Apr 08

In the not so distant past, most students in MBA programs were overwhelmingly from a business background, either recent graduates seeking an advanced degree or business professionals upskilling their knowledge and promotability. Today, however, there’s another prominent source of MBA students: the healthcare and life sciences industry.

With healthcare accounting for nearly 20 percent of the U.S. economy – roughly $3.3 trillion – the sector is huge. It’s also incredibly complex with the rapid uptake of technology to support clinical and operational enterprises, mergers of local health systems into regional powerhouses, and the accelerating pace of innovation in new technology, processes and startups. Given this, healthcare is ripe for a new generation of leadership.

Today, it’s not enough for healthcare leaders and administrators to have a clinical-only educational background. Leaders are faced with the critical need to align clinical, operational, and financial goals and objectives, which requires a broader knowledge base encompassing finance, management, operations, and data analytics. Too, they must understand, embrace, and implement innovations across the health system enterprise and at a faster pace than ever before. Indeed, today’s healthcare leaders must be innovators themselves.

I had the honor of attending SCBio’s annual conference last fall in Greenville where I happened to reconnect with an up-and-coming leader from one of South Carolina’s premier health systems and recent graduate of Darla Moore School of Business PMBA program. She had taken my class, Strategic Management of Innovation and Technology, and shared how valuable the class was and continues to be to her career and to her healthcare system. I invite you to read her story here.

As always, thank you for your support. Referrals to Moore School’s PMBA program are always welcome. Please connect with SC Innovates here.

Laura B. Cardinal, PhD
SmartState Endowed Chair for Innovation + Commercialization