Meet Abdusamed, a distinguished admissions coach and the founder of Sherif Academy, renowned for his expertise in guiding candidates to top MBA programs and prestigious internships.
Abdusamed has a Bachelor’s from Carnegie Mellon University and an MBA from Harvard Business School. Abdusamed leveraged his high-profile internship experience and Harvard education to establish Sherif Academy. This non-profit organization focuses on assisting students from low socioeconomic backgrounds in gaining admissions to leading colleges and MBA programs and securing Fortune 500 internships. Over five years, Sherif Academy has supported over 5,000 students worldwide, with more than 600 gaining admission to their dream MBA programs.
Abdusamed’s professional network extends to partnerships with key figures in MBA admissions, including the Assistant Dean of MBA Admissions at Harvard, MIT Sloan, Stanford GSB, and Wharton School. These connections have provided him with deep insights into what top institutions seek in candidates and the nuances of their selection processes. Abdusamed has successfully coached candidates toward acceptance into several elite schools, including Harvard Business School, Stanford GSB, Wharton, Kellogg, and MIT Sloan,
His journey to becoming an admissions coach was inspired by his father's dedication to providing him with the best educational resources. His father's belief in his potential led Abdusamed to excel academically, culminating in his admission to Harvard Business School through the 2+2 Program. This experience instilled in him a desire to provide similar opportunities to others.
Abdusamed's coaching style is characterized by a personalized approach, helping candidates to find and express their unique stories. He collaborates closely with applicants, focusing on their strengths and aspirations to develop tailored strategies. He aims to empower candidates to own their narratives and confidently navigate the competitive admissions landscape.
In his free time, Abdusamed enjoys connecting with founders from underrepresented backgrounds and indulging in his love for sports, including semi-professional soccer and basketball. He is an avid fan of Arsenal and the Lakers.
Meet Alexei, an admissions counselor devoted to supporting MBA candidates in their unique journeys with the most sincere commitment and respect.
Alexei has a Bachelor’s from the University of Cambridge and an MBA from Harvard Business School. His experience stems from a diverse background that includes mentoring students through the intricate MBA application process, ensuring the creation of robust and authentic submissions. Alexei has successfully guided candidates to acceptance at prestigious institutions such as Harvard, Chicago, Stanford, Wharton, and Kellogg, showcasing a track record of excellence in crafting compelling applications.
Professionally, Alexei has over 15 years of cross-functional business experience in investment banking, at renowned institutions such as Morgan Stanley, corporate and business development in Silicon Valley, as well as entrepreneurship.
What sets Alexei apart is an unwavering passion for coaching, finding fulfillment in helping candidates express the uniqueness and brilliance of their journeys, coupled with a constant reminder of their immense capabilities.
Characterized by a coaching style that is highly responsive, deeply committed, and marked by humility, Alexei's greatest strength lies in his ability to foster authenticity and individuality in each applicant's narrative.
In his free time, Alexei enjoys running and writing, maintaining an unbroken commitment to these daily activities.
Allan is an accomplished admissions coach with over a decade of experience guiding students through the intricate and competitive admissions landscape. Professionally, Allan is a senior leader at Shell, a Fortune 10 company.
Allan has a Bachelor’s from Cornell University and an MBA from Chicago Booth School of Business, where he played a crucial role as an alumni interviewer for prospective and admitted students for over five years. Allan's extensive admissions experience spans a diverse spectrum, covering admissions consultation for early and high school candidates, essay preparation, extracurricular activity strategies, and comprehensive support for undergraduate and MBA programs. Students he has recently coached have been admitted to several top-tier schools, such as Cornell, Northwestern, and Penn.
As a first-generation college student, Allan intimately understands the challenges and complexities of the admissions process. This experience fuels his passion for supporting and guiding students through their application journey. He enjoys seeing students and their families celebrate success, instilling confidence in the application journey.
Allan's greatest strengths lie in his ability to break down the application process into manageable steps, providing clarity and purpose for each aspect. His coaching style focuses on understanding the rationale behind application components, enabling students to build intentional and meaningful applications.
Allan excels in transforming students' shortcomings into strengths, creating applicant profiles that resonate with admissions officers beyond grades and test scores. He encourages applicants to find strength in their weaknesses, emphasizing resilience and competitiveness throughout the application process. He believes perfection is not a prerequisite for success; embracing one's unique journey can make the application stand out.
Outside coaching, Allan enjoys playing and competing in badminton tournaments and exploring the world with his wife and two children.
Meet Alleah, a dedicated admissions coach ready to guide individuals through their MBA application journey.
Alleah has earned a Bachelor’s from Brandeis University and is pursuing an MBA at Duke Fuqua. While at Brandeis University, she served as an Admissions Interviewer, gaining a valuable perspective into the application review process. Her greatest learnings from this experience include understanding the qualities sought by admissions committees, nuances between different business schools' criteria, and the importance of holistic candidate evaluation.
Alleah brings a rich background in coaching students, including prospective MBA candidates, through their application process with her non-profit organization, Mother’s Legacy Foundation. She has also been coached by MBA admission professionals, gaining invaluable insights into the admissions process and learning the key tools needed to be a strong candidate. Alleah's guidance has helped students secure acceptance to several top-tier schools, including Fuqua, Ross, Kellogg, and Tuck.
Alleah finds it genuinely invigorating to witness individuals' transformative journeys. It's incredibly fulfilling for her to be a catalyst in someone's growth, aiding them in unlocking their potential and achieving their goals. Alleah’s joy comes from seeing the tangible impact of guidance and support in someone's life, building meaningful connections while guiding individuals, and learning as much from her mentees as they do from her. Alleah is devoted to supporting every candidate, not just as an advisor/coach but as someone who understands the importance of a well-rounded, genuine application that reflects their true selves.
Alleah is a people person, and her greatest strengths are personalized mentorship, strategic guidance, and holistic development. She leverages a blend of interactive yet reflective and productive, one-on-one coaching sessions to create a dynamic learning environment in her sessions and for overall coaching relationships. Alleah's coaching methodology prioritizes fostering a deep understanding of each student’s personal and professional goals and enhancing that with their personal stories. She enjoys encouraging students to remember that the application process isn't just about showcasing academic achievements—it's about painting a holistic picture of who they are—embracing passions, sharing unique stories, and letting authenticity shine.
In her downtime, Alleah thrives on variety. Whether catching the latest blockbuster at the movies, jetting off to new destinations to satisfy her wanderlust, cheering passionately at soccer and basketball games, or embarking on adventures with her beloved Goldendoodle, she finds joy in every moment. These activities keep Alleah balanced, energized, and constantly seeking new experiences. Plus, having a furry companion beside her makes every adventure memorable!
Aman has a Bachelor's from Rutgers University, a Master's from Johns Hopkins University, and an MBA from The Darden School of Business. Having served as an admissions interviewer at Darden and actively participating in the admissions process for two consecutive years, Aman gained valuable insights. During this time, he discovered that Darden places high value on a candidate's potential contributions to the university, emphasizing the narrative behind their MBA pursuit, and the meaningful connections within that story. Furthermore, Aman found that the admissions committee at Darden values candidates who make the effort to visit the school, seeing it as a demonstration of their commitment. Aman's expertise has been instrumental in guiding candidates to successful acceptances at esteemed institutions such as HBS, Tuck, Darden, Columbia, Yale, Georgetown, and others.
As a former teacher, Aman loves the opportunity to take what he learned and help make other people's lives easier. He has also been a basketball coach, SAT tutor, and mentor at university multiple times, truly enjoying the process of mentoring.
Aman's greatest strengths lie in his exceptional ability to cultivate understanding and adaptability tailored to each individual. His distinctive approach blends being very specific with thought-provoking insights, aiming not to prescribe actions but to guide individuals toward self-discovery and growth through their own efforts. In the application process, he strategically places considerable weight on financial considerations and the pursuit of potential scholarships, as he himself was awarded the prestigious Jefferson Fellowship, a full scholarship at Darden.
Aman is a member of the Consortium, understanding its ranking system and emphasizing commitment to its mission in his applications. In his free time, he enjoys watching movies, hanging out with friends and family, playing golf and basketball, and coaching basketball.
Anurag brings a lifelong passion for teaching and mentoring to guide MBA candidates through the intricate process of gaining admission to top-tier business schools.
Anurag has a Bachelor’s from Stanford University and an MBA from the Chicago Booth School of Business, where he served as an Admissions Fellow during his second year. In this role, he contributed to the application review process and interviewed prospective students. Post-graduation, he continued to share his insights as an Alumni Interviewer at Booth, interacting with numerous applicants worldwide. Professionally, Anurag has nine years of experience at top technology and consumer companies, including Apple, Nike, and T-Mobile.
Anurag's journey began as a teaching assistant at Stanford during his college years, fostering his dedication to supporting and guiding others. His coaching style is firmly grounded in transparent, growth-oriented feedback. Anurag believes in being direct yet compassionate when discussing areas for improvement, embodying a growth mindset mentality. Before offering guidance, he prioritizes actively listening to each person's story and gathering comprehensive background information to contextualize their capabilities and aspirations.
When working with MBA candidates, Anurag aims to empower them to express their authentic voice. Drawing from his experience navigating the application process, he understands the challenges of articulating rich, multi-faceted experiences within tight word limits. Anurag’s approach is collaborative rather than prescriptive, engaging in discussions to identify and highlight compelling aspects of their unique journey.
Anurag's greatest strengths lie in his ability to provide insightful guidance and collaborate with candidates effectively. Having successfully aided applicants in gaining admission to esteemed institutions such as Wharton, Booth, and Columbia, he brings a wealth of knowledge about the specific criteria and comprehensive assessment approaches employed by admissions committees.
Anurag became intricately familiar with Booth's distinct criteria and approach to holistically assessing applicants across various dimensions, including academic preparedness, professional accomplishments, leadership potential, communication skills, and other intangibles indicating one's likelihood of success in business school and beyond. Anurag also honed his ability to discern applicants' authentic motivations and genuine interest in the school during interviews.
Beyond his professional endeavors, Anurag enjoys playing and watching soccer and tennis, engaging in experimental cooking, exploring the Pacific Northwest through hiking, and immersing himself in non-fiction literature.
Meet Mary, one of our expert admissions consultants with almost forty years of experience in higher education serving as an important resource to students, faculty, and corporate partners.
Mary began her educational journey with a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She then went on to earn an MS degree from Duquesne University, and a Master of Education from Columbia University. After teaching for well over a decade, Mary’s career in student services began when she served at Columbia as the Associate Director of Athletics and then as the Director of Financial Aid. Her vast experience in both undergraduate and graduate school admissions includes positions as the Director of Admissions for the School of Education, Nursing and the Arts at New York University; the Director of Admissions, Columbia School of Nursing, and the Associate Director of Admissions for MBA Programs at the Columbia School of Business.
During her years at the Columbia School of Business, Mary served as Assistant Dean of Student Affairs for MBA Academic Advising and as the Corporate Director for Executive Education Programs. She later moved back to one of her alma maters, the University of Colorado at Boulder, where she spent twelve years as Director of Career Services for both undergraduate and graduate students at the Leeds School of Business and an additional six years as Manager for Corporate Outreach and Student Engagement for Burridge Center for Finance. Finally, while still working part-time at CU Boulder, Mary accepted a position as Director of Colorado Mountain university.
Mary’s passion for education has been present in every professional role she has had since graduation. With her outgoing personality, Mary plays an integral role in the lives of every applicant she works with, and she often builds relationships that last far longer than the typical advising experience.
As a coach who has been in a number of roles from educator to Ivy League Assistant Dean, Mary’s greatest strengths are her insight, wealth of knowledge, and devotion to her field. She cares deeply for each student she coaches, and is well versed in how to craft a unique and powerful application from start to finish. From interview prep to essay writing, Mary is an excellent resource and is highly motivated to help students achieve their academic goals.
Mary has formed lasting bonds with many of the students she has coached and enjoys cheering them on throughout their careers!