|All Reviews > Melissa Blakeslee > Melissa Blakeslee Reviews|
Joined: Mar 08, 2020
I have been out of college for 10 years and trying to get into one of the top business schools in the world seemed like a VERY daunting challenge. I was overwhelmed when I looked through the application process and knew I needed help. I found mba Mission which led me to find Melissa. It is a lot of money and I was not sure what to expect but immediately I could tell Melissa was going to get me there! She did tell me that I would get out of it what I put into it so I spent over a month getting her all the information she needed to get the process going and WOW.. She gave EXCELLENT advice, gave me beyond helpful edits on the first few drafts of my essays, and pushed me to do some online classes and other programs/ projects to make up for some of the weaknesses I had in my application. Everything she edited/ suggested is nothing that I would have done on my own. She was ALWAYS on time with giving back edits or answering emails- most of the time she even got back to me right away! I truly felt like she was in my corner, made sure I felt heard on my point of view regarding the essays, and was really fighting for me in any and every way. It was a team effort and never once did she make me feel like I was demanding too much of her time or that I was another client she had to deal with. She encouraged me when my score for the GRE didn't raise at first and she celebrated all my small wins along the way before getting accepted. I am so happy that I was paired with her as she was my rock the ENTIRE time. I WOULD NOT HAVE GOTTEN MY ACCEPTANCE INTO ROSS BUSINESS SCHOOL WITHOUT MELISSA. I think the best decision you will make is signing up for this service and then asking for Melissa. You can tell she cares and genuinely is fighting with you. Melissa, if you read this, THANK YOU<3 You have been an integral part of my success in getting in and anywhere that Ross takes me! <3
Joined: Jan 30, 2020
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Melissa is a ROCK STAR admissions consultant – she was absolutely fantastic, from start to finish. She walked me through the application process step-by-step, offering crystal clear guidance on our timeline and working relationship. Through the brainstorm exercise, she provided a comprehensive assessment of my profile and helped me craft a cohesive narrative around my candidacy – it was a crucial step that put me in a rock-solid position to succeed going forward. Once we winnowed down my target list of schools, Melissa helped me thoroughly understand what each school looked for in prospective students. With that in mind, we were able to further tailor my candidacy – she later provided strategic and tactical advice on my essays, helping me hone my structure, theme, and tone. The final product was airtight – clear, concise, and compelling. Melissa also helped polish me for interviews as well, providing detailed insights into who might interview me, what questions I should expect, and how I should answer them. It’s that laser-focused attention to detail that helped me prepare for softballs and curveballs in the interview process. And after I secured my acceptances, she helped me weigh my decision and tackle post-acceptance logistics (e.g. deposits, scholarships). Throughout the cycle, she was remarkably responsive, specific, and compassionate – her work ethic and interpersonal skills made the process painless. Overall, I cannot overstate Melissa’s tremendous value – she is a phenomenal resource and I’m so lucky to have been paired with her. She’s worth every penny!!
Joined: Jun 07, 2012
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From my initial consultation to preparing for interviews, Melissa was easy to work with, genuine, and always gave me the impression she really cared about my outcome.
As a foreigner entering the business school application process without any experience in the US college system, I found the whole thing intimidating to say the least – and the decision of which consultant to use even more stressful. After completing a free session with Melissa I was immediately confident in my choice; her extensive experience in the field, both in the university system itself as well as in a consulting capacity, was very evident. She was honest in pointing out the weaker aspects of my background, but also overwhelmingly positive about where we should focus to provide me the best chance.
Over time as we worked together, she was instrumental in helping me construct and communicate my narrative effectively. I found the brainstorming session particularly helpful for this. During the essay writing (hardest part for me), she provided quick, actionable feedback, which was always constructive and positive in nature, and made me feel like I was on the right path.
I was ultimately accepted into my first preference, a school I had initially thought was a big reach. I can confidently say this would not have been possible without Melissa’s amazing help, and so cannot recommend her enough to prospective business school applicants!
Joined: Dec 26, 2017
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Melissa's guidance and support throughout the admissions process greatly surpassed my expectations! During our initial call, I could feel her genuine interest in my background and experiences, as if I were talking to a close friend. Ultimately, with Melissa’s high-level assistance, I gained acceptance to my top two programs.
Melissa was instrumental in helping me craft my story and insured that everything always aligned with “who I am” as a person. We were able to pinpoint the weaker qualities of my application and enhance the subtle strengths, of which I would have overlooked without Melissa’s help. I was able to truly use her as a sanity check throughout the entire process, no question too small or basic. From helping with career guidance to reviewing my 9th draft of an essay, she was always there to assist.
After receiving admit calls, Melissa was one of the first people I told because I truly felt like we were a team and I knew I could not have done it without her help. I highly recommend working with Melissa to anyone applying and looking for teammate throughout the entire application process.
Joined: Jan 17, 2020
There is zero chance I would have made it through the application process without Melissa.
The primary internal debate I was having leading up to the application process was whether or not to seek professional assistance. Due to financial reasons, I thought.....maybe I could do it myself and save some money. I could NOT have been more wrong...
During my initial 30 minute free consultation very early on in the process, Melissa came prepared and ready to help. She gave me tangible next steps so that I could maximize my time between that first call and when we would begin writing essays months later. Her advice ranged from 'getting more involved in a volunteer organization I was already apart of to retaking the GRE to taking HBX CORe to improve my quantitative abilities'.
Hiring Melissa was the investment of a lifetime. It was my first large purchase, biggest financial sacrifice, and I am absolutely THRILLED with the outcome of our work together. And thrilled is a drastic understatement.
She gave me the confidence I needed to own and tell my story. Melissa provided truly the most candid / honest feedback I needed on every single word I put in my essays.
She mandated that I dig deeper, push myself harder, and brought out the absolute best in me - all while being an incredible mentor, friend, and support system.
In the end, I got into my #1 dream school: Darden. It was a stretch. We knew it was a stretch going in, but her unwavering confidence in me got me over the finish line. I learned that applying to business school takes a village, and I'm eternally grateful Melissa was part of my village.
Joined: Mar 11, 2019
Background - I am a Caucasian male working in Finance (wealth management) with a degree from a decent private school and a 710 GMAT score. Needless to say I come from a very over-represented group.
Like many people who ultimately chose to go with mbaMission, I chose the service for its excellent reviews and the abundant resources the service provides. I chose the 4-school package, and although I was nervous to spend that amount of money, I cannot stress how much it was worth it in the end. I chose to work with Melissa Blakeslee after doing the free 30 minute fit call, and I could not be happier with my experience with her. She is a former admissions director herself, so she knows exactly that the admissions teams look for. The essay writing process is daunting, and I know I would've second guessed myself or submitted a much weaker essay without Melissa's help. MbaMission guarantees responses within 48 hours, but most of the time Melissa would send me her reviews of my essays the next day. I always felt comfortable shooting her a quick email asking random questions, knowing she'd respond quickly.
The time spent working on the Brainstorming document and session was especially well-worth it. Melissa was able to pull details from it in order to help me think through how to write each of my essays, and I was amazed with how much she seemed to know about me in just a short period of time. She was patient, organized, and most importantly really cared about my success.
By the end of the process, I was accepted into a top 10 school with scholarship! I thought it would be difficult for someone with my background to get accepted into a top program, but I never even imagined I could get funding for it. The money spent up-front for the consulting service paid off multiple times over with my scholarship reward, and I know that I wouldn't have gotten it without Melissa's help.
I honestly can't recommend Melissa enough. Please do yourself a favor and work with her!
Joined: May 07, 2015
Applying to business school is a stressful and challenging process that requires a lot of commitment and reflection in order to have a successful outcome. I wanted to hire a consultant that would not only support my goals but also set realistic expectations throughout the process. After an introduction call with Melissa, I felt she was the perfect fit for me. I immediately felt I was talking to a close friend. There are not enough words to describe why deciding to work with Melissa has been one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life. Melissa was honest, responsive, supportive, and motivating every step of the way.
Melissa really excelled every step of the process. Here are some observations:
Brainstorming. This is the backbone of the application process. During this stage you have to self-reflect about every milestone in your life and write about them in a brainstorming document. Even though I drafted a very detailed brainstorming document, Melissa asked me multiple follow-up questions, genuinely showing her interest in getting to know me better and understand my story. Melissa was of great help to me when it came to decide which program to apply to – she even proposed me to apply to a program I thought it was a reach for me (this shows her interest in obtaining the best outcome for the applicant and not in improving her personal stats).
Essays. Melissa made the essay writing easy, efficient, and fun. I really appreciated how Melissa constantly pushed me to dig deeper into the details of my story. During this stage she was always fast at turning over reviewed essay drafts (much faster than the 48-hour stipulated turnaround). I liked that Melissa was forthcoming and honest when she felt an essay wasn’t strong enough or required a fresh start.
Interviews. Melissa and I had one-hour prep sessions before each interview. These sessions were extremely helpful as it gave me a lot of confidence and made me feel comfortable by the time I walked into the interviews. Melissa helped me prepare my answers in advance and taught me how to adapt my answers to specific questions.
You can’t go wrong with Melissa. She was largely responsible for my successful outcome. With Melissa’s guidance, I was admitted to Kellogg, Booth, and Fuqua.
Joined: Feb 25, 2018
REVIEWER IDENTITY VERIFIED by school email address [?]
I started looking for an admissions counselor in March for Round 1 deadlines in September. Of the six free consultations that I did with various admissions counselors, Melissa’s really stuck out in that she was extremely genuine, acknowledged both the strengths and weaknesses in my candidacy, and was very relatable. I also liked how Melissa had her MBA from Kellogg (one of my target schools) and had ad com experience. I hired Melissa in around May.
Even though the applications weren’t due until September, I am glad that I was able to start prepping with Melissa as soon as possible. Our initial meeting was over an hour reviewing my brainstorming document, where we came up with a variety of vignettes and themes that resonated throughout all of my essays. Melissa was also able to provide tremendous value in my resume; she helped me concisely describe the variety of roles and responsibilities that I’ve had throughout my career and the “so what” factor that would resonate with the ad com.
The biggest challenge in my candidacy was my test score. I switched from the GMAT to the GRE and took the GRE twice in June and July. When I told Melissa my score, she encouraged me to take the GRE one more time….with the only availability on the day before my first application was due in September! Luckily since all my applications were complete except for the test, I had the capacity to take the test and I finally crushed it!
Melissa was also very helpful with the interview prep – she helped me figure out other elements of my candidacy that I should talk about that weren’t addressed in my resume or essays.
Ultimately, I was accepted to all four schools that I applied to (Kellogg, Haas, Ross, Fuqua) with substantial scholarship money to all but one. Melissa had more faith in my candidacy than I had in myself….as we were prepping for interviews she said she thought I would have some tough decisions in a few months. Melissa also helped me with my tough decision…we talked through the strengths and weaknesses of each school for an hour and she helped me feel comfortable with my decision.
I couldn’t have done it without Melissa! She’s the best!
Joined: Nov 23, 2016
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Coming off a zero admit season I was desperately seeking good advice and counsel for my reapplication season. As part of my search, I reviewed the list of consultants on mbaMission website and decided to set up a 30 min complimentary call with Melissa. I was intrigued by her experience leading the admissions committee at an actual business school, and wanted to get her thoughts on my candidacy and approach.
While I decided to go with an Indian consultant for a school package due to budgetary constraints, I didn't want to miss out on Melissa's expertise and decided to go for hourly services with her.
I loved Melissa's direct but positive & encouraging approach to my questions, and while initially I was apprehensive about how the whole "hourly" service will work, I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of value I was able to derive from it. I used Melissa's expertise in fine-tuning my resume, reviewing essays for a couple of schools, getting answers to miscellaneous questions, and I finished it with a mock interview. For those who may be apprehensive about spending 4-5K to get such expert advice as a full package, I'd say the "hourly service" is a great way to not miss out on some very valuable support and guidance.
Melissa's feedback on essays and story structure was crucial (specially for Fuqua's 25 things) and she also suggested some super edits to resume bullets which were minor changes but greatly increased the impact of the bullets. The mock interview was also very helpful as we focused on pace and tone apart from the stories. I also sought her advice on things like interviewing with alum vs on campus and it was reassuring to make those decisions knowing that I was not doing it alone.
I had final offers from Chicago Booth, Kellogg & Duke Fuqua and I have no qualms in admitting that Melissa had a material effect in ensuring these great results.
Joined: Feb 21, 2019
Prepping for the GMAT and GRE (I took both) was an exhausting process. I've always been a solid student (GPA 3.8), but I kept missing the mark on these standardized tests. I wasn't very happy with my scores, and was thinking of applying round 3, to start school in fall 2018. Melissa was instrumental in my decision to wait, get the best scores I possibly could, not rush the essays, and apply round 1, in order to start school in fall 2019. I followed her advice and will be starting school in about 6 months at USC Marshall. Her honest assessment of my candidacy was so appreciated. I don't know if I would've made the cut had I applied in round 3 last year.
When it came to essays, I didn't know where to begin. Melissa really helped me hone my focus, and again, her honesty was greatly appreciated. One of my essays was so far away from where it needed to be that Melissa declined to give notes on it, and instead suggested that I start over with a different approach (she specified the approach). I was paying hourly, so I'm very grateful that she didn't waste time correcting an essay that was so poor to begin with.
Melissa is awesome in terms of communication, time management, and giving helpful, honest feedback. I would highly, HIGHLY recommend.