Pre-MBA industry: Financial Services/Technology
Years of experience at time of matriculation: 8
GMAT/GRE score: 334 (V: 164 Q: 170)
Undergraduate GPA: 2.7/4.0
Graduate GPA: 3.89/4.00
Admitted to: Wharton
Service Type: Premium
I worked with Square One for Round 2 applications during the 2021-2022 cycle. I interviewed ~6 firms and consultants. The prior year, I had worked with a reputable firm and thought that I did not receive the support and quality of work I was looking for, so I was careful to choose the right consultant. After my initial conversation with Kathryn (founder), I felt comfortable in the hands of Square One. During the conversation, I spoke about my background and why MBA. Kathryn listened to my story, having a candid response about my candidacy and story that felt personal and empowering. I felt other firms were heavily focused on marketing or were boastful, but I did not feel any of this with Kathryn.
The next step was to find the right advisor that I would work closely with. I interviewed several advisors before talking with Lara. I believe all the advisors I spoke with were strong, but I immediately connected with Lara during our initial discussion. Her authentic style made me feel highly confident and comfortable partnering with her for my business school applications.
The Square One process was structured to move things along but tailored in helping me access my motivations and key moments of my story. The process started with school selection, which measured the risk of school admittance. I was a high-risk candidate, given my <3.0 GPA. Then, there was a narrative process with Wendy (narrative expert) and Lara, where I met over multiple sessions to talk about my ambitions and form a business case of what it takes to reach those goals. I found this process invaluable as I was not interested in developing a case just for admission purposes.
Then, I began working on essays with Lara over a few months, a process that was highly introspective and therapeutic. Her pre-writing calls and comments on drafts were insightful and helped direct my writing to be full and personal. During the semi-final drafts, my essays were sent to a team of editors, which included Kathryn, to make sure that my stories were clear, understandable, and ready. My writing came out real, professional, and passionate. The team was kind enough to work with me through tight timelines, even turning around comments on the day of application deadlines.
At the interview stage, Lara spent significant time with me, helping me understand my unique touch in interviews. At this point, I realized I had approached interviews wrong my whole life, almost as a test, but she helped me come as my whole self and communicate my thoughts in a clear spoken and sincere way.
Overall, I was accepted to Wharton. I don’t think I could have had this successful outcome with any other group and am so happy I chose Lara and Square One.