Alice van Harten, Ph.D.

Founding Partner

Alice has advised MBA applicants since 2007 and is proud of her clients’ successes. Her background as a former Bain Consultant and Stanford lecturer puts her in a unique position to coach applicants to top MBA programs.

Alice on Writing Style

I want to tell my MBA story in the most compelling way possible.

That’s great, because Alice began her career in the humanities and loves a good story. She completed her Ph.D. in Classics (read: Ancient Greek philosophy) at the University of Cambridge. During this time, she studied Plato’s philosophical writings, reading tens of thousands of texts along the way about what it means to live a good life and to pursue work that has a moral purpose.

Not only did she read extensively on this topic, she wrote original research papers (e.g. Socrates on Life and Death), and tutored Cambridge undergraduates in writing as part of the intimate “tutorial system” through which Ph.D. students instruct undergraduates.

Alice continued teaching in the Introduction to the Humanities program at Stanford University, where she again helped elite undergraduate students to write compelling personal essays. She can help you to find your story and express it in clear terms that an admissions committee can understand.

“Alice was so committed to my reflection process and brainstorming content for application essays. It was important for me to have my genuine voice, rather than being directed by a formulaic consultant who knows ‘what works’ in an application. She was meticulous and extremely responsive when we worked on my essays, constantly challenging me to dig deeper into my experiences and motivations. She was not afraid to tell me when a draft wasn’t working and always explained her thought process while taking my feedback into account.”

I want to work with a consultant who understands my career.

Alice is a former Bain consultant, and has worked as part of the in-house strategy team for leading academic publisher Elsevier. During her time as a consultant, Alice worked on cases including due diligence for private equity investors, reducing churn for consumer subscription products, and new product launches for manufacturing companies. Later, at Elsevier, Alice worked on quarterly budgeting and forecasting for a publicly traded company, and digital transformation for a company switching from traditional print journals to online access.

Since founding Menlo Coaching, Alice has worked with clients from nearly every industry and background:

  • Management consultants
  • Private equity and venture capital investors
  • Public markets investors
  • Investment bankers and commercial bankers
  • Technology professionals at large and small firms
  • Former teachers
  • Military veterans
  • Non-profit professionals
  • And more

Because of her own experiences, and those of her former clients, Alice will understand your professional background and career goals

“The one thing I love the most about Alice is that she never compromises […] she will never settle for anything that’s less than the quality she expects.”

I want to maximize my chances in a competitive application process.

Alice has succeeded in many tough application processes:

  • She won admission to the Ph.D. program at Cambridge University and 100% funding for her studies
  • She secured a postdoc at Stanford University through a highly competitive application process
  • She passed the case interview process and received offers from McKinsey, Bain and BCG–no small feat for an academic with zero previous business experience

Alice can help you to put your best foot forward even if you’re targeting very competitive programs and have an unusual background that doesn’t “fit the mold.”

“I would not have been accepted to Harvard if it weren’t for Alice and Menlo Coaching. As an applicant from a traditionally oversubscribed background (Asian male in finance), I found Alice and Menlo Coaching to be critical to helping me differentiate myself and tell my unique story. She’s definitely had extensive experience working with MBA applicants, and I think the Menlo Coaching system she has developed has been institutionalized and perfected. In addition to being an amazing resource, Alice was also very easy to work with. She gave me her personal attention throughout the entire process and always took time to answer my questions thoughtfully.”

Hear from Alice’s Clients


Meet Your MBA Admissions Consulting Dream Team

David White
Founding Partner

Obinna Arizor portrait
Obinna Arizor
Sr. Consultant

Lainie Blum Cogan
Sr. Consultant & Director

Rebecca Heath Anderson
Rebecca Anderson, MBA
Sr. Consultant & Director

Leslie Monstavicius
Leslie Monstavicius, PhD
Sr. Admissions Consultant

Expert MBA Admissions Consultant, Joy Pincus
Joy Pincus
Sr. Consultant & Director

Pascal Michels, MBA
Sr. Consultant & Director

Jarrett Brandon Early
Sr. Admissions Consultant

Brooke MannellySr. Admissions Consultant

Yaron Dahan, Expert Admissions Consultant
Yaron Dahan
Expert Consultant & Director

Maya Parikh Gandhi
Sr. Admissions Consultant

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