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After working with Lorraine at MBA Prep on my Harvard and Stanford applications this past fall, I was admitted to both schools round one, and I truly believe that success stemmed from my work with Lorraine. I have to admit, I was very skeptical about the concept of a consultant at the beginning of the business school process, but looking back, working with Lorraine was incredibly helpful and absolutely worth the time and investment. I come from a traditional background (consulting/finance), but received mixed messages from my introductory calls with a few different consulting firms about my chances to get into one of my top two schools. I ended up choosing Lorraine because from the very beginning, she was intelligent about the application process and the various business schools, she always asked the right questions, she was honest about the good and the bad, and she was invested not only in my application process but also in me as person.
During our time together, Lorraine was incredibly helpful throughout the planning/brainstorming, writing, and interview prep phases of the application process. Lorraine was very hands on and very engaged from her consultant seat, and that stems from the fact that she was genuinely interested in helping me position myself in the best way possible for success. I found Lorraine to be incredibly flexible and forgiving of unpredictable work schedules, and she was willing to work with shorter deadlines if it would help my application. Lorraine was also very patient—she was a great listener and always willing to put my needs first throughout this time consuming process, and I found this to help alleviate stress. Lorraine was also very knowledgeable on a wide range of topics thanks to her diverse career experience. This was one of the more helpful aspects of working with Lorraine—she helped tease out and think through exactly what I wanted to pursue career wise in life and more importantly, why. Lorraine was also willing to go above and beyond traditional consultant services—I would constantly get emails from Lorraine with articles on leaders in my career field of interest, industry studies that were relevant to my career goals, or blog posts about the schools I was applying to.
I felt like I had a fair critic, friend, and mentor with me along the way for every step of the application process, and I could not recommend Lorraine any more highly.
Joined: Apr 11, 2013
Should you apply in round 1 or round 2? If you still can’t decide after reading all the MBA blogs and forums, go with the round for which Lorraine still has capacity – she’s that good. Having applied to b-school on my own before, I’m certain Lorraine’s guidance and MBA Prep School’s systematic approach to the application process are what got me results this time around.
• Top 10 UG business school, 3.6 GPA, 710 GMAT
• Non-traditional career path at little-known companies, solid international exposure
• Limited leadership experience outside of work
Never would I have thought I could get into Wharton with those credentials. Applying to Wharton was Lorraine’s suggestion. I thought she was crazy, but I’m very glad I trusted her, as I’m going there this fall.
My favorite things about Lorraine:
1. She only takes on a few clients each round and is deeply invested in every one of their applications.
2. She can help clients find dimensions that are truly unique to them because she 1) spends a lot of time getting to know them, 2) listens well, and 3) has good instincts. She saw value in things that seemed very trivial to me but really captured who I am and probably made me more memorable to the ad com.
3. She has an uncanny knack for finding the common thread among seemingly unrelated bits and pieces. There were a lot of things I wanted to communicate to the ad com. Without a strategic approach, I would’ve come across schizophrenic. Lorraine helped me figure out my core identity, thus enabling me to weave the different components of each application into one compelling narrative.
4. Her diverse experiences (corporate/nonprofit/creative) and knowledge of many different industries translate into her ability to help clients 1) best position what they’ve done and, 2) clearly define what they want to do after b-school. I struggled with the latter, but under Lorraine’s guidance, I was able to transform a vague vision into concrete goals and articulate how an MBA could help me achieve them.
5. She gets the nuanced differences among top schools. The information I gathered on the schools were a lot to digest. Lorraine helped me isolate the unique characteristics on which each school prides itself, characteristics applicants must understand if they want to craft targeted applications that demonstrate fit, which is critical. If you work with Lorraine, you won’t be doing much recycling/copying & pasting.
6. Like a good personal trainer, she will motivate you until the very end, past writer’s blocks, burnouts and breakdowns, and the point where you just want to submit what you have and “get it over with.”
7. She is very understanding. As a former MBA student and seasoned consultant, she gets how exhausting it is to apply to school while working and how frustrating it is to sit in front of the computer for hours only to write two sentences. She kept me sane and focused when I wanted to pull my hair out.
8. She is punctual with calls and quick with feedback.
9. She is a cool person with a good sense of humor and a quirky personality. Very easy to talk to.
10. She loves what she does.
No Lorraine, no Wharton. I <3 Lorraine!