helped me find creative solutions, pushed me to produce the highest quality drafts I could and really helped me present myself in the strongest possible way. If an essay was headed in the wrong direction, she wasn’t afraid to tell me and have us start over – which was very confidence-inspiring. She remembered key aspects of my story and found new ways to tell the same story in a way that would appeal to each school. I was so impressed with the depth of Debbie’s knowledge; for instance, the way we prepped for my Darden interview was completely different than how we prepped for Tuck. In applying to so many schools, I even accidentally sent her a document for one of the schools I was not working with her on – and she reviewed it! When I offered to retroactively pay her, she declined and just said she “hoped it was helpful”. She is one of the most kind-hearted, dedicated and altruistic people I’ve worked with through my career. When I was in “waitlist purgatory” for what felt like forever, Debbie helped me figure out creative ways to update AdComs and keep the ball rolling. And, most significantly, she demonstrated boundless empathy and support for me during a year where I lost a family member midway through the application season, completely unexpectedly. I could not have asked for more from an admissions consultant - who has since become a friend.

Despite how much self-doubt I had through the process, Debbie consistently built me up and never acted like my many silly questions about short answers on the applications were silly. The application process is stressful: you feel the highest of highs and the lowest of lows and the waiting in between can drive you crazy. Debbie was there through it all – reviewing essays I had grown tired of reviewing, pushing me to produce the best possible drafts and even making herself available to one of my recommenders if he had questions. She really gets on the same side of the river as you and is side-by-side with you as you navigate this stressful and intense process. You have to work with Debbie. I would do it all again if I could – and I’m already jealous of the lucky folks who get to work with her this application season.

Knowing I want to go into tech entrepreneurship, Debbie told me: “If you ever start a company, I want to be one of your investors”. :) Well, what you invest in the process with Debbie you will get back tenfold.

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