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IBS Consulting

IBS Consulting

Every passing year, tens of thousands of students around the world look forward to the Ivy League admissions. Unfortunately, most applicants have to bear with a disappointing rejection. And this is not surprising!

The eight schools in the Ivy League are of the most sought-after colleges and universities in the world. All based in the northeastern United States, the Ivy League is renowned for its solid academic standards, social prestige and extreme selectivity in admissions.

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The Ivy League acceptance rates over time haven’t really changed. A tiny percentage of 3 to 8 percent is the average Ivy League admission rates. Despite this, these top-tier schools—including Harvard, Yale, Pennsylvania, Princeton, Columbia, Brown, Dartmouth, and Cornell—remain the fantasy alma mater of many ambitious students in Ghana and beyond.

Recognising how competitive getting in is, we’ve been going the extra mile to help more and more Ghanaian students secure their spots in Ivy League schools.

Now, let’s take you on our success story ride.

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Overview

We launched IBS Consulting in the year 2020. After nearly 4 years of staying in business, we’ve helped over 1,000 students and professionals pursue their academic or career goals internationally. 

Due to our huge successes, it didn’t take long before our consulting services spread outside of Ghana and across the nation. As the business grew, our baseline of happy customers grew and we recorded testimonials after testimonials.

There was Prince Duker who we helped secure over $130,000 in scholarships. There was Samuel Kuma-Aboagye who, after hiring our services, got accepted at 10 universities in the UK, including University of Warwick, University of Edinburgh, and Strathclyde, to study Electrical Engineering.

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Of all these stories, none inspired us more than that of Adom Beatrice, our first-ever Ivy League testimony. After a careful scrutiny of her application process plus hundreds of other foreign ones, we’ve discovered exactly what the Ivy League universities want to see in applications. And as they often say, “The Rest Was History.”

The Challenge for Ghanaian Students: Cracking the Ivy League Code

The chances of applicants getting admitted into any of the Ivy League Universities can be greatly increased by up to 90% if the application is totally irresistible. You must understand that these universities are stacked up with a committee of experienced admissions officers who leave no page of any applications unturned.

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The admission officers are ready to check and assess everything you’ve submitted. That’s where it gets tricky for many Ghanaian students since they tend to focus on one strength, say academic transcript, when ultimately everything listed Ivy League admission requirements matters.

“I am inclined to believe that the person who gives every ounce to do something superbly has an advantage over the person whose capacities may be great but who seems to have no desire to stretch them to their limit.”

– President Kingman Brewster, Yale University.

The cracked code to stand out from the rest lies in the answer to the question: “what do Ivy League schools look for.” They want you to give every ounce to every part of your application. Even to the little insignificant ones, present your best. In the end, a lot of these little things may tip the admission scale in your favour.

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During our encounters with Ivy League applicants from Ghana, here are some of the biggest challenges we faced:

1. ACT/SAT Scores May Not Fully Reflect Academic Strengths

Ghanaian students usually face immense pressure to reach a very high SAT or ACT score. A number of these students do exceedingly well within the Ghanaian curriculum, but struggle with the SAT/ACT.

This happens mostly because they are not used to the multiple-choice format and rote memorization focus of standardised tests.

2. Showcasing the Wrong Extracurricular Activities

Applicants from Africa, especially Ghana, tend to put emphasis on local extracurricular activities without putting the Ivy League admission officers into consideration. The officers might not resonate with certain activities common in Ghanaian schools and communities.

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3. Focusing Heavily on Academic Performances

Crafting a unique application that conveys a Ghanaian student’s strengths and aspirations beyond the grades can be challenging. Most applications often focus heavily on academic achievements. This is the wrong way to go about it. 

The Ivy League universities expect applicants to paint a picture of what they are like in the classroom. What personal challenges or economic hardship did they overcome to excel in their studies? What does a particular leadership position mean at their school? They need more information about the applicant’s background. In essence, they need you to bring your application to live.

We are not saying it’s wrong for students to showcase their impressive GPAs, but doing so under the right context is necessary.

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The IBS Solution: The Bridge to Ivy League Admissions

Now that we’ve seen firsthand what the challenges are, our team takes a multi-pronged approach. We call our approach the Ghanaian Ivy League Accelerator. This is evidently why we remain a leading educational consultancy firm with a proven track record of guiding Ghanaian students towards success in Ivy League admissions.

If you’re beginning to wonder how we do it, below is a brief highlight of the steps we take:

1. We brought on Young Ghanaian Ivy League Students.

To better grasp firsthand what it takes a Ghanaian to get into Harvard, Yale or the others, we interviewed and hired students who have their roots in the Ghanaian educational system and cultural background. These students also helped provide mentorship to the Ghanaian students who want to get in.

Just as Isaac Newton had written in a 1675 letter, “if I have seen further [than others], it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.”

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2. We Assessed The Students Before They Get Assessed

Another thing we took note of was ensuring that students applying through us actually merited it. One of the reasons why Ivy League Universities have very low acceptance is because they do not give room for mediocrity. They simply want the best!

So, what we do is have our advisors assess the academic and non-academic history of the applicant to see if it’s solid enough to match with the Ivy League admission requirements. If they don’t merit it, we tell them straight on. We also prepare them a list of alternative universities that fit their interests. 

For instance, to stand out from an extracurricular standpoint, it is not just enough to show that you can participate in boxing or play violin. You have to show that you are singularly talented. Did you get recruited as a baseball player? Are you an award-winning researcher? They would be happy to hear from you.

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3. We Build Our Applications Strategically

We attribute more than half of our Ivy League admission successes to the quality time we spend on building an unmatched application. From the application essays to the recommendation letter, we ensure everything ties into a singular narrative. 

At IBS Consulting, we hold the hands of the prospective students through the process. If they’d be getting the recommendation letters from their teachers, we ask them to share anecdotes and experiences. For essays, we brainstorm impactful essays that tie back to a Ghanaian context or strategically select activities that demonstrate leadership within the Ghanaian community.

If the applicant has a family member as an alumni of the university, we make it known in the application to make our applicant enjoy the privilege of the Ivy League legacy admission. All these help to bring life to the applicant’s unique story.  

4. We Help Applicants with Financial Aids

To help our students get in without draining their wallets, we help them navigate their ways towards securing scholarships and financial aid. Universities in the Ivy league offer “need-based” scholarships for students in Africa as long as they are from a low-income family. 

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Adom Beatrice: A Case Study of Our First Ivy League Success

Young as she was, Adom Beatrice never stopped dreaming of entering Yale University. On reviewing her transcript, we could tell that she was brilliant and talented. She had a consistent academic record, particularly in science subjects, and harboured a passion for improving healthcare access and medical services within local communities in Africa. 

However, Beatrice, like many Ghanaian students, faced specific challenges on her path to Ivy League admissions.

“Before working with IBS, I had done some research online, but felt overwhelmed by the complexities of Ivy League admissions. IBS literally held my hands throughout the process. Their guidance and support, especially in crafting a strong application that showcased my unique experiences and goals, made a world of difference.”

Beatrice impressed us during our collaborative assessment process. Here’s a highlight of what we accomplished together:

  • We translated the community projects Beatrice undertook into a format that would resonate with Ivy League admissions officers who are unfamiliar with the Ghanaian context.
  • While applying, we gave preference to the school with the Ivy League highest acceptance rate.
  • We worked closely with Beatrice to craft a compelling essay that detailed her passion for building digital healthcare solutions and her aim to improve local healthcare access in Ghana.
  • We assisted her in applying for financial aid and scholarships to make her Ivy League dream a reality.
  • We provided Beatrice the support services she needed to acclimate to the new academic and cultural environment.

Today, Beatrice is a thriving student at the prestigious Yale University. She actively contributes to student organisations developing cutting-edge medical technologies. 

Over to you…

Our success story is based on years of trying, testing and learning. Our experts who have gone through the pain, so you don’t have to. If you’re interested in optimising your admission to any Ivy League school, fill out our free consultation form. We look forward to hearing from you. 

 

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