have been where you are now - square one with the application process for
business school. We know this juncture is critical to you and can help you just
as we've helped hundreds of other MBA applicants since 2009. Our approach is
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It was a wonderful experience working with Kathryn. I had my mock interview 4 days before my final one. Kathryn asked me relevant questions and guided me how to answer them effectively. What was remarkable was the fact that Kathryn understood my profile well and made sure my answers were customized accordingly.
This was my fourth collaboration with Kathryn and amongst the various other important reasons for me to keep going back to her, one key reason was that Kathryn immensely cared about me. She went beyond the professional requirements to help me and understand my profile. She was dedicated to my success all throughout. She consistently spent more time with me than what I had paid for to ensure my success.
The experience was very helpful as it prepared me well for the interview and boosted my confidence. I would any day recommend Square One for your MBA prep.
Knowing I had to overcome a low GPA, I started researching consultants to help strengthen my application. I called over 10 different companies and was wary about committing before I spoke to Kathryn at Square One Prep. I was instantly impressed. I had a list of target schools (rank 12-20), and on the introductory call with Kathryn she immediately looked over my profile and asked what I was thinking not applying to schools in the M7. I honestly thought I wouldn’t be competitive at those tiers of programs, but Kathryn convinced me to aim higher.
Fast forward to December 12th and a phone call from Kellogg offering me admittance, with a scholarship, to their MMM program, and I couldn’t be happier with my choice to work with Kathryn and her team! Still waiting to hear back from other schools, but I was also invited to interview at another one of my top picks.
Kathryn, Bailey, and my personal advisor Teresa, worked with me every step of the way and answered a million questions and concerns I had throughout the process, and helped me hit deadlines I would never had hit without their help given my work and travel schedule. With their guidance, I wrote and finalized an essay the day before the Kellogg submission deadline. While I didn’t use them for every school I applied for, I was able to leverage the materials for other schools, confident in the stories and information they helped me to craft.
Overall, I was really impressed with SOP and would recommend them to anyone who is unsure about the process. Was it expensive? Yes, but I worked it into my budget, and the return of being admitted to an M7 program with scholarship is a no brainer. Would I do it again? Without hesitation. Thanks so much to my SOP team!
I’m so glad I had support from SquareOne. Even during the free consultation, Kathryn spent hours to learn about my background, provided honest feedback and discussed her approach on how she would present my package. I knew instantly I didn’t have to shop around.
I chose Crystal as my consultant. As a Wharton graduate, she was able to share valuable insights on how to present my personal achievements and career narratives in the package. It was an overwhelming experience when I was constantly challenged and pushed to open myself up and show the authenticity in the essays, but that’s what adcom appreciates and made your application stand out in front of the committee. Have fun with it!
I didn’t have a great gmat score to show for, but I got interviews from all of the 3 M7 schools that I applied to. I still remember the night before my first interview, I had mock interview with Crystal for hours till mid-night. After I was waitlisted from one of the M7, SO team worked their magic again. They have a structured strategy to help you get off the wait list. And I did!
With years’ experience, SquareOne has a comprehensive structure to guide you through varies steps including school picking, narrative building, interview prepping and managing waitlist situation. I can’t appreciate enough of what SO has done for me. I would highly recommend Kathryn, Crystal, and the whole SO team to anyone looking to work with an admissions consultant.
I chose Kathryn from a number of different potential options because of her philosophy, focusing on bringing out an individual's personality. Over the course of just a few conversations she got to the root of who I am as a person, my motivations and goals, and made me realise things I didn't even know myself. I valued her insight and analysis as well as her candour, making very clear her view on any particular issue and what would be the best way to proceed, drawing on her extensive and unrivaled body of experience.
I went being rejected without interview from four schools to applying to the same four schools with two offers, including one scholarship. Kathryn was absolutely instrumental in this.
Because I was applying to only two M7 schools for geographical reasons, getting genuine and tailored advice on my applications was a must. When I first spoke with Kathryn during our initial free consultation, she stood out above all others due to her authenticity, frankness, and approach. Our conversation lasted over one hour during which she answered every question I asked her. Her responses showed that she thought intently about my profile before even hopping on that initial phone call; I knew I was not going to get a run-of-the-mill experience with SO.
I chose to work with Eva for both schools, who provided amazing insight into what adcoms are looking for, how to best get across my accomplishments on paper, and most importantly, how to craft a succinct and logical career narrative. Looking back at the ideas I had about what a great b-school application looked like before working with Eva, I would have crafted a fairly trite application. Eva and the SO team helped me focus on the elements of my personal and professional history that would attract an adcom’s attention.
I got the sense that other admissions consultants were looking to feed me narratives that worked for their other clients; SO will not do this. I think this is what made them stand out initially and the reason that the application package I submitted felt very personal and introspective. Their process forced you to dig deeper to get across the person you actual are rather than the archetypal MBA candidate. There are not any shortcuts to getting this across to the adcom, but you can be assured that SO will let you know when you are coming across unauthentic or trying to emulate what you think is the “right” thing to say in an essay. For me, their feedback on my ideas was the most rewarding process and invaluable.
SO was there with me through every step of this, and I felt comfortable knowing I had them in my corner for the big decisions (essay topics) down to the most minute of details (grammar). I would highly recommend Kathryn, Eva, and the whole SO team to anyone looking to work with an admissions consultant.
When I got my first interview invite, I realized that I had no idea how to prepare for MBA interviews and only a few weeks to figure it out. I heard about Square One Prep through a co-worker and was so impressed that Kathryn gave me a phone consultation the very first day I reached out. I liked that Square One was willing to spend as much or as little time with me as I wanted until I felt confident in my interview skills. The feedback I got from the mock interview was so insightful. I do not think any of my friends or family members could have given me the caliber of advice I received. Square One helped me navigate four interviews in a month and come out with no rejections, including, most importantly, an acceptance from my top choice school.
The MBA journey was a tough one for me. After an unsuccessful attempt last year (I applied 4 schools with no interviews), I decided to work with Kathryn for a second attempt. Not only did Kathryn work tirelessly with me to put together the best materials possible, I felt like she was genuinely invested in my success.
Given that MBA applications are time consuming and extremely introspective, it's important to work with an adviser who brings both compassion and advanced expertise to the process.
Thanks to Kathryn's help, I secured interviews at all 5 schools I applied to, with acceptances from Columbia, Ross (full scholarship) and Fuqua (70% scholarship). This outcome exceeded my expectations, and I cannot thank Kathryn and SOP for making it a reality!
Applying to business school is a stressful and involved process, which can easily take up months of your time if you don’t have the right guidance. I could not be more glad about choosing to work with Kathryn, who not only made much easier and less-stressful, but also constantly pushed me to achieve the best version of the story I wanted to tell.
I can bucket the advantages of working with Kathryn into two parts - one, process and two, content development. On the first, Kathryn had broken my application journey into a series of concrete and achievable goals, taking me through various elements of Resume, Career Narrative, Essays, App, LoRs and Interview prep in a manner that it never got too stressful or out of control. I also had the comfort her always being prompt and easy to reach for advice and turn-arounds, while she dealt very patiently with my one-too-many versions of essays!
On content development, Kathryn contributed meaningfully to helping me shape my story. While she helped me structure my thoughts and delve deeper into my experiences, she was also open to my pushing back on things I felt strongly about. The end result was that my final essays were truly, honestly, a reflection of me, and I couldn’t be happier with what we submitted.
I am admitted into two of my top schools, and I have Kathryn and SquareOnePrep to thank for that! I highly recommend working with Kathryn to any aspiring business school applicant!
TLDR: Interviewed 5 admissions consultants. All of them (including square one prep) told me to focus on top 20 schools vs top 10. Ended up getting into MIT Sloan with Collin/Kathryn's help. (Out of applying to Sloan, Wharton, and HBS with them)
They were amazing to work with in many ways. Here are the ones that stood out the most:
1. The mix of working with the leadership team and my consultant worked out really well. The leadership team had the background of helping others through hundreds of applications, and my consultant was exceptionally well informed of my chosen industry.
2. Career Narrative discussion- Meet with your consultant, Kathryn, and the career guide to determine how to make your career path reasonable and easy to follow. They don't hold back any punches, neither should you expect them to.
3. Dedicated staff to keep everyone on task. Square One Prep never missed a deadline and also held me accountable. The chief of staff is very detail oriented.
Collin's knowledge of my industry was extremely helpful. He could understand my background better than any other consultant that I talked to, and it clearly showed when we started working on the essays.
At first, I was really nervous about applying to a top MBA program as I had scored a good portion lower than the average GMAT scores at the programs I was considering. I also felt that writing was not my strong-suit as I hadn’t written an essay in over 6 years.
I reached out to several firms, but none of them came across as engaging and as frank as Kathryn. With Kathryn, she took her time (our first call went over by an hour!) to understand my story, my goals, and to read through my resume etc. She then made it clear that she believed that I have a solid shot at making it to my dream programs. I was absolutely relieved to hear that, given that Kathryn based her opinion on a much better understanding of who I was (compared to the other consultants I had called).
Kathryn then put me in touch with Kathleen, an awesome consultant experienced at helping people get accepted to dream schools. The process was tough, with many repeated drafts and blunt comments that hurt to hear (but were absolutely needed). It was actually at the peak of my frustration that everything clicked and my story and essays turned into their much improved near-final form. Through these frustrations, Kathleen was my rock; she kept me steady, re-assured me, and offered me advice all throughout. It meant so much to me that she was one text, email or call away at any point.
If you want honesty and hence a real shot of putting your best foot forward, but also the emotional support to navigate the frustrating application process, seriously look no further! Ultimately, I got into HBS, GSB, Sloan, and Haas! It’s a dream come true, and I can’t end this without a big thank you to Kathryn, Kathleen, and the team at S1P!
P.S. My final essays truly feel like a finished/perfected product, and I'm sure I would look back on them with much pride even years later.