Meet the MBA Class of 2024: Alexis Flen, North Carolina (Kenan-Flagler)

Alexis Flen

University of North Carolina, Kenan-Flagler Business School

“Medical student passionate about holistically intersecting with the complexities of healthcare.”

Hometown: Fayetteville, North Carolina

Fun Fact About Yourself: During COVID one of my friend’s and I formed a skateboard crew, with nicknames and handshakes. I still ride my penny board from time to time for nostalgia.

Undergraduate School and Major:

  • UNC-Chapel Hill, BS in biology
  • NC State University, master’s in physiology
  • MD/MBA candidate at UNC-Chapel Hill

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: UNC School of Medicine (SOM), fourth-year medical student and UNC Class SOM President

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of Kenan-Flagler’s MBA curriculum or programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? I was drawn to UNC Kenan-Flagler because of their healthcare concentration. The breadth of course choices enable students to explore various dimensions of healthcare ranging from medical entrepreneurship to international immersion electives.

What has been your first impression of the Kenan-Flagler MBA students and alumni you’ve met so far. Tell us your best Kenan-Flagler story so far. UNC Kenan-Flagler embodies the Carolina Way that I have grown so fond of over the years. As an almost triple Tar Heel, I have come to expect and appreciate the collaborative learning environment that is cultivated amongst colleagues.  This year’s class of 2024 does not disappoint! Although we have only had a few sessions in orientation, I have been able to see the innovative thinking and leadership qualities in my colleagues. My best UNC Kenan-Flagler story so far has been during Team Dynamics exercise with our legacy groups. The 12 of us in a group were tasked with transporting ping pong balls into PVC tubes using only our wits and pencils. The overall exercise was illuminating in that I was able to witness the resilience of our team when faced with obstacles and evolution of thinking and strategy as we ultimately mastered the task.

What course, club or activity excites you the most at Kenan-Flagler? I am most excited about the Student Teams Achieving Results (STAR) program in the spring. The experiential course enables students to work with clients to craft solutions to a specific problem, through the application principles of consulting frameworks and strategy.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: As a medical student, I wear a “variety of hats” to enrich and add innovation to our curriculum through my roles in student government and beyond. My biggest accomplishment during my career in medicine is my work as a Paul A. Godley Art of Medicine Fellow. Through a partnership with the Ackland Art Museum, we curated a seminar series that analyzed race and medicine in the vehicle of art for all incoming first-year medical students. This undertaking was particularly challenging because we were in the height of the Pandemic. Fortunately, my co-fellow and I were able to transition to a virtual setting the series to a virtual landscape. Additionally, through our position as vice presidents of curriculum affairs, as second-year medical students, we were able to work with administration to codify the programming into our medical curriculum.

What is one thing you have recently read, watched, or listened to that you would highly recommend to prospective MBAs? Why? There are various facets of business that are new to me, so I set out to expose myself to media and literature that prepared me for the task at hand. I would recommend the book Machiavelli for Women: Defend Your Worth, Grow Your Ambition and Win the Workplace by Stacey Vanek Smith. This work was provided a dynamic comparison of principles from “The Prince” and women entering the corporate workforce. I have had a chance to apply a few strategies already that has been rewarding.

Looking ahead two years, what would make your MBA experience successful? I am very goals-oriented person, so I gauge my success based on how well I accomplish them. I know I will have hit my mark when I am able to fuse my interests in consulting, strategy and clinically practicing medicine. My ultimate driver in this process is understand the stakeholders, logistics and strategy involved in holistically navigating the healthcare system.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into Kenan-Flagler’s MBA program? I would encourage potential applicants to reflect on their “why.” While I was applying for business school, I would regularly practice introspection to figure out what intrinsically was motivating my pursuit of an MBA. Through detailing my goals, I was able to fashion a narrative of my passions involving affordable healthcare and equitable access.


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