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Jessica Shklar Reviews

Company: mbaMission

After graduating from Harvard College with a degree in anthropology, Jessica Shklar worked in nonprofit education, first doing curriculum development for an adult education center and then in the admissions office of a small university in Los Angeles, where she advised applicants to both the undergraduate college and several graduate programs, including business school. While there, she developed and delivered workshops around the country on Selecting the Right College and How to Write an Effective Application Essay. Having been accepted to every business school to which she applied, including Stanford, Kellogg and Yale, Jessica ultimately chose to attend HBS, where she completed her MBA with distinction (graduating in the top 10%). After starting work, she volunteered in the New York City public school system, helping high school seniors with their college applications. She has worked at several Fortune 100 companies, including American Express and JPMorgan Chase, where she was the quality leader and a senior vice president for Chase Home Finance. Jessica is also a Six Sigma Master Black Belt, with specific expertise in Six Sigma deployment and initialization.

Source: http://www.mbamission.com/about/?display=team&name=jessica-shklar

5.0 /5 Average Rating
Based on 151 reviews
April 14, 2021
PMBA2023

Joined: Apr 14, 2021

Posts: 0

Kudos: 0

Verified score:
760 Q50 V42

Experience of interview preparation with Jessica

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I partnered with Jessica during my reapplication process to prepare for the HBS interview and post-interview reflection. Her contributions were critical in me getting admitted to HBS.

I first spoke with Jessica when I was putting together my essay for HBS reapplication. While I came to the 30-minute free consultation with multiple, half-baked ideas, Jessica quickly grasped the essence of the story I wanted to convey and shared a couple of powerful narratives to shape my story better. She cut through the noise and helped me find the central theme for my essay. As a reapplicant, I had a bunch of questions that she answered extremely patiently and more importantly, candidly.

I reached out to Jessica again once I got invited to interview with HBS for interview preparation. During the mock interview, Jessica's diligence and preparation were visible as her questions covered the depth and breadth of my application. She has a great pulse of the admission committees’ though process and some of the mock interview questions came up in my final interview! Her feedback was well-rounded, focusing on the content of my answers as well as the softer aspects of communication. Thanks to her I felt confident walking into the interview.

However, the thing that stood out the most for me was Jessica's "at-cause professionalism". In a process that can be stressful due to tight timelines, she ensured timely discussions and delivery of deliverables. Even the one instance where she was unavailable, she let me know months in advance and ensured that I was tagged to another consultant for support. Jessica always went out of her way to share material/suggestions, irrespective of whether I was working with her or not.

While we worked together for only a few months, I wish I had come to her in my first year of applications. She is a wonderful thought partner to have by your side as you navigate through B-school applications.

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April 13, 2021
Raches

Joined: Apr 13, 2021

Posts: 0

Kudos: 0

must pick Jessica from mbaMission

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I first started with Jessica for CBS and Wharton. The best part about working with her is the first Brainstorming Session. After this session, your more or less in great shape for your essays.

Ultimately, I got accepted to both schools in Round 1. With a scholarship from Wharton!

Because of my confidence in getting into two schools, I thought I would apply to HBS myself in Round 2. Big Mistake! The essay was the most challenging, especially when there is no word limit. I was too verbose and was losing the plot.

I decided to take her up one last school with literally a month to go for my deadline. She was really accommodating to take on this application despite her prior commitments. She mentioned " I always have time for my clients", which was really sweet. Her advice was exactly what I needed and ultimately led to my acceptance.

In short, pick Jessica at mbaMission as she is a great listener and at the end of the day, you want someone to hear you out completely before they advise you on structuring your application.

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This reviewer has not participated on GMAT Club but it is a REAL person and a REAL review. GMAT Club has verified this test-taker's identity through GMAC/Pearson Vue Score Reporting system or .edu email address and confirmed that this reviewer indeed took the GMAT, is unique, and has not submitted multiple reviews.
April 11, 2021
FrenchToastFreddy

Joined: Aug 13, 2018

Posts: 0

Kudos: 0

Do yourself a favour, choose Jessica Shklar and forget everything else.

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TLDR: Do yourself a favour, choose Jessica Shklar and forget everything else.

First Impressions:
Meeting Jessica via the free consultation (4-school package for R2 apps) sold me on working with her. I had had preview sessions with two other top firms, but those felt cold and artificial compared to Jessica’s style. At the time, I was in the process of studying for my GMAT and one other firm was unwilling to start working with me until I completed the exam. I was running out of time for R2 apps, and Jessica understood that the application process more often than not is a messy and haphazard process. Coupled with experiencing her deep insight over the 30-minute call, Jessica accommodating the real-world circumstances of busy applicants was yet another mark of her competence in my opinion.

Consultation process:
She was extremely organized which was key in knocking down 4 B-school applications to M7 schools in the period of 4 months, while also providing morale support as I studied for the GMAT. There were established rules in place to maintain the organization and flow of essay reviews, brainstorming chat etc, but when it mattered, she was willing to go above and beyond, working day and night and even with at one point with a badly sprained wrist (on her dominant hand)! And she came through more than once.
Regarding essays, Jessica is not merely an editor - she is storyteller and muse. Initially, when you do try your best to describe your own life, you realize how it pales in comparison to the final draft. This is not because it is embellished or anything like that; it’s because she helps you tease out your motivations and cogent reasons behind the key plots in your story and stitches it in a way that is amazing. I know she is a habitual reader (sometimes finishing books in a single day) and so story telling isn’t just a job - it’s part and parcel of who she is, and this benefit is reflected in the essays she helps you with.

Conclusion:
One of the first things she helps you with is review any pre-existing school choices you’ve made. She gets to know you and then accessed for compatibility with your POST-MBA goals, your dreams and your personality. Clearly, she isn’t just trying to crank out essays, or maximize admit rates for her firm. She genuinely wants to mold your application to represent the best version of yourself. She cannot guarantee outcomes (no consultant can), but you leave with a feeling of extreme satisfaction in the effort put towards application. I got into one of them, but it was not my dream school unfortunately. But the fact that I still write this review is testament of the positive force that is Jessica Shklar. I gained more than just an elite application package; I also gained a renewed understanding of myself.

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This reviewer has not participated on GMAT Club but it is a REAL person and a REAL review. GMAT Club has verified this test-taker's identity through GMAC/Pearson Vue Score Reporting system or .edu email address and confirmed that this reviewer indeed took the GMAT, is unique, and has not submitted multiple reviews.
April 01, 2021
satyanpolisetti

Joined: Jun 15, 2020

Posts: 0

Kudos: 0

In a League of Her Own!

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My MBA journey started in late 2018, when I decided that I wanted to pursue my MBA. Like many, my first step was to research top MBA Consulting firms. Quickly, mbaMission and more specifically, Jessica rose to the top. I had a few friends that worked with mbaMission so I knew, at the minimum, it was a great firm to partner with. In addition, I noticed that Jessica was praised by Poets&Quants as one of the Top MBA Admissions Consultants so it was a pretty easy decision to reach out to Jessica to set up a 30 minute consultation. It was evident from the onset that Jessica was EXCELLENT at her job. Jessica exceeded my expectations and here is why:

1. Unbelievable Story-Teller: Jessica is unbelievable at helping you tell YOUR story. I was worried that I was coming from an over-represented applicant pool (IB, Consulting, PE, etc.), and that I would not be able to distinguish myself from my peers. However, Jessica mitigated that very quickly for me. Her initial brain-storming document helps you think about your entire journey up until the moment you work with her. Where you grew up, which countries you traveled to, what are your hobbies, did you have a life-altering experience meeting someone, etc.? All these questions and more helped me tell my story and why I was a unique candidate. Coming from an Investment Banking background, I would of never thought that I would talk about why I started taking acting classes, and how that translated into a second career, and ultimately how it positively impacted me at work. Jessica turns over every rock to find a gem in your story.
2. Honest Feedback: I can’t say this enough. Jessica tells you what you need to hear, not what you want to hear. We went through my resume, grades, test scores and she helped me evaluate which schools were the best for me to apply to. I did not get my optimal GMAT score the first time, so she strongly advised me to re-take it even though I thought I could get in with my current score. Jessica helped me stay grounded and helped me explain that while that score might have been acceptable last year, this year’s applicant pool was much stronger, and that I needed to re-take the GMAT. Being one of the best at what she does, Jessica was able to highlight what my target school was looking for. For example, if I had a “flaw” in my resume or application, Jessica was able to focus on the positives of the setback or flaw, and focus on my strengths.

Without Jessica, there is absolutely no way I would have gotten into Columbia Business School. I am so fortunate that she had a spot open for this year’s application cycle. Her patience and guidance with me throughout the process is something I’ll always remember and be grateful for. She is truly in a league of her own.

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March 28, 2021
eastcoast2018

Joined: Jun 24, 2018

Posts: 0

Kudos: 0

Verified score:
770 Q50 V44

Jessica Shklar

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I first reached out to Jessica in early August and was aiming to apply for round 1 for just one school. I was juggling studying for the GMATs, while also trying to wrap my head around how to tell my story (not to mention all the other things like resume, letters of recommendations, short answers, etc.). Once you start the admissions process, you realize how many parts there are to it and how you would be severely disadvantaged by not having someone like Jessica on your team.

I spoke to several consultants before speaking to Jessica and she got right to the point and provided valuable feedback and insight. I knew I only had a few weeks to prepare an application for the top school so I needed someone who I could trust and count on. Jessica is so prepared, organized, and never misses a deadline. That's what she promised on the call, and she delivered 10x. I ended up applying to the top 3 schools by Round 1 and was accepted to one of them. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that Jessica was the main reason I received the acceptance. Every step of the process she provided value (even to little details like how many group members I should indicate in the extracurricular group I was part of). Those little things add up and she looks at everything holistically. Jessica got to know me super well and brought up stories to use as examples for short answers that I had forgotten about. She really knows the schools that you're applying to and has the track record to know what has been successful and not. I have already recommended her and mbamission to multiple people because I TRULY believe that you are severely disadvantaged without someone like Jessica. It's worth the investment over and over again. Even if I had not gotten into any school, I know that I would not have had any regrets because I really know that we put together the best package and story that we possibly could have - I think having no regrets is more valuable than anything else.

Thank you so so much again Jessica!!!

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March 15, 2021
zizzi

Joined: Jan 12, 2013

Posts: 4

Kudos: 6

Fantastic!

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Jessica has been an amazing guide! She was recommended to me by a former MIT Sloan grad and I did not look back. I applied to only one school and started applying c. 3 weeks before the deadline - and yet I managed to get an offer.

She worked with me intensely during the application and figured out my story much better than I could put down my own story in words! I had used a different consultant in a previous application, that was cheaper, but the care and attention that Jessica provided was honestly amazing and I would definitely say, you get your money's worth.

I am quite sure that without her help, I would have not gotten in - would highly recommend!

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February 25, 2021
msx23andme

Joined: Feb 17, 2021

Posts: 0

Kudos: 0

My relationship with Jessica and mbaMission goes back. I first had the intention of applying to a top school MBA over 7 years ago and then life got in the way. We reconnected as I started to explore Stanford’s MSX (M.S. in Management for mid-career professionals). I was admitted to the program thanks to Jessica.

In both processes Jessica was outstanding, she understood and helped me understand that it made sense for me not to pursue the MBA program back then and helped me double down on my decision to apply for Stanford’s MSX this time around. Applying to a top program can be overly stressful but with the support of Jessica it didn’t seem all that hard. Mainly because she breaks it down is multiple milestones. Her process of doing exhaustive guided brainstorm, combined with 1:1 sessions to reflect before drafting anything is a key differentiator that sets her and mbaMission apart. Jessica is also a top storyteller and will help you tell the story in a way that is engaging and authentic. Also expect no delays in her turnaround, at times it’s hard to keep up, but that’s what you want when applying to a top program: a pace keeper that guarantees that the process keeps on moving.

I would strongly recommend the end-to-end school packages, it certainly worked for me.

The level of deep connection that one develops in this process with her is unique, Jessica has become a mentor, a friend and someone I will continue to go back to as life goes on.

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February 21, 2021
enriquemarquez4

Joined: Feb 21, 2021

Posts: 0

Kudos: 0

Fantastic Consultant - Would 100% recommend

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When i started looking for an MBA admissions consultant, i did the free 30 minute sessions with a few different companies. Most of them were good, but i felt like they were just saying what i wanted to hear. They were very much like cheerleaders. When i got to the free 30 minute session with Jessica (after one of my best friends from college recommend her to me), it was a completely different experience. The 30 minutes were super productive and she was very objective with my candidacy - she highlighted what I had going for me, but most importantly, she identified my areas of weakness and proposed how she would work with me to address them. It was definitely a tough session, but that's when i realized that's exactly what i needed for the process - Someone that would be critical of my application as that would allow me to put my best foot forward. After signing up with her for the 4-school package, i was very satisfied with the service i received. She was very responsive (48 hour turnaround system) and always answered my questions thoroughly (I had lots of questions throughout the process so i really appreciated this). When i submitted my applications, i felt satisfied that regardless of the outcome i had put my best foot forward. If you want a real coach (vs. just a cheerleader), i highly recommend Jessica. Worth every dollar.

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February 19, 2021
mba2023me

Joined: Feb 19, 2021

Posts: 0

Kudos: 0

Verified score:
740 Q47 V45

The best!

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Jessica and I hit it off instantaneously in my consultation. I could tell within five minutes of speaking with her that she is deeply invested in not only her clients' success but getting to know them personally.

Working with Jessica on all of my applications only further solidified my expectations. She went above and beyond to get to know me and what matters to me so that we could craft a unique and personal story for my applications. As someone who had no experience or idea how much work the application process was going to be, she was the best partner ensuring everything was done in a timely and organized manner. During such a nerve wracking time, it was so great to know I had such an experienced and thoughtful person in my corner. It also doesn't hurt that she got me into one of my dream schools!!

I had friends that applied to business school at the same time as myself that used different consulting companies, and the amount of time and effort Jessica put into helping me was above and beyond what my friends experienced. This along with all of the amazing reasons I stated above confirmed that Jessica is the best person for the job. If I had to go through this process again I would 100% utilize Jessica's help, and thus I would recommend her to anyone and everyone!

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February 18, 2021
techconsult

Joined: May 06, 2013

Posts: 0

Kudos: 0

Phenomenal & Efficient Experience

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Jessica was an amazing coach helping me get accepted to Wharton. She had amazing insights into how to tell my story and position myself despite my weaknesses. Jessica is not only extremely caring and understanding but also effective and efficient. Her insights were golden and her turn-around was extremely fast without compromising on quality. She has her own system which I've never seen before that helps you really craft the best application possible through a guided and iterative process. She asks the right questions and her incisive mind always has you thinking long after a conversation. Jessica is able to swiftly extract your strengths and weaknesses and help craft your story in a way that will make you stand out. As an unusual candidate with a non-linear background the approach I was going to take before consulting Jessica was completely different and probably the wrong approach. With her wisdom and advice I was able to use my different background as strengths and craft a much more compelling narrative that I am sure made a big difference in me getting into the school I dreamed of.

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This reviewer has not participated on GMAT Club but it is a REAL person and a REAL review. GMAT Club has verified this test-taker's identity through GMAC/Pearson Vue Score Reporting system or .edu email address and confirmed that this reviewer indeed took the GMAT, is unique, and has not submitted multiple reviews.

45 Older and Non-Verified Reviews for Jessica Shklar