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Is Admissions Consulting Ethical?


May 16, 2021


Josh Jones

Well, I hate to say it, but the answer depends.  If you’re hiring someone to write your essays, then no, it’s not.

But if you’re hiring someone to write your essays, then I think you’ve been conned.  In the final analysis, this is all about presenting you in the best possible light, and how can anyone else know more about you than you?  So why would you want your essay about you to be written by anyone other than the world’s leading authority on you?

The point of a good consultant, like our consultants at Test Prep Unlimited, is to give you an unbiased expert opinion.  Now, I know what you’re thinking, “But my school gives me that for free.” But are your school’s counselors unbiased? They’re eager to protect your school’s numbers, so they will steer you towards safety.  (After all, they don’t benefit when lots and lots of your fellow graduates get rejected from the same program, so they’ll discourage you from taking chances.) Don’t get me wrong: Sometimes, you should be discouraged; Sometimes, you need to hear hard truths.  

But not always.  

Sometimes, the real you isn’t obvious; Sometimes, it’s hard to put your numbers (your GPA and test scores) into perspective; Sometimes, your achievements aren’t obvious.  And remember that your school’s advisors aren’t experts in every business; They don’t necessarily know what X achievement or Y title really means, so they might miss the importance (or the potential) of certain points in your resume.  

That’s where we come in; at Test Prep Unlimited, we can take the time to focus on you.  Let me illustrate our point by analogy. Let me tell you about a potential quarterback who was available in the NFL draft.  You could say he wasn’t very fast, that he didn’t have a great vertical leap, an impressive physique, or a strong arm; you could note that he wasn’t even a consistent starter in college because his coaches preferred a sophomore QB.  Or you could say that he’d won big game after big game, repeatedly leading his team back from large deficits in high-stakes games played before large crowds and even larger national TV audiences. In other words, you could say the evidence proved he had performed at the highest levels in the most NFL-like of situations.

Either way, you’d have been talking about Tom Brady.

At TPU, it’s our job to help you get them (those pesky Admissions Officers) to think about you in the right way.  In my mind, that’s not unethical, that’s helping both sides make the right decision.

I’ll be honest: if you’re Tom Brady, you’re going to succeed even if you go to your “safety” school, but why make it harder for yourself?  Why not let us help get you into the school you deserve? 

At TPU, our goal is to ensure that no Admissions Officer will ever sit around wondering why they passed on you; Our goal is to present you in the best possible light, so every Admissions Officer will know who you are and why you belong at their school.


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