Status: First-time applicant
Pre-MBA industry: Finance Analysis
Years of experience at time of matriculation: 5
GMAT/GRE score: 620
Undergraduate GPA: 2.18/4.00
Admitted to: Columbia
Coming into the MBA application process, I wasn’t quite sure how to attack my apps. Nevertheless, if there was one thing I knew, it was that I wanted to go to NYU Stern. During my free exploration call with Square One, I talked only about attending Stern and planned only to use Square One for my Stern application. During the very same call, my consultant energized me about the overall process and implored me to be more active in my search. Her positive outlook and honesty helped me become extremely self-aware of my strengths but most importantly made it very clear that my weaknesses could be mitigated. This was the most important realization for me during the application process. Aware that I wanted to stay in the New York area, she urged me to trust her and consider Columbia Business School. I agreed to do some research after some arm-twisting. About four days of research and a class visit later, I absolutely fell in love with CBS and it became my first choice!
I cannot overplay how instrumental Square One was throughout my process. They instilled confidence in me when I was unsure, and answered questions when I needed direction, 24/7. Also important to me, they ALWAYS offered unbiased constructive criticism. A perfect example of this, my “scared straight” MBA edition mock interview. Four days before my interview with Columbia, my consultant conducted my mock. At the conclusion, she politely stated that given my interview performance I would have 100% been dinged. That statement by itself would have been devastating. However, she followed up by providing me with examples of each one of my interview weaknesses, how I could improve those weaknesses and suggested effective practice methods. Two days after my official interview, I received my acceptance to Columbia! It ended up being the only school I applied to!
For me, Square One was a perfect pairing, and I’d highly recommend them to all colleagues, friends and family.