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"You're the best! Your suggestions on the "goals" essay were very constructive. I reworked it by adding some color, watering down the business-speak, and removing unnecessary technical detail. I believe it is now at 998 words. Whew! Once again, thank you for your careful attention. I really appreciate your help!"

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Sample 1


I was surprised to read that the essays are driving you nuts - I would never have guessed from the quality of your writing. Your letter is clear, well structured, and free of glaring errors or oversights.

It sounds like what you most need right now is a quick thumbs-up or thumbs-down. To give you that answer, I'll say that I think this essay is good enough for you to safely meet your December 20th deadline.

If you do want to spend another day or so tweaking, though, my main piece of advice would be to make it shorter. It's close to 900 words right now, and that's a bit long for a letter. Aim to cut between one and two hundred words. The areas that had me drifting were the two paragraphs devoted to describing your work experiences. You might try to cull and sharpen them, working to make them a bit punchier. Do this especially if you deal with your work experience in greater detail in your other essays.

Both your introductory and concluding paragraphs are strong. You don't need to touch those, which should come as a great relief, since these are generally the areas that give applicants the most trouble. I also enjoyed reading about your experiences in Africa and other countries.

If the rest of your qualifications were less strong, or if this was going to be your only submission, I might recommend that you try to add interest to your essay by making it more personal. You might, for example, try to explain better what drew you to the finance industry and write more passionately about what motivates you to pursue an investment career in the future. But given that you will have a chance to expound further on these issues in other essays, and that your qualifications for acceptance are already very strong, I think this essay is going to do just fine.

To sum up: this letter will provide a good introduction to your background and capabilities and will certainly not harm your chances for acceptance.

I hope this is helpful. Good luck!

Sample 2


I would recommend giving your essay another pass or two before you consider submitting it to the committee at Tuck. I have given you some suggestions for structure and content below. Once you have incorporated some of this advice, I recommend a thorough proofreading to correct some of the awkward phrasing and usage.

My first recommendation has to do with the overall balance of your essay. I like that you have structured your essay into three distinct parts: 1) your past experiences, 2) your goals through your 20s, 30s, 40s, and beyond, and 3) why you want to go to Tuck. But you spend too large a portion of the essay on the middle of these.

The first thing you should probably do is separate out a good, solid introductory paragraph. I like your first sentence - it sets you up as a very organized, goal oriented person. But you could follow through a little better with the idea of this master plan. In the introduction you could give a good general sense of the plan and why and where Tuck fits into it.

Then your next couple of paragraphs can be devoted to what you have done since then to forward your plans. The current paragraph needs to be better organized and split into two - the first can deal with your extracurricular activities, but at least one full paragraph should be devoted wholly to your work experiences. Try to make it a little clearer exactly what you are doing, and why, and how it fits into your plan and makes you a better candidate for B-school.

Your goals, in turn, can probably be compressed. Then transition from your goals into a more full explanation of why you want to be admitted into Tuck particularly. You might want to do a little more research into the school before attempting this. Pay particular attention to rewriting the sentence beginning "Why I want to..." - the sentiment you express is fine, but the grammar needs work!

I think that with some work you will be able to communicate to the committee that you are, indeed, a qualified candidate!

I hope this has been helpful. Good luck and best wishes!

Sample 3


What interesting and impressive experiences you've had! There's a lot that I really like about your essays. First, I like that you're able to express quite a lot in a relatively short amount of space. This might not sound like much, but believe it or not excessive length is one of the biggest problems in B-school essays. Second, you have a great sense of structure. That means that I'm not going to need to recommend a total rewrite. Finally, you have really put yourself into these essays, and that is by far the most difficult and elusive elements to incorporate - and (naturally) one of the most important.

In other words, bravo!

All this praise doesn't quite mean that you're finished, though. The major weakness of all three of your essays is simply a problem with grammar and writing style. I was itching to rework some of your sentences, smoothing out awkward phrases and rearranging the misplaced commas. I would definitely advise that you have someone give your essays a thorough proofing before you hand them in. Using a professional service is not the only option, if you're worried about cost. Anyone with good writing abilities will be able to help. That said, if you do want to submit these to us for editing, the total cost (for all three) would be $85 (based on $105 fee for editing five pages minus $20 for what has already been done).

My only other recommendations would be to work a little more on the conclusion of your first essay ("personal qualities"). That last sentence is a bit abrupt and doesn't sum up the gist of your essay as well as it could. You could actually switch the last two sentences, and with a little rewriting it'll work nicely.

I hope this is helpful to you. Good luck!


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