I was a non-traditional applicant with a liberal arts major from an Ivy and work experience in startups. I’m a female Asian-American. The weaknesses I knew I had to overcome were a sub-3.5 GPA, lack of quantitative background, and scattered work history due to the nature of the startup world.
As I searched for a consultant, the first mistake I made in the application process was seeking a consultant with a high “success rate.” After all, my ultimate goal wasn’t to write a bunch of essays; it was to be admitted to my dream school! When I spoke to Jessica, she made me realize that the firms that boast about their numbers push applicants towards safety schools in the interest of keeping their numbers high. She politely explained that her own success rate included having countless clients who felt as though they were her only client, glowing testimonials, and half of her business from referrals. The fact that her own incentives were in line with mine, not agai nst them, was a refreshing break from other consultants - many of which told me straight up that I had no chance at my dream schools, so I shouldn’t even try.
When I asked Jessica about my weaknesses, she was nothing but positive. Unlike other consultants, who continued to harp on the fact that it would be difficult to overcome the GPA and work history, Jessica instead focused on my upward trend in grades and how fascinating the work I did in each of my jobs was. She encouraged me to apply to my dream schools. I could feel her genuine excitement upon hearing my story. This is what sold me.
Our first brainstorming session was unforgettable. I’d prepared a 22-page document full of answers to questions about my upbringing, work history, and personal values - not just my numbers and resume points. Jessica read every single page in order to touch upon the most poignant details about my life in our conversation. She eventually drew so much “content” out of me (that I didn’t even know I had!) that we were able to come up with an outline for a very personal story.
This story ended up forming the foundation of our relationship. For three months, I’d lock myself in my room to finish a draft, send them to Jessica, anxiously wait for her response, open her document full of thoughtful and honest edits that matched my own effort, and repeat. I was shocked by how far every draft progressed. In just 6 drafts, my essay went from scattered to polished. I’m confident I couldn’t find another person that puts as much care into her review as Jessica does, especially considering how personal the story was to me.
In the end, I used the final essay as my main introduction for 5 out of 6 applications to Top 10 schools. I secured 3 interviews, was accepted to all 3 with Jessica’s help (2 with scholarship), and I’m now at Wharton - a dream!
Before I had secured any interviews, I told Jessica that no matter the outcome, she had helpe d me be more introspective about myself than ever before. The story she helped me write helped me come to terms with something I hadn’t had the courage to face. If you work with Jessica, you’ll be getting so much more than an acceptance letter to business school.
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