I started my career working in the admissions office at the University of Chicago, my alma mater. Later, I joined UC Berkeley's Management, Entrepreneurship, and Technology program—where we accepted only 2% of applicants. Now, I sit on the opposite side of the table, helping talented students realize their college dreams. I founded HelpWithApps.com to help students maximize their chances for admission to the nation's most selective universities. In 2021, 20 (of 21) students with whom I worked in applying to "Top 20" universities were admitted to one or more (including Princeton, MIT, Yale, Stanford, UChicago, Northwestern, Columbia, Dartmouth, and Duke). And with each student, I look beyond universities' rankings to ensure the best possible academic, extracurricular, and cultural fit. I hope I can be part of your success story, too.
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Our sessions together helped me beyond my college apps. While I suppose I've had a rough sense of what I wanted to do after high school, I've always felt a bit scattered and unsure of which exact direction I wanted to take. Talking with Marcella to structure out my apps gave me a much more coherent picture of my future ambitions and that honestly might be the most important takeaway I got from our meetings.
- Dexter, admitted to Columbia and Cornell, class of 2025
Marcella isn't simply an essay editor who looks at your essay briefly and moves on. She introduced me to strategies that I truly feel increased my chances of admission. I always felt like Marcella was putting 160% effort in her edits. She was there for me at 2 am, editing essays. She always took in my input and never threw away ideas. I really felt like I was presenting the best version of myself as I applied to college, and I couldn't have done it without Marcella.
- Maggie, Duke class of 2025
Prior to working with Marcella, we were very intimidated because the admission process is so subjective and it seems like a roll of dice. She helped us to understand what the admissions officers are looking for. She listens to students and helps them craft their position. In the process, the student doesn't feel as if their voice is getting lost; instead, Marcella helps them amplify their voice.
- Raj, whose daughter was admitted to MIT class of 2025
I love sharing my knowledge and experience with students and their families. Above all, I love discovering a student's strengths, helping to overcome their weaknesses, and seeing the joy on their faces when they see their dreams realized with an acceptance to their favorite university. I hope I can share that with you and your family as well.