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Columbia Business School

Columbia Business School

As someone who has been brought up in a traditional environment, going to college was a great experience which allowed me to develop an entrepreneurial spirit. After my undergraduate degree, I planned to start an e-commerce platform to sell groceries but had several troubles along the way, including a lack of market research and competitor awareness. This led us to shift to the B2B market, where we provided groceries to restaurants and were relatively successful. However, this experience drove me to pursue a formal business education, since I realised a strong industry network and quality work experience is important for an entrepreneur. Since I come from an unconventional background, several people suggested against applying to top business schools in the US, but I was determined to share my story with the best in the world. The team-based approach, as well as my elder brother’s admission to an M7 business with The Red Pen, was why I chose to work with them. From building an impressive resume and self-reflecting for essays to identifying the right people for recommendations and preparing for interviews, I worked with experts from The Red Pen team and was able to present a strong case to the admission committee. Finally, I got into Columbia Business School, which was my first choice, and received two scholarships from the school that cover over 85% of my tuition fee. I cannot thank the team enough for being extremely supportive and patient and for helping me present my story well.

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The fundamental role of independent educational consultants is to help students explore college opportunities and find the right place for them to succeed academically and socially. IECs don’t get students admitted—they help students demonstrate why they deserve to be admitted at appropriately chosen schools. They help students find colleges they might not have heard of—often out of their region—and they help students put their best foot forward.

Here are 5 things families should consider when looking to hire an IEC:

  1. Does the IEC belong to a professional association such as IECA with established and rigorous standards for membership?
  2. Do not trust any offers of guaranteed admission to a school or a certain minimum dollar value in scholarships.
  3. Ensure that the IEC adheres to the ethical guidelines for private counseling established by IECA.
  4. Find an IEC that visits college, school, and program campuses and meets with admissions representatives regularly in order to keep up with new trends, academic changes and evolving campus cultures.
  5. Do they attend professional conferences or training workshops on a regular basis to keep up with regional and national trends and changes in the law?