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Graduate: 8 Years
Undergraduate: 8 Years
Wharton at University of Pennsylvania
Brand Management and Development
Bank of America
Net Promoter Score: 10
Rachel has a bachelor of arts in government from Harvard College and an MBA from UPenn Wharton. While building her financial services career in product management, product marketing, and strategy at several Fortune 50 companies, she discovered that she particularly enjoyed mentoring her colleagues. During this time, she became — and still is — a Harvard College alumni interviewer. She also served as an alumni interviewer for Wharton, which gave her firsthand exposure to how increasingly large and competitive the MBA applicant pools were becoming. As a former rower for Harvard’s Radcliffe Crew, Rachel knows that teamwork can be a crucial factor in one’s success. With that in mind, she pivoted away from interviewing MBA aspirants in favor of partnering with them on developing their applications. She loves building relationships with her clients, learning about their goals and motivations, and helping them increase their odds.
Rachel splits her time between Boston and the Cotswolds in England, while coaching applicants all over the world.
Gatehouse Admissions was founded on a simple truth: getting accepted to Harvard, Stanford, and other top-tier business schools becomes more challenging each year. Candidates need a new level of expertise and commitment from their admissions consultant. Through our unmatched 360° perspective based on thousands of acceptances and deep investment at every stage of the application process, Gatehouse Admissions is the new standard in admissions consulting.
We limit our client roster to a small number of high-caliber candidates who are targeting the most prestigious business schools. We specialize in those applying from ultra-competitive fields and companies (Private Equity, Venture Capital, Finance, Management Consulting, and Big Tech), though our tools are equally effective for our clients in Marketing, Manufacturing, Product Management, Family Businesses, and Entrepreneurship. Even within these motivated applicant pools, Gatehouse Admissions is not for everyone. The strongest partnerships are those in which each participant contributes equally. We seek clients who are committed to working hard, open to feedback, and willing to learn.
The best way to see if Gatehouse Admissions is a good fit for you is to visit our website and fill out an inquiry form. If we feel that your profile would be a good match with our services, we will contact you to schedule a free 30-minute initial consultation.
Our selection of services is all-encompassing:
– In-depth exploration of your experiences, values, and ambitions via our Experience Inventory so that you choose the best stories and themes to showcase in your application
– Unlimited line editing, coaching and an expert’s perspective on your essays, resume, short answers, and other application components. Your work is only done when both you and your consultant feel it is
– Partnership on your letters of recommendation, working with both you and your recommenders on strategy and execution to ensure help you shine
– Interview training and coaching, with multiple mock interviews. Based on our experience, one mock interview is never enough
– A project manager, sounding board, advocate, mentor, and most of all, an expert to guide you at every step of the way
Prices depend on what services you select, which schools you target, and how many you target in total.
10=Without Hesitation, 1=I would advise against it.
Select "N/A" if you are a career coaching client only.
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Background: White male of Latin American descent. Worked for PE/HF/VC for two years and Investment Banking prior to that. Non-target undergraduate with above average GPA. Recently admitted to HBS!
It initially took me a while to appreciate the value of an MBA. I was skeptical and spent a long-time soliciting feedback and different points of view to ensure this was the right next step in my career. After coming to the realization, I was slightly behind in my application process and timeline for round 1.
Rachel was incredibly helpful from day-1 distilling each of the key components of a well-rounded application. As someone with a type-A personality, Rachel did a great job creating structure to each component of the application process and pushing timelines to hold me accountable throughout. While busy with work, this demystified the application process and allowed me to dual-track applications with GMAT test preparation in a short timeline.
Rachel was also a great thought partner as I evaluated the course of my applications. Rachel helped me prioritize applications and shared valuable perspective on how to structure my submissions (round 1 vs. 2) based on the strengths and weaknesses of my application relative to each school’s focal areas.
Most importantly – Rachel clearly wanted what was best for me and always gave honest feedback. I am happy to have had the opportunity to work with her, and don’t believe I would have achieved the same outcome without her support. Highly recommend you put your faith in her as well!
Rachel was excellent! My situation was quite unique, I had a very limited timeframe to apply and it was for Round 3. Nevertheless Rachel was action focused and didn’t take her foot off of the accelerator. The entire way she was there to support me, I was impressed by her ability to help me tell my story so concisely. I was also quite impressed with Rachel after applications were done, she continued to check in to see how I was doing and offered her help.
Some background on me, I am in the Automotive industry, had a 3.95 GPA from my undergrad in engineering but am not the strongest standardized test taker. Even so, with Rachel’s help I was able to gain admittance into Ross and Sloan. I am beyond thrilled with the results!
Rachel was instrumental in getting me through a tough Round 3 Application Process. Due to late notice of receiving sponsorship (mid-January), I only had a few months to complete school research, GRE/GMAT prep and tests, essays, resume update, and recommender prep. Her method of understanding your unique background in order to help you shape your application and story is unbeatable. The MBA application process is hard, and it 100% helps to have an unbiased and unfiltered reader give you their feedback and help you iterate on your applications. I was ultimately admitted to Ross and Kellogg, and Rachel without a doubt helped me refine my first draft applications.
I’ve planned to get an MBA since I graduated from undergrad in 2015. With good grades/extracurriculars at an Ivy, 740 GMAT score, and 5 years of total WE across banking & VC (some spent internationally), I felt confident in my candidacy and the applications I prepared for the 2020 admissions cycle. PS – additional background: straight white male, 29 years old.
What I didn’t realize until I was outright rejected from H/S/W in 2020 [no consultation help] and then again by Wharton/CBS in 2022 [used a 3rd party essay revision service], was that a “good” application is not enough. The application has to be exceptional, meaning all aspects of who you are and what you have done shine through in the clearest, most compelling light.
In 2023, I decided to go all out, in what I decided would be my last attempt at applying to FT MBA programs. With Rachel [end-to-end application consultant], not only did I get interviews at every school I applied (Wharton included), I was accepted with scholarship to CBS, Yale, NYU, Tuck, and Darden!!
I echo all comments in other reviews that touch on Rachel’s work style, particularly her earnestness, patience, and reliability. And of course, her expert knowledge of what makes for a good app. Rachel draws the most out of you at both a high-level (key stories and concepts to draw from) and low-level (editing for concision and clarity).
If you want to give yourself the best shot of getting into your dream school, do not wait for your 3rd try to work with Rachel like I did, do it on your 1st. And start working with her soon, because MBA applications are a hefty burden that requires brain, time, and emotional expenditure that’s best spread out over a 3+ month time horizon. The peace of mind, results, and stakes make working with Rachel one of the best investments you’ll ever make.
Background: Asian/white male, worked for new HF/PE/VC fund for four years (straight out of college), 3.9 GPA at Harvard/Yale/Princeton undergrad, 770 GMAT. Result: Admitted to HBS.
While I was initially skeptical of the value of working with a consultant, I am so glad I ended up working with Gatehouse and Rachel specifically. Rachel got to know my story, work experience, and extracurricular involvement in detail and we worked together to create a cohesive application that resulted in receiving interviews at both HBS and GSB (and an acceptance to HBS). Throughout the process, there were numerous times when I sent essay drafts I thought were pretty decent but once I got Rachel’s feedback, I realized that they actually needed a bunch of work. Rachel’s suggestions were immensely helpful and pointed out things that I never would have even thought to consider. While some of these changes were tactical (e.g., fitting into word counts), many of them were also in the spirit of conveying a better overall story/narrative, which she was able to do because she put in a lot of work in getting to know me upfront. While the bulk of our work together was on the core essays, Rachel was helpful every step of the way of the application process, including incremental written materials (e.g., HBS Further Consideration Update) and the interview process.
If you’re considering working with a consultant, I would wholeheartedly recommend Rachel and the Gatehouse team!
When I began the MBA application process, I was a bit overwhelmed and unsure of my target schools. Since I had not taken the GMAT and had untraditional work experience, I also did not know what was realistic. After connecting with Gatehouse through a friend, I had fit chats with different consultants and began working with Rachel in early spring for R1 applications the coming fall.
From Day 1, Rachel was highly attentive, inquisitive, and authentic. I quickly knew I liked her forthright and thoughtful approach. She had an answer for all my questions and provided a plan of attack right away with clear guidance on how best to allocate my hours throughout the process.
I graduated from a top state school where I majored in finance (3.53 GPA), and I worked in roles at tech start-ups thereafter. Rachel had a transparent perspective on school selection and patiently pushed me to find the best school fit for me while keeping the process grounded in reality. After scoring a 730, I clearly knew what school I wanted to attend, a decision that was made easily by Rachel’s research suggestions and insightful questions early in the process.
When we began essay work, it became evident to me that Rachel had been making a strong, genuine effort to understand me as a person across all facets throughout the prior months. Rather than simply providing instructions, she (patiently) used an arsenal of thought-provoking questions that extracted information and guided me to craft my best essays. Similarly, Rachel was a wonderful interview prep partner. She had a firm understanding of what schools were looking for and a special ability to convey the finer details of the process. To hit on a few other things: Rachel always kept me on track and on schedule, she’s a fantastic communicator, and possesses a great sense of humor which is much needed at times.
Most importantly, I just enjoyed working with Rachel because she’s a great person. In the end, I was accepted at every school I applied to, including my dream school, Tuck. I cannot say enough good things!
It has been a great pleasure to work with Rachel Nelson from Gatehouse Admissions. She played a massive part in my acceptance to Columbia Business School, my dream school.
I was first introduced to the Gatehouse team through a mutual friend where Liza, the founder, set up a call to align my goals with what her team could offer. After a chat and the fact that I really wanted to go to CBS and continue my career in finance but in a different department, she recommended that I work with Rachel, who had extensive experience in the finance sector.
Looking back at my initial essays, it is, to say the least, embarrassing with so much “BS” that needed to go away. Rachel was super responsive and always forwarded my essays at every interaction. I can firmly say that her help was ESSENTIAL in getting into CBS with my stats. I had a 700 GMAT working for the Middle Office at a bulge bracket firm. Not the best in terms of resume, but Rachel made everything seamless and logical. Also for the interview prep, every question was from the batch we practiced just a few days prior, which I thought was something to highlight.
To all of you applying to MBA now, I strongly suggest you work with Rachel or at least have a consultation call with Liza. It is a 100% game-changer.
I highly recommend Rachel Nelson at Gatehouse Admission to anyone looking for expert guidance on their MBA application process. I had the pleasure of working with Rachel and was impressed by her professionalism, expertise, and support throughout the process.
When I first reached out to Rachel, I was feeling overwhelmed and unsure of where to start with my MBA application. I was looking at top-tier schools, and felt a bit discouraged by my chances of getting in. I studied entrepreneurship at a small business school, and my GPA of 3.1 was below the median for most of my target schools. In addition to my stats, I had a tight deadline of just 2 months to get everything in order, and I wasn’t sure if it was even possible. In our first discussion, Rachel immediately put me at ease and assured me that we could make it happen.
Over the next few weeks, Rachel worked closely with me to get my application in the best shape possible. Furthermore, she helped me craft a great narrative for my personal statement, provided valuable feedback on my resume and essays, and even prepared me for my interviews with mock questions and a full mock interview. Rachel always made herself available to answer all questions and offer support, no matter how small they may have seemed.
In the end, thanks to Rachel’s help, I was accepted into CBS, my top choice MBA program and couldn’t be happier. I can’t thank Rachel enough for all that she did for me, and I highly recommend her services to anyone looking for the best guidance throughout their MBA journey.
Taking the plunge and deciding to finally apply to MBA programs, I was aware of the compressed timeline I had put myself under when I started working with Rachel in late May 2021 for R1 applications. I had not yet taken the GRE, had a rough, but not solid, the idea of my career goals and lacked insight into the process coming from a non-traditional background. Trying to play “catch-up,” I found Rachel’s balance of pragmatism and encouragement provided indispensable support when anxiety or doubt crept in. Knowing the process very well, she was able to help me set priorities and remain focused on the tasks before me—all to stunning results, acceptance at all three of my schools!
By way of background, I graduated from a top state school in 2015 with a 3.86 GPA majoring in Art History. Following undergrad, I obtained a Masters’s degree in Art History, and for the past five years, I have been working in the art industry at a major auction house. I opted to take the GRE and scored 168 in Verbal and 165 in Quant.
Rachel helped me take my application to the next level by pushing me to dig deeper and strive for more specificity in my essays. I always felt that I had ownership of my essays, but it was her astute questions and comments on drafts that drew out new ideas and connections (which I never would have thought to make on my own) and helped bring my story to life. She asked tough questions that gave me pause to think why something matters and if it does matter, how to show (and not tell!) that it does. If I got stuck, she was always willing to hop on Zoom and brainstorm or chat through my ideas. Rachel was the ultimate sounding board! This was especially helpful in crystalizing my career goals. In our conversations, Rachel would always say something that I could latch onto and research more in order to decide whether it made sense for me or not.
Beyond essays and career goals, Rachel answered every one of my minute questions about the applications, calmed my nerves when I convinced myself that I bombed a video essay and reminded me to embrace the uniqueness of my non-traditional background and be myself in interviews.
With her guidance, I applied to and was accepted at Kellogg, Columbia and Tuck (with scholarships at each). Even after acceptance, Rachel helped me weigh pros and cons of each school and provided guidance on negotiating competing scholarship offers.
From beginning to end, Rachel was honest, straightforward, patient and supportive. I honestly believe that my applications would not have been as successful as they were without Rachel’s unique ability to ask the questions that made me dig deeper, reflect further and piece my story together.
I started relatively late on my MBA class of 2024 applications. In fact, Rachel took me in/started to work with me at the beginning of August and I submitted my first round 1 application at the beginning of September, and my second round 1 application mid October. Prior to working with Rachel, I had thought that I had a clear sense and rationale of why business school and potential careers that I could pursue after, but it was clear from initial drafts I shared with Rachel that those reasons were not strong, were not clear enough, and did not make me stand out. From there, I spent some time on Zoom with Rachel and we found a solid thread in my background helping out with my family business which ties nicely to why business school and which industry I would like to explore after, and to think that I wasn’t even going to mention any part of this experience initially (which would have been a huge mistake)!
Rachel turned my applications around and helped me get into the two schools I applied to: Wharton and CBS. To give a sense of my background, I am 3 years out of undergrad (will be 4 years out when I attend business school), I attended Stanford for undergrad and took the GRE one time testing: 162 verbal, 160 quant, 4.0 writing. I work at a quant hedge fund in Business Development and I studied Economics in college.
Rachel is very timely and provides insightful comments. I didn’t even think I needed a consultant initially, but each time after really taking in Rachel’s feedback on my draft and ruminating on where I am going with my essays, I find that my drafts significantly improved from week to week. I admit that it was daunting to receive feedback and markups throughout my essay each time I thought I shared a perfect draft, but working with Rachel got me from a very different place from where I started to when I finally hit submit.
For those of you who are debating on whether you need a consultant, or those of you who are choosing consultants to work with, my experience with Rachel was worth every penny.
I worked with Rachel for about a year starting in the winter of 2020 all the way until my admission in December 2021. I applied to Stanford GSB, HBS and Wharton and have just gotten 2/3 acceptances into HBS and Wharton. I will be pursuing my MBA in the Fall of 2022 at HBS in the class of 2024.
Just to give you a sense of my background, I’m a male with about 5 years of experience including national service in Singapore (2 years). I seemed untraditional coming into the MBA application process and it was pretty scary. I had been working as an Associate in a consumer venture capital fund in Singapore (the fund was quite small – US$400M) after national service, my GRE scores were on par with the HBS / Wharton averages but well below the GSB average – I got a 163V, 163Q. I applied with a 3.67 GPA from an undergraduate business school – I graduated from NYU’s Stern School of Business in 2017 with a BS in Business with concentrations in Finance and Global Business. I also did 2 years of military service in Singapore as part of the Singapore Police Force from 2017-2019 and then joined venture capital from 2019-2021.
So with this rather untraditional background, I wanted to tell a strong story so connected with Rachel to start the process. She is honest, straightforward and hyper-effective in extracting your story. She started me off by answering a number of questions from growing up, to high school, university, and work in what she called an “Experience Inventory” to get an understanding of certain stories and threads in my life and how they have impacted my choices.
From there we pulled from a number of these stories to craft our first draft. Because she is so focused on a hand full of applicants every year, she is a master at understanding your story and how to best position yourself. Through each draft, she will communicate to you if the story you’ve pulled from your experience inventory works or doesn’t and which story you should include instead to create a stronger essay. She gives super-specific advice on everything from resumes to essays to smaller questions on the application because she has done her homework on you and what you have accomplished.
I did feel a bit insecure about the process because of my background – I felt I was climbing an uphill battle vs. consultants or bankers from larger firms but I think what Rachel was best at is helping me gain confidence in my story. She was my biggest champion and was always there whenever I had questions on certain parts of my essay and story.
She had a clear plan for me that we followed through our google sheet and through emails so deadlines were very clear. She was organized and helped me organize myself while balancing work, tests and essays. Interview mocking with her was very helpful as well. She helped provide guides throughout the entire process that included potential questions and how to answer them.
My wife and I are now moving to Boston. It is the absolute best-case scenario given we had wanted to make the transition to the US for a while. I attribute a lot of my application success to Rachel’s help. I could not have done anything without her and am so happy with the money spent. It is a daunting process and sometimes you may feel like the money you spent is not worth it because there are no guarantees. But, Rachel does her best for you 100% of the time – so regardless of the outcome, you will feel like your time spent with her is worth it.
Background: Male, 6 years work experience in banking ops role, average GMAT score.
Result: Accepted to INSEAD
As a first-time applicant, I found the MBA application process daunting, and to have someone like Rachel as a knowledge resource was extremely helpful. Rachel helped me organize my thoughts and provided amazing feedback that I would not have without her as my consultant.
While brainstorming content for the essay topics, she had a great sense of the qualities that my dream school looked for in its candidates and provided excellent guidance on the aspects of my background that would put my best foot forward. She was instrumental in helping me shape a tight story for my MBA candidacy. When my essays missed the mark, Rachel gave me candid, specific feedback ranging from what topics required further elaboration to which achievements best reflected my motivations. She was also an excellent aid through the interview process, helping tidy up my responses to the challenge questions and providing feedback before my actual interviews.
Finally, she was responsive even on weekends when I, unfortunately, had to push back deadlines due to my hectic work schedule. She also advised me on correspondences with my backup schools, even though she was not obligated to. These seemingly small acts made me feel that she was truly committed to my success.
I would recommend Rachel to anyone looking for a top-notch consultant. I could not imagine going through it without her, and I am thankful that I had the chance to work with her.
Background: Male, financial services background, top 20 undergrad b-school, average test results, and GPA.
Results: Accepted to CBS.
I had been unsatisfied with a previous admissions consultant when I was introduced to Rachel near my application deadline. Initially, I was nervous to switch and reinvest time and money at this late stage, but it was the best decision I could have ever made.
I could not recommend Rachel more highly. She was extremely proactive, efficient, and effective throughout the application process. She helped identify the key elements of my personal narrative and was exceedingly honest in providing feedback on my essays and resume. She pushed me to perform at my best and I ended up with a finished product I could not have been happier with. I felt she truly cared about my outcome and went above and beyond for me.
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