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This topic has expert replies
Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts
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Hello all you lovely admissions consultants who are so beyond my reach!!

Please guide me on how to make the best use of limited resources...

I need active counseling with regards to school selection and the right approach to essays and what to put in recommendations etc.

However - I can't afford to pay 5-6K for consulting services! In my currency it's a lot of money (almost half a year's salary!) and I have to support a family.

So what do people like me do?

Are there any free resources available that I can use? I am confident of a good score, I have a good profile but I do have low GPA. Plus I'm an international applicant, applying to USA and Europe.

Where do I begin to look? please point me in the right direction!

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by Eliot » Mon Jul 13, 2009 10:02 am
moonshine,

Thanks for your note. Given your tight budget, I recommend that you begin by using the free resources available. For example, our blog (blog.clearadmit.com) and wiki (www.clearadmit.com/wiki) have lots of information on MBA admissions. You should also read threads in BW and BeatTheGmat to see the advice given to other applicants with a similar profile.

You can also post your stats to various admissions counselors and get some initial feedback.

We do offer MBA publications which can help you learn more about the top business schools and hone your admissions strategy for these programs: https://www.clearadmit.com/pub.html

Finally, we also offer an hourly service - so if you just want to chat on the phone for an hour or have us edit a few essays, this might be a cost effective option for you. Feel free to contact me if you are interested.

Sincerely,

Eliot Ingram
Clear Admit LLC
Last edited by Eliot on Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:28 am, edited 3 times in total.
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by Courtney » Mon Jul 13, 2009 10:07 am
I'm not an admissions consultant, but as an employee of a small nonprofit with a modest salary, I'm with you you moonshine. I would guess that consulting services are out of reach for many of us.

I am hopeful that by taking advantage of many of the MBA admissions books, as well as using school websites and blogs, MBA forums such as this one, and some of the admission consultant free services that are offered like webinars and 30 minute consults, I can cobble together an admissions strategy on my own that will be competitive against all of the other applicants who do use admissions consultants.

I applaud the work that Beat The GMAT is doing with Stacy Blackman Consulting in offering the Beat The GMAT Scholarship. It's a great opportunity for a few worthy individuals to receive high-quality admissions consulting at no cost to them. However, I wonder if any of the other admissions consultants ever consider doing pro bono consulting work for candidates with exceptional stories who would otherwise be unable to afford their services. There have to be some great candidates out there, and it could be a good publicity stunt for the consultant to help them get some good press and attract new, paying clients.

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by moonshine » Mon Jul 13, 2009 11:14 am
Thanks Eliot for sending me the links! It's a good start and I think it would help me greatly to speak to someone who can guide me on a strategy. I think it's best for me to do the ground work myself and then figure out if I need to approach a professional for specific problems.

Courtney I'm so glad to read your message! Thank you for writing - I hope to gather enough wisdom from the net to manage most of this on my own. If you know of any good links please do post them here.

Best regards!
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by VP_MBA_Guru » Thu Jul 16, 2009 6:10 am
Moonshine,
To piggyback on my other colleagues input, most top Admissions Consultants (including a shameless plug for mine - Veritas Prep!!!) offer free resources to help you think through the MBA Admissions Process.

In addition to those tools and boards like these, you should also consider an MBA Admissions book. Those who read my posts know I am a HUGE fan of these as a great intro into the Admissions process.

My faves are "How to Get Into A Top MBA Program" by Montauk and "MBA Game Plan" by Bouknight (full disclosure - MBA Game Plan is affiliated with Veritas Prep)

Regards,

N
Nikhil P. | Admissions Consultant | Veritas Prep

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by mbaMissionJessica » Thu Jul 16, 2009 8:38 am
I'll join the plug-my-firm theme!

At mbaMission, we offer a free 30-minute consultation. You can also download for free our guide to writing your personal statement, available here: https://www.mbamission.com/docs/mbamissi ... _guide.pdf

We also offer at a fairly low cost a Start to Finish Guide to your application, available in our store. (You can get it for free now if you sign up to follow us on Twitter and re-tweet us; see here: https://www.mbamission.com/blog/2009/07/ ... ish-guide/).
On our blog, we post essay analyses, writing tips and essay tips, and we're a presence on this and other boards.

Best of luck!
Jessica Shklar
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Sign up for a free consultation with mbaMission, the only admissions consulting firm that leading GMAT prep companies, ManhattanGMAT and Kaplan, recommend.
www.mbamission.com/consult.php

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by moonshine » Fri Jul 17, 2009 9:27 am
Thanks Jessica and Nikhil! It's great to have a starting point and this is why beatthegmat forum is absolutely stellar - for people like me this is a wonderful platform to meet helpful guides :)

I'm checking out both your posts. Many thanks again!

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by Linda Abraham » Fri Jul 17, 2009 1:29 pm
moonshine wrote:Hello all you lovely admissions consultants who are so beyond my reach!!

Please guide me on how to make the best use of limited resources...

I need active counseling with regards to school selection and the right approach to essays and what to put in recommendations etc.

However - I can't afford to pay 5-6K for consulting services! In my currency it's a lot of money (almost half a year's salary!) and I have to support a family.

So what do people like me do?

Are there any free resources available that I can use? I am confident of a good score, I have a good profile but I do have low GPA. Plus I'm an international applicant, applying to USA and Europe.

Where do I begin to look? please point me in the right direction!
Me too! Me too! :-)

I regularly advise applicants who can't afford our services to take advantage of the rich resources Accepted.com offers for free. In addition we sell information products at price points well below our admissions services and even those cost as little as $212.50 for one hour with our current early bird discount.

Here are a few free resources:

* MBA articles and Tips
* MBA email mini courses
* MBA admissions chats with admissions directors. Sign up for advance notice of events.
* MBA Interview Feedback Database
* B-School Zones -- School specific information:
* Accepted Admissions Almanac -- our blog.
*MBA Admissions Telethon -- Free mini consultation available next week.

Lower cost resources:

MBA Admissions Books Books and ebooks written by our staff and starting at $11.95.
Application evaluation

Hope this helps. Best,
Linda
Linda Abraham
Accepted.com -- Helping You Write Your Best!
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by moonshine » Mon Jul 20, 2009 4:30 am
Wow Linda! thank you so much :)
At least now I have a good starting point with all these resources!
Shall be contacting you shortly.
Moonshine

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by Paxton Helms - Kaplan » Mon Jul 20, 2009 8:50 am
I have heard --but not confirmed-- that it is possible to use student loan dollars to pay for admissions consulting.

Separately, I have posted a lot of rich information on choosing a business school and saving money when getting an MBA over at the Kaplan forum.

Take a look and let me know your thoughts--

Paxton Helms
Kaplan

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by Linda Abraham » Tue Jul 21, 2009 11:58 am
moonshine wrote:Wow Linda! thank you so much :)
At least now I have a good starting point with all these resources!
Shall be contacting you shortly.
Moonshine
You're most welcome. Look forward to hearing from you.

Linda
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by aim-wsc » Tue Aug 11, 2009 4:37 am
Paxton Helms - Kaplan wrote:I have heard --but not confirmed-- that it is possible to use student loan dollars to pay for admissions consulting.

Separately, I have posted a lot of rich information on choosing a business school and saving money when getting an MBA over at the Kaplan forum.

Take a look and let me know your thoughts--

Paxton Helms
Kaplan
If it's free & accessible to anyone (Kaplan forums), why not post a link here?

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by appmentor » Tue Aug 25, 2009 8:47 pm
Hi moonshine,

There are a couple other locations online where I know you can get some essay feedback for a very reasonable rate.

First, https://www.MBAvolunteers.org/ provides essay feedback and donates proceeds to charity.

Second, https://www.AppMentor.com is a website where you can choose a student accepted into a top program to provide essay feedback for your entire app for a very reasonable rate (I'm a Wharton student who is a mentor on AppMentor).

Both of these sites surely don't provide the end-to-end consulting service that many professional consultants provide, but they do provide options to obtain high-quality critical analysis on your essay drafts at a lower price point.
Corey
www.appmentor.com
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by Brett N » Tue Sep 01, 2009 8:27 am
I had a similar problem when I applied and that's why I started IvyAppSuccess to provide a cheaper service. We do all our work online so we can charge a bit less. If you want, you can contact me directly for more questions at brett@Ivyappsuccess.com.

If you can't afford any service, my second recommendation would be to tap into your network and just pay for things you really need. When I applied, I got friends to help me who had either gotten accepted into an MBA program or had worked in admissions. But I really needed full professional help in essays so I paid a friend of a friend to edit my essays - and now she works with me - so I ended up spending $300 on my applications and got accepted into my top choice.
Please free to contact me at Brett@IvyAppSuccess.com or through our
profile evaluation form.

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by essaysnark » Sat Sep 26, 2009 10:35 am
EssaySnark invites Brave Supplicants to submit their bschool essays for extensive (free) critique, to be posted online for the world to see.

https://essaysnark.blogspot.com

Identifying information is removed from essays before posting. One essay per Brave Supplicant. No guarantees all submissions will be critiqued. Please send good essays (do not make EssaySnark cry -- yes it has happened).