2023 MBA To Watch: Alexa Bragg, Boston University (Questrom)

Alexa Bragg

Boston University, Questrom School of Business

“I am a second-year full-time MBA student with a passion for health system transformation.”

Hometown: Trumbull, Connecticut

Fun fact about yourself: On average, I usually prepare my meals in less than fifteen minutes.

Undergraduate School and Degree: Undergraduate: International Affairs and Biology (Gordon College)

Where was the last place you worked before enrolling in business school? Boston Medical Center (Grants Administrator)

Where did you intern during the summer of 2022? MITRE Corporation (Bedford, Massachusetts)

Where will you be working after graduation?

MITRE Corporation (Bedford Massachusetts); Health Analyst

Brown University (Health Services, Policy & Practice), Doctoral Student

Community Work and Leadership Roles in Business School:

Awards and Scholarships

Foster G. McGaw Scholar, Association of University Programs in Health Administration (2022)

Description: Endowed by the Foster G. McGaw, founder of the American Hospital Supply Corporation, recipients of this scholarship are recognized for their leadership and commitment to service within the field of healthcare administration.

Everett V. Fox Case Competition Finalist, National Association of Health Service Executives (2022)

Description: Finalist (4th place) in a scholarship program, wherein graduate students form teams to analyze and address a health-sector related case study.

Albert W. Dent Graduate Student Scholar, American College of Healthcare Executives (2022)

Description: An annual scholarship designated for racially/ethnically diverse students enrolled in a healthcare management graduate program.

Inspire Scholarship Recipient, Boston Women in Finance (2021)

Description: An annual scholarship to inspire, motivate, support, and elevate women of color in their pursuit of a career in the financial industry.

Activities

Cross-Campus Challenge Teaming Fellow

Description: The Cross-Campus Challenge (XCC) course is an interdisciplinary, project-based 4-credit elective open to undergraduate juniors and seniors. During the semester, XCC fellows teach courses on teaming, conflict resolution, and leadership.

President of Graduate Students of the African Diaspora

Description: A student-led organization aiming to bring diverse representation to Boston University Questrom School of Business and stimulate conversation about diversity, equity, and inclusion. Members of the executive board proposed a new initiative to foster professional development and mentorship opportunities for underrepresented minoritized students.

Co-Chair of the Health and Life Science Conference

Description: An annual conference to gather 250+ students and professionals to discuss the major trends in the healthcare industry.

Graduate Research Assistant for the Management and Organizations Department

Description: Reviewed and edited peer review comments on various journal articles and organized an event sponsored by the Ph.D. Project to diversify the business school pipeline,

Graduate Teaching Assistant for (HM703) Health Sector Management Issues and Opportunities

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? Cross-Campus Challenge Teaming Fellow – This opportunity sparked my interest in graduate education and mentorship. I love being able to connect with undergraduate/graduate students from across different disciplines and explore the core elements of a healthy teaming culture.

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? I am most proud of a white paper I drafted, “Rule-Making Cascades,” which aims to capture the Stakeholder’s voice in policy design and evaluation to help support the work of Veterans Health Administration’s Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers.

Why did you choose this business school? As a leader in the field of health sector management, I was drawn to Boston University’s access to industry experts and interdisciplinary culture. I was able to pursue a dual degree (MBA and MPH), which allowed me to deepen my understanding of the various factors (economic, political, and social) that affect public health ,in addition to the ways the health sector industry operates.

Who was your favorite MBA professor? It’s very hard to select one professor because they are all wonderful, but I am forever grateful to Michel Anteby, who encouraged me to think carefully and critically about various ways to predict and address challenges within/across organizations.

What was your favorite course as an MBA? Strategy, Economics, and Policy in the Health Sector – It was such a fun class! We were able to grapple with real-world issues in the healthcare sector by actively applying theoretical principles of health economics.

What was your favorite MBA event or tradition at your business school? The annual Health and Life Science Conference was my favorite event because it allows students to come to the table with managers and leaders to discuss healthcare in all its hidden forms. The conference cultivates a space for diverse thinkers and changemakers, reflecting BU’s culture of “creating value for the world.”

Looking back over your MBA experience, what is the one thing you’d do differently and why? I would take the time to get know our industry relations and career advising team more! They are a wonderful resource for students looking to broaden their understanding of ever-evolving career opportunities.

What is the biggest myth about your school? At first, I thought that the average MBA student was a “finance” professional – which is not the case at all! Students in our program come from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines (clinicians, researchers, engineers, etc.).

What did you love most about your business school’s town? Boston is truly hub for learning and a great place to interact with emerging leaders in health sector management.

What surprised you the most about business school? Two things:

1) Not everything is about return on investment from a monetary standpoint. It is also important to consider both the positive and negative externalities in making “business” decisions.

2) Time flies! We are absorbing so much information during the first year of the program (from accounting to marketing), that I was surprised how much I was able to learn and apply during my internship. Two-years goes by very quickly in the grand scheme of things!

What is one thing you did during the application process that gave you an edge at the school you chose? I took the time to meet with faculty aligned to my career and research interests. I also got to know members of the admissions team, who helped me navigate both the application and financial aid process. I made sure to always ask the question: “How do you see this program evolving over the next 10 years?”

Which MBA classmate do you most admire? Tiensae Teshome is not only a “digital marketing” savant, she is also is a great teammate. She knows how to lighten the mood, while always actively listening to others.

What are the top two items on your professional bucket list? At some point in my life, I would love to be a leader of a safety-net health system and an adjunct professor similar to the former CEO of Boston Medical Center (Kate Walsh).

What made Alexa such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2023?

“Alexa Bragg joined the Health Sector Management Program (MBA) at Boston University Questrom School of Business in August of 2021. She is curious, smart, engaged, and committed. I recall reviewing her background and thinking she was an ideal student for our program. That was an understatement.

She has embraced her studies, excelled academically, and contributed substantively to the university and Boston area community. To highlight just some, she has served in the following positions: 1. Co-Chair of the annual Health & Life Sciences conference at Questrom, an annual student run conference with about 250 attendees from around the country. 2. Teaching Assistant in “Health Sector Issues and Opportunities” MBA class (an obvious choice given her excellent grade in the class). 3. Fellow for BU Hub’s Cross-Campus Challenge (XCC). 4. President of the Graduate Students of the African Diaspora. 5. Published and presented research (see her CV).

Alexa has received some external recognition for her exceptional work: 1. Albert W. Dent Graduate Student Scholar (ACHE – American College of Healthcare Executives). 2. Foster G. McGaw Scholarship (AUPHA – Association of University Programs in Health Administration). 3. Case Competition Finalist (NAHSE – National Association of Health Service Executives).

Her humble yet powerful contributions, commitment, competence, enthusiasm, curiosity, and lived experience are deeply appreciated and admired by the class of 2023 (as well as the staff and faculty). She is not just a model MBA student, but a model citizen of any community.”

Ned Rimer
Faculty Director, Health Sector Management Program
Executive in Residence
Senior Lecturer
Boston University Questrom School of Business

DON’T MISS: THE ENTIRE LIST OF MBAS TO WATCH IN 2023

Questions about this article? Email us or leave a comment below.