“Stoic corporate athlete who watches Ninja Turtles regularly, loves hummus, and never misses leg day.”
Hometown: Lehi, Utah
Fun Fact About Yourself: I’m a lifelong angler. Top catch: 900lb marlin
Undergraduate School and Major: Brigham Young University | Business Administration: Supply Chain and Operations
Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Optum (UnitedHealth) | National Strategy and Operations Manager
What makes Seattle such a great place to earn an MBA? High concentration of, and uniquely intimate access to, world-class talent and world-class organizations
Aside from your classmates and location, what was the key part of the school’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? Foster’s unique and deliberate emphasis on keeping a small class size enables a number of valuable benefits, including the ability to enjoy more intimate classroom experiences, exceptional access to career advising and local executive mentors, and an organically collaborative student environment.
What club or activity excites you most at this school? More than any other school I interviewed at, Foster proudly reported a high amount of involvement supporting the school’s sports teams. I can’t wait to be a husky tailgater.
Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: I’m proud to look back on the list of high-impact solutions I designed and implemented that directly enabled thousands of healthcare professionals to more effectively care for their patients. Though it is exciting to secure million-dollar savings opportunities, my most rewarding accomplishments came from feeling like I made the world a little bit healthier.
What led you to pursue an MBA at this point in your career? After five years consulting in the healthcare environment, this seemed like an optimal stage of my career to step back, broaden my skillset, and diversify my industry experience in order to re-enter the industry in the coming years with a with a fresh set of eyes. Some of the biggest innovators in modern business were considered outsiders in the industries they changed. I want to maintain that “outsider perspective” throughout my career.
What was the most challenging question you were asked during the admissions process? The classic “Tell me about yourself” icebreaker always seemed to be my make-or-break point in each interview, so I put a lot of pressure on myself to have a strong response. Setting the tone with a succinct, laser-focused TMAY lays the foundation for a great interview. Without it, you feel like you spend the rest of the time playing catch-up.
How did you determine your fit at various schools? I’m somewhat introverted, so finding a program where I could have an intimate learning experience and not feel invisible was a top priority. Additionally, I really sought after a high-collaboration class culture where I wouldn’t feel obligated to compete with classmates in order to succeed or be recognized.
Beyond using the traditional websites to get informed on the class stats at each school, there was no replacement for simply talking alumni. After speaking with a couple folks from one school, it becomes obvious what that program is about.
What was your defining moment and how did it prepare you for business school? I’ve always wanted to spend my career pursuing the reassurance that I’ve made the world a better place. My defining moment(s) continue to emerge each time I step back and observe how my work helped people live healthier lives. That validation continues to motivate me to learn more and become a better leader so I can have a wider impact.
What special ingredient do you see yourself bringing to the Class of 2022? How will that enrich the MBA experience? Life balance is huge to me, and I don’t want to lose that even in the middle of a rigorous MBA experience. I hope to contribute sources of outlet for my classmates. Whether it comes in the form of weekend adventures, evening burrito binges, or early-morning gym sessions, I want to be a facilitator of the non-curricular moments that galvanize teams.
What is your favorite company and what could business students learn from them? I love ‘Moneyball’ companies that take age-old problems and boldly generate non-traditional solutions. DaVita is a great example of this mindset in the healthcare industry. The dialysis environment is a tough one for patients and is extremely costly to the healthcare system. DaVita is continually pioneering new ways to enable positive patient experiences, innovative clinical methods, and transformational business strategies.
DON’T MISS: MEET WASHINGTON FOSTER’S MBA CLASS OF 2022