|All Reviews > Square One Prep Reviews|
Joined: Apr 22, 2019
If you’re considering Square One, do it without hesitation! This is absolutely the best investment you can make in yourself and the process of getting into the business school of your dreams!
Let me start by sharing that the Square One team believe in me starting the second I had my introductory call with Kathryn. As a self proclaimed over achiever, I was disappointed with my test score and was told by other MBA consulting firms that I had no chance of getting into a top ten, let alone top twenty business school. Well I proved them wrong! Ultimately, I was accepted into several top ten and top twenty programs. I cried tears of joy when I was admitted to Wharton (the #1 business school in the world) with fellowship money!
I owe much of my success to Kathryn and my advisor, Lara. Lara was my rock throughout the application process, she served as my coach, mentor, friend, and therapist. She pushed me to believe in myself as we worked together to identify my unique brand. During this entire period both Lara and Kathryn were there every step of the way, providing thoughtful feedback and getting back to me EXTREMELY quickly so we could meet deadlines. Their advice and structured process was key to ensuring I had a unique and compelling application.
Joined: Apr 07, 2019
760 Q50 V42
Victor, Kathryn, and Wendy were extremely helpful during my application process. As an international applicant coming from finance, I knew defining my career vision and building the essays would be the most difficult parts of the application. I was a little skeptical about MBA consulting at first because I thought no one could know me better than myself. But Square One's service really far exceeded my expectation. My Square One team used their expertise to help me brainstorm ideas into a distinct, thoughtful career plan and polish the essays to perfection. With their help, I was able to conduct some deep soul searching and at the end, I felt I knew better about myself. Very happy with the comprehensive package.
Joined: Apr 13, 2019
Using a consultant last year and not getting into any schools was discouraging. I knew I was working with a low test score and thought it was the main reason for not getting in anywhere. I needed to hear feedback from an expert on what went wrong. After being referred to Square One by a friend and hearing about her experience, I was intrigued. I set up time for an initial consultation. Right away, my strengths and weaknesses in my last applications were identified. The brutal honesty surely helped. I discovered that it wasn’t just my test score that needed work, it was my essays. After hearing about the many ways to improve my applications and have a real shot for the next application round, I decided to go with Square One.
Along with Square One helping me identify areas of improvement in my applications, the team also guided me on how to show that my story was special. Square One takes a structured approach that makes application organization easy. The one-on-one guidance and customization made me realize that Square One is the best in the game. After the entire process was complete, I learned more about myself and was extremely proud of presenting my narrative to admissions committees.
Square One was instrumental in encouraging me to push forward in times of doubt. Thanks to Square One, I’ve gotten into my dream school.
I highly recommend Square One!
Joined: Jan 24, 2018
Square One did an excellent job in framing each stage of the application process and laying out the marching orders. They were thorough, responsive, and great in helping to paint my story in the best light!
I found that outlining my career narrative with Square One saved me significant time in writing essays and presenting my application holistically. They were also excellent in helping me narrow the content of my essays to fit the specs while maintaining the essential content.
They also did a good job in helping me navigate the waitlist process for one of my top schools, where I ultimately got accepted and matriculated.
Overall, I'd recommend Square One if you are looking for a service to help keep you on track throughout the application process without feeling overwhelmed or stressed.
Joined: Apr 09, 2019
Teresa and Kathryn provided the resources and feedback that I needed in order to clearly understand what I was bringing to the table as an applicant. They provided samples and specific ways to add gravitas to each point on my resume. Even working hourly, I felt Square One wanted to get to know me and wanted me to succeed. Square One was fundamental in helping to bring a focus to my application that resulted in a fantastic scholarship that I am proud to accept. They followed up with me throughout the admissions process and provided support each step of the way.
Joined: Dec 11, 2016
740 Q48 V44
Kathryn and her team were a tremendous help throughout the entire application process, and they made the application process as smooth and pain free as possible. After shopping around a few different admissions consultancies, I decided to go with Square One because of Kathryn's brutal honesty and willingness to spend more time with me on that initial consultation. I knew quickly after signing up that I was in good hands. My dedicated consultant kept me on track and kept me motivated throughout the entire process. I highly recommend the full school package, as that covers everything from crafting your initial story to interview prep. After getting into a few of my top choices and receiving generous scholarships, I knew that Square One paid for itself. If you're on the fence about using a consultancy or in deciding which service to choose, I encourage you to go with Square One.
Joined: Oct 23, 2017
Kathryn was highly recommended to me by my brother and his network. I did a free consultation call with Kathryn and there itself I had made up my mind that I would work with her to prepare my applications as she showed an amazing ability to understand me, my background and my motivation in that short call. She showed high confidence in my candidacy and that was very important to me, given the track record of Square One Prep's clients' acceptance rate.
Through the applications process, Kathryn was prompt, extremely thoughtful and helped me put my best foot forward. I broadly knew what I wanted to put in my applications and what were my motivations to apply to B-Schools, but Kathryn helped me getting the essence out so beautifully, coherently and honestly that there were moments in the otherwise anxiety-inducing process of applications that I ended up cherishing. Later, having mock-interview with her helped me in boosting my confidence for the real interviews.
Additionally, Kathryn had asked me to give GMAT and get it out of my way as soon as possible. I heard her, but due to various reasons and some faults of my own, I did not give my GMAT for a very long time. In hindsight, I realize that that was the most valuable piece of advice, and she had given it to me for no cost during my free consultation call. Had I had worked on the advice, it would have saved me a lot of energy and would have prevented me from putting myself in tight timelines while also hopping through jobs during the gruelling process of applications. Kathryn was patient and put up with my short timelines cordially. To be respectful of her time and providing her a good window period to help you out, I would suggest candidates try their best to work ahead of the deadlines.
I had started working with Kathryn on a very low budget and had asked her for focussed help to be able to afford her support. Eventually, I applied to more schools than I had thought of (purely my decision, with no coaxing/pressure from Kathryn), and ended up asking for more of Kathryn's time. It did inflate my budget, but since I could see the value she was bringing in, I believed in my instincts and went ahead. In retrospect, that was the best decision ever as it helped me fetch a HUGE scholarship, in addition to getting me into my dream school, Stanford GSB! There was no way this could have been a possibility without Kathryn's support, cheering and confidence in my candidacy.
Joined: Apr 05, 2019
When I first began the business school process, I truly didn’t know where to begin. I only knew I had an ambitious goal for myself: get into a top 5 MBA program. The application process itself is extremely overwhelming, and adding 5 schools into the mix becomes an even more daunting task. Thankfully, I had Kathryn to take me through every step of the way. I can honestly say I would not have been able to do this without her.
From the very beginning, Kathryn pushed me to think critically about my desire to receive an MBA. In our introductory call, we mapped out my career goals in a way that aligned with my interests. It felt like a real conversation, and I will use her advice to me when thinking about my career even beyond the MBA/application process.
While I consider myself a qualified applicant, like many who go through the MBA process I began to doubt that I had characteristics unique enough about me to be accepted into a top program. Coupled with my below average GMAT score (680) for all the schools I was applying to, I nearly considered giving up on the whole idea of applying a few times. I’m so thankful Kathryn was there to push me out of my own head, help me realize my value, and portray it in a meaningful and powerful way to the admissions committees.
In addition, Kathryn’s robust schedule for working together kept me on task and productive as I made my way through 5 applications. She has a truly brilliant system that allows you to craft the best possible story while maintaining true to yourself. By the end of working together, in addition to now having a whole portfolio of essays and a new resume completed, I also felt like I had a practical career journey that I was interested in pursuing long term.
Above all else, Kathryn always made herself available to me as I needed. Her email replies usually took less than 60 seconds, and her reviews of my material had a quick turnaround but were extremely thorough.
Thanks to Kathryn, I can proudly say I received interviews at 4 out of the top 5 programs I applied to, and was formally admitted to 3. Thanks so much to Square one for everything - you really helped my dreams come true!
Joined: Mar 26, 2018
710 Q48 V40
While I dreamed about pursuing an MBA in a US university, I was aware that, with only 16 months of work experience at the time of the applications and 22 months upon enrollment, my chances of landing a place on a top-tier business school were low.
Although aware of my problem, I was still extremely skeptic about paying to admissions consultants to help me prepare my MBA applications – thinking I could easily do everything by myself -, until one friend told me to visit www.squareoneprep.com and have a 30-min call with Kathryn.
After my call with Kathryn (who gladly gave me 1 free hour instead of the classic 30 minutes), I immediately decided I was going to hire SquareOne Prep: extremely high-achiever, pragmatic and results-oriented consultants made my choice easy.
As I sit writing this testimonial and think about the journey I embarked on with Lara Avsar (in the end having been accepted by Stern and Darden), I can now gladly tell myself that going with SquareOne Prep was the best choice I made. Lara (and the rest of the team) besides intelligent and creative, was what you need in a consultant: extremely available. I always felt that Lara (and the team) was always there for me. I knew I could email Lara with every dilemma I had (regardless of its relevance) and I would get a reply from her with great advice. (in fact, I just wrote an email to Lara yesterday about a topic other than MBA applications and I got an awesome reply!).
If you, like me at the beginning, still think that hiring consultants is not worth it or that Square One is too pricey, I challenge you to hop in a call with Kathryn and, as you talk to her, see with your own eyes how good these guys are. Their work does wonders, and I recommend them to anyone who wants to pursue an MBA: SquareOne Prep is an advantage you want to have when competing with the thousands of MBA applicants every year.
(side note: I got a scholarship at Darden that itself paid for the services I hired SquareOne Prep for).
Joined: Apr 01, 2019
Yes, it’s expensive.
Yes, it’s worth it.
From the onset of my application process, I knew I wanted guidance to ensure I was putting my best foot forward. Compared to other services, Square One immediately stood out because of their unique process. From my consultant, Jason, who was always available to answer every and any question, to Kathryn, whose oversight is truly invaluable, to the other team members - at Square One you get an entire group of people who provide their experience-based input.
My entire team at Square One really challenged me to dive into my narrative, my goals, and my ability to convey them. They also provided a myriad of resources and tools along the way. There were times when the process was not fun, but it’s absolutely what I needed to ensure I was putting in the effort needed to build a strong application. By the time I hit submit, I knew the applications were the strongest and most authentic they could be. However, even after hitting ‘submit’, Square One stayed in touch and even helped me navigate the waitlist process at a school (which did convert to an offer!). This prep has not only gotten me into my dream schools (with $$), but it has also given me a strong base for confidently presenting myself going forward.
The outcome and level of attention I received far exceeded expectations and I absolutely recommend using Square One Prep!