MBA transformers: Carrie Stearns

Once: Research Scientist, Cornell

Now: Senior Marketing Manager, Philips Healthcare

Carrie StearnsAfter defending her doctoral thesis in chemical biology at Cornell, Carrie Stearns (MBA 2008) climbed into her car and drove four days straight across the USA to begin orientation for the Foster MBA Program.

She wasn’t keen to prolong the transition from cancer research to management development. “I loved the science,” she says. “Just not doing the science. I wanted a little more control over my destiny, a way to make a more immediate impact on healthcare.”

Foster was the ticket. She loved the diversity of students, dove into the coursework and entered the UW Business Plan Competition (her team’s plan for an algaebased biofuel won Best Clean Tech).

She also turned an internship at Philips into a job managing the healthcare company’s cardiovascular and surgery device service portfolios. She helped launch the prostate cancer drug Provenge at Dendreon before returning to Philips to lead its women’s healthcare ultrasound business in North America.

“It’s the rare opportunity in marketing to both set the strategy and drive implementation,” she says.

And no looking back. “I don’t think I would have been happy doing research,” she admits. “I’m passionate about marketing and healthcare. And improving patients’ lives.”

Find out about the other alumni who transformed their careers via the MBA Program.