Kathryn Lucas

    
Number of reviews [125]


Company: Square One Prep
Packages: Square One Prep Premium Service   Square One Prep Hourly Service  
Kathryn Lucas's Reviews
1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful
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     By lucky666 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

This review is for: Square One Prep Premium Service
Consultant: Kathryn Lucas

Summary in one sentence: without Kathryn my MBA application success would not be possible.
Before I started my MBA application with Kathryn, my target school was any of the S16 schools.
But at the end, I received Columbia Business School's admission!

I did research on many consultants and used their free consultation. Kathryn was the first one I contacted. During the 40 minutes of the consultation, she didn't waste even one minute talking about her or her company: every minute was spent on me, on MY case. She listened carefully when I talked about my background, career goals, target schools and so on, taking notes. And her immediate responses on my case were already deep and thoughtful. Most importantly she provided her truthful analysis without any hesitation, even I was not her client yet.

Later on, I contacted at least 5 other top rated consulting companies on gmatclub for free consultation, expecting the same kind of services as provided by Kathryn. However, none of those free consultations came even close. For some of them, they might spend the first 15-20 minutes talking about their "superb" services and then another 10-15 minutes asking about me. For one of them, the consultant was only selling their services for almost 30 minutes! And I had to interrupt to redirect the discussion to my case!

At the end, the choice was quite obvious. I contacted Kathryn again to use her service. When Kathryn asked me if I would use her or one of her consultants, I said "you" without any hesitation, although her price was quite a bit more expensive, because I knew she was the only one that I can trust 100%!

The choice proved to be absolutely correct and worth it. From the 3+-hour deep walk-through of experience, to resume editing, to essay brainstorming and editing, to recommendation strategy, to interview mocks, every single time, Kathryn was so professionally accurate, sharp and efficient, with great care and thorough understanding of my case. She made sure my story is complete and logically making sense, and I don't divert from it, especially in my interview. I think this focus made the core message much stronger to the admission officers and the interviewer, a key to our success.

At the end, I would like to thank her again. As I said, without her, CBS is not possible for me. And I would recommend her to any MBA applicants without any hesitation, as actually I already did to a couple of potential applicants in my real life.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful
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     By shawnxu90 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

This review is for: Square One Prep Premium Service
Consultant: Kathryn Lucas

I hired Square One after doing due diligence on 6 different admissions consultants (Scott at Personal MBA Coach, Debbie at MBAMission, Judith at Fortuna were the other top contenders for me). I needed help telling my story in a concise way (public ivy, 5 years in consulting and tech, 3.4 GPA, 740 GMAT).

I'm happy to report that, with Square One's support, I was accepted into Wharton's Lauder program (MBA/MA International Studies joint degree). This is a program I've been dreaming about for the last 5 years, and they made it happen.

Before Square One, I actually started working with Stacey Blackman, who set me up with Paul, one of their veterans. The guy was totally unprepared for our first call - he was late, did not set an agenda, and was reading my resume for the first time as he rambled. I bailed after he completely missed our second call. Unforgivable at $300+ per hour.

Thankfully, Square One was another level of professionalism. I was set up with Josh, who was really patient and spent hours with me to refine my business school story.

Key areas that he excelled in, in order of importance - helped set up my recommenders so that their letters could thoughtfully add more to my story, completely reformatted my resume, and shared essays from a ton of previously successful admits to my top choice schools (inspired my own writing).

Key areas that he needed to improve - Josh wasn't a huge value add for my essays. Writing these are more of a personal journey anyway, but it would have been better to have his frequent input. Josh became less and less available as time went on, often taking days / up to a week to respond (when we started, we were in touch over text and he would have updates for me within literally seconds), as he had a side business that he worked on while advising me. When Kathryn got this feedback, she let Josh go. I then worked directly with Kathryn, the founder. She helped me get through the finish line, and she is by far the best admissions consultant I have worked with. Her insight on what's important to the schools really showed. If you have the chance, work with Kathryn.

One area that I went to someone else for - Judith at Fortuna ran an incredible mock interview for Wharton's Team-Based Discussion. Judith previously worked at the Wharton adcom, and it showed. A group of us jumped on a conference call, and walked through a real-life TBD facilitated by Judith. She gave us really solid individualized feedback after the fact. If I had not done this, I would not have had nearly the same confidence in the real TBD. Kathryn at Square One did not offer this service - I wish she did!

Final takeaways - I think the polish on my rec letter requests, resume, and interview prep all contributed to getting my acceptance letter. My advice is to spend a lot of time finding the right consultant who is backed with the right resources. I found that with Square One, and am pretty thankful for it.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful
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     By MNKellogg 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

This review is for: Square One Prep Premium Service
Consultant: Kathryn Lucas

Prior to working with Square One Prep I interviewed numerous other consultancies and went with SOP as it was clear that it was the best place to get the most individualized advice to get into my dream schools. I cannot reaffirm strongly enough that my initial rationale was validated after working with the SOP team. I worked numerous hours hand-in-hand with both my consultant and Kathryn herself. This includes spending hours on the phone with Kathryn from my hotel in Evanston the night prior to my interview with Kellogg. I can unequivocally say that working with Kathryn helped me open the doors to getting into my dream school. I received such tailored advice to highlight the uniqueness of my qualities despite coming from an overrepresented demographic. I was pushed to soul search and write truly genuine essays that actually helped me progress personally, in addition to getting into Kellogg.

Key takeaways:

I had subpar performance on my GMAT and was able to get into Kellogg despite the unflattering score. Kathryn helped me articulate my unique story in such a way that adcoms were able to look past my GMAT score to see the valuable addition that I would be to their class and their alumni base.

I was waitlisted originally yet, once again, Kathryn gave me the insight to navigate the process from everything to writing follow-up correspondence with the admissions department to getting additional and follow-up recommendations. Had it not been for her guidance, I am confident that I would have made missteps that could have resulted in me not getting off of the waitlist.

I cannot recommend a partner to help you navigate the entire process from resume construction through waitlist follow-ups more strongly than Square One Prep.

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     By forrestwaierduo 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

This review is for: Square One Prep Premium Service
Consultant: Kathryn Lucas

Yale SOM!! I still can’t believe my dream has just come true!!

When I started thinking about my business school application, I knew the process was not going to easy. Fighting the battle yourself could be very intimating; therefore I decided to work with a consultant. I did weeks of research and due-diligence, calling more than 10 admissions consultant firms. I finally decided to work with Square One Prep! Starting from the first call, Kathryn is the only person that showed genuine care about my application. I felt confident like never before going into my application. Just by speaking with me for 30-40 minutes, she spotted highlights in my life/career and came up with a great theme for my application story.

Here are a few instances that show Kathryn and her team is unbelievably amazing:

1. Coming in with a fairly strong academic background, I thought I was not going to have any problems with the GMAT. Turns out that was not the case. I took the GMAT several times and the highest score that I could achieve was still about 40 points below the average at the schools that I wanted to apply to. While other firm consultants may advise you to go for a less competitive school, Kathryn encouraged me to still apply to my interested schools! Both Kathryn and Faryn worked with me to strengthen all other components of my application and minimize my weaknesses. At those extremely competitive schools, there is usually no room for errors. Kathryn reviewed everything Faryn and I created and definitely made sure that my applications were as perfect as they could be!

2. Waitlist Experience – Another wonderful experience with Square One Prep! Kathryn and her team never, never give up on you!! Kathryn, Faryn and I immediately jumped into action! There were hours spent with me during the 4 months of waitlist period for additional interest letters, and waitlist advice! Not once did I feel like they were giving up on me. I had submitted several various updates to the school and every single one was right on time, before the school conducts another waitlist reductions. Kathryn’s guidance on timing was just incredible! And the additional materials that I submitted were all high-quality (my admission confirms it). They really meant it when they said they are there to guide me to success. Their sole purpose is to help clients reach success, not to beat around the bush and try to earn more profit.

For business school applications absolutely go with Square One Prep!
In the years to come you will realize that it is one of the best decisions you have made for yourself!

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     By mbabound61519 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

This review is for: Square One Prep Hourly Service
Consultant: Kathryn Lucas

Square One Prep was the only firm I wanted to partner with through the MBA application process. Their personal and tailored approach to working with candidates was exactly what I needed.

I knew I wanted to work with Square One even before the end of the free 30-minute consultation. Kathryn, the founder, asked me thoughtful and prodding questions about my work experience and post-MBA goals. She had an incredible ability to immediately identify gaps or weaknesses in my story/progression that I hadn't even considered. On our call alone, she pushed me to explore the "why's" and the "how's" and wasn't satisfied with canned answers. It was the wake up call I needed before sitting down to put together a thoughtful application.

Once I started the process, I felt like I was Square One's only client. My Square One partner answered every question I had -- from the broad strokes ones to the most minutely detailed ones, the anticipated ones to the emergency-late-night-pre- submission-button-click ones. She kept me centered, motivated, and on target. She was always incredibly responsive and proactive, ensuring I was staying on schedule. Even when I realized I had overlooked something on one application and made a last minute decision to apply to an additional program, she continuously delivered the highest quality of service.

Applying to MBA programs is a mentally grueling, exhausting, and often painful process. Square One's infrastructure made the process as seamless and user-friendly as it could be. I felt prepared and supported every step of the way with a personalized schedule. From the resume, to the LORs, to the essays, it was like I had a whole "team" behind me. I write "team" because it's all of the on-demand information, expertise, and infrastructure you could ever need to support you as an applicant -- but the end product is 100% you and your voice. Square One Prep's value is ensuring that your application shines the best light on who you are, what you've done, and what you want to do. Because of my partnership with Square One, I know that my application showcased the best version of me.

I was hoping to be the last pick of each school I applied to -- the one who snuck into the accepted class. With Square One, I got a full ride to one top five MBA program and an $80,000 scholarship to another!

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     By fedesucre 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

This review is for: Square One Prep Premium Service
Consultant: Kathryn Lucas

I applied to 9 top MBA programs in Round 2. My numbers were below average for M7 schools, so I applied to a wide spread of schools (#1-20). Kathryn and my Square One Prep advisor helped me with 1 comprehensive application, but the service was useful in crafting all others. I got 4 acceptances and 2 waitlists. One of my waitlists was my dream school (a top 2 program) and I was recently admitted!!

Here are some highlights from my experience with Square One Prep:

- My SOP advisor was a great match. He was an alum from my desired program and had lots of experience coaching MBA candidates. He really understood my values, passions, and goals, and helped me identify the best stories to put together compelling essays.
- My resume was significantly improved. I had a very good initial draft, but SOP helped me make it solid. I was able to say so much on one carefully crafted page. And I was able to use the same resume for all applications.
- On all documents for my desired program, it was great to have the constant reviews of my SOP advisor and Kathryn’s additional feedback. Both of them were super honest and thorough throughout the process.
- I had to explain extenuating circumstances that affected my academic performance. SOP gave me the confidence and support to deal with this successfully.
- I had interviews with 6 MBA programs. I spent 2 hours on Skype with Kathryn preparing for one of them: 30 mins of mock interview and 90 mins of feedback. This was SUPER helpful!
- I was waitlisted at two of my top 3 programs, including my desired one. Kathryn helped me put together a strategy and I was admitted in Round 3. I cannot emphasize enough how helpful SOP was during the wait list process. The last two months made all the investment and previous work worth it.

If I had to do it all over again, I would hire Square One Prep earlier in the process and I would apply in Round 1!

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     By justgetitdone 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

This review is for: Square One Prep Premium Service
Consultant: Kathryn Lucas

I’m 2 for 2 with Square One Prep! With Kathryn’s help I got into Harvard Business School and Harvard Kennedy School. Kathryn helps you clarify your message so you can get into the best schools in the world. Kathryn gives you her time. This is very valuable. I spent over 14 hours on the phone with her. This helped me because she simplified my big ideas into a one page essay that the Harvard admission’s committee loved.

You should hire Kathryn if you want to work with the best. You should hire Kathryn if you want her to (virtually) kick you in the butt to make sure you craft the best application possible. Tough love isn’t for everyone. It works perfect me, and that’s why I go to Kathryn when I need results. I highly recommend Kathryn to anyone who has big ideas and needs the best graduate program so they can accelerate to their goals.

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Helped me reach new heights
April 21 | 2017
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     By gniapou 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

This review is for: Square One Prep Premium Service
Consultant: Kathryn Lucas

Square One Prep and especially Kathryn were instrumental in my success to get a top MBA (Harvard).
Before discussing with Kathryn, I did not really believe that I could stand a chance to get into a top MBA. By discussing several times with her even before we formally started working together, I started believing in myself and I got the confidence that I could aim for the top with Kathryn's support and guidance.
Kathryn was a great support throughout the application process, from the initial draft of the timeline all the way to the coaching for interviews.
She was fully dedicated to her mission and she made herself available whenever I needed her, even on a very short notice. Kathryn acted as a passionate coach and ensured that I met all the interim deadlines she set for me. Moreover she really helped me translate my experience to the best application possible and I do think that this was key in my success.
I deeply appreciated Kathryn’s honesty in her approach. She made sure that I understood that success would come from my hard work and that I was fully committed to get the best outcome.
Finally Kathryn is a nice and charming person and I enjoyed discussing with her even beyond the framework of the MBA applications.
Keep up the good work Kathryn!
Thank you for everything!

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Highly Recommended
April 12 | 2017
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     By AS2017 0 0
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

This review is for: Square One Prep Premium Service
Consultant: Kathryn Lucas

As an individual from a science background hoping to transition into the business world, a top MBA seemed the clear choice. What was perhaps less apparent was the route to entry. Indeed with CV's, multiple essays, recommendations and detailed written applications the process was daunting to say the least. Square One Prep, and Kathryn more specifically were truly invaluable in guiding through this process and achieving success.

Kathryn provided a rigorous, systematic approach to tackle the application. She truly got to know me as an individual - beyond the numbers, and in the process enabled me to find and express my voice throughout each and every essay. Further unlike many admissions consultants Kathryn genuinely cares for her clients, and was available day and night for advice and support!

With her help I achieved admission to my top choice business school and could not be more grateful. If your contemplating the use of Square One Prep, pull the trigger and go for it - I guarantee you won't regret it!

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     By sidduvicster 22 10
The reviewer was admit to the schools that they applied to:

This review is for: Square One Prep Hourly Service
Consultant: Kathryn Lucas

I first contacted Square One Prep, and specifically its owner, Kathryn, on the recommendation of a friend. I was initially skeptical as the fees seemed high especially considering that I am an Indian applicant. But after my first discussion with her, I knew, if I had to hire an admission consultant, it would have to be her. There were consultants who tell you what to write in your applications based on what you think the Adcom wants to hear (the polar opposite of what Kathryn told me to do)! Kathryn asked me to dive deep and think about why I really want to do a MBA and tell my story based on being authentic, real. She carefully listened and analyzed my profile to provide me a path ahead for my apps that actually aligned with my passions for what is happening with the automation revolution in manufacturing. Before I talked with Kathryn I was going with the "strategy consulting" angle that other consultants had told to go with even though I couldn't really create ties to my background or excitement about the direction.

Kathryn was encouraging and positive throughout my application process. The process is stressful enough and there were times I was apprehensive about proceeding ahead. But she was always just a call or mail away to support me when required.

But even after all this, I wasn't actually successful in my first attempt in R1. But she kept my hopes up even after that. She kept guiding me on my apps for R2 and constantly checking up on me. She even offered to look at several schools essays for free because she knew I couldn't afford her, but wanted me to have the best shot. She spent hours on my work - for free. My efforts and her dedication to my efforts and me finally paid off and I got into one of my target schools!

Her moral encouragement during my initial failed attempts kept my spirits up and helped me focus in R2. She went above her role as a consultant and rather acted as a guide. She made this incredibly exhausting process worth it. had she not helped me, I would not be heading to McDonough in the fall.

I suggest anyone thinking of hiring a consultant to just set-up an initial call with Kathryn and then...I trust that will be enough for you to know that Square One is not like other companies. You will find making your decision to work with them easy.

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