Meet the MBA Class of 2025: Medha Sharma, Wharton School

Medha Sharma

Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania / Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania (Dual degree MD/MBA)

“Aspiring physician-innovator passionate about the intersection of business and medicine.”

Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA (though I was born in London and spent my early years in England)

Fun Fact About Yourself: I was a cast member and writer in an all-female sketch comedy troupe in college. If I couldn’t work in healthcare, my dream career would be hosting a late-night comedy talk show!

Undergraduate School and Major: University of Pennsylvania – Biology Major, Healthcare Management Minor

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: ClearView Healthcare Partners – Senior Analyst

What has been your first impression of the Wharton MBA students and alumni you’ve met so far. Tell us your best Wharton story so far. Openness. Though people may assume that the business world is full of superficial interactions, I’ve found Wharton to be far from surface-level. Our very first class assignment was to open up and share a personal story with our learning teammates. Outside of class, even from initial conversations, I’ve found everyone I’ve met to be genuinely excited to share their stories and forge meaningful connections.

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of the Wharton School’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? Wharton was my dream MBA program due to its unique five-year MD/MBA dual degree and Healthcare Management Program. To me, giving patients back their health gives them a second chance at life, a mission that initially drew me to work in healthcare. My classmates in the Healthcare Management Program hold a similar mentality that has empowered them to achieve amazing things. It is so inspiring to be surrounded by so many brilliant, creative, and kind people who are passionate about building a healthier world.

What course, club, or activity excites you the most at the Wharton School? I am really looking forward to participating in a Wharton Leadership Venture, particularly the sailing trips to the British Virgin Islands and New Zealand. I want to spend as much time as I can this year trying new experiences and sailing is one that I’ve admired from afar for a long time!

When you think of the Wharton School, what is the first word that comes to mind? Why? Diverse. In just my first week at Wharton, I have met people from Cambridge, MA and Cambridge, England, the country of Georgia and the state of Georgia. I’ve loved hearing about classmates’ lives before Wharton, from their time in the navy to their music career – and I can’t wait to learn more about them!

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Most of one’s health outcomes are influenced by the social determinants of health (SDOH), non-medical factors such as education and economic stability that are frustratingly beyond the power of healthcare providers to improve. Since starting medical school, I joined the investment committee for the Penn Medicine and Wharton Fund for Health, a venture fund that invests in startups working to improve SDOH. Two of the startups I sourced — one in the addiction recovery space and another working to reduce chronic absenteeism in schools – were among the fund’s first portfolio companies. I was so moved by these founders and their mission that I co-founded a Social Determinants of Health Accelerator through my medical school, funding medical students to work as consultants for SDOH-focused startups. The accelerator’s impact is bidirectional – exposing early-stage startups to clinical perspectives while teaching medical students about social determinants of health resources that they can connect future patients with.

What do you hope to do after graduation (at this point)? When I graduate with my MD/MBA, I plan to complete a medical residency. Afterwards, my career aim is to split my time between practicing medicine and impacting patients on a wider scale, either through biotech/pharma or healthcare delivery innovation. I am so excited for Wharton’s Healthcare Management program to introduce me to a wide array of career paths and guide me to find my niche within healthcare innovation.

What is one thing you have recently read, watched, or listened to that you would highly recommend to prospective MBAs? Why? Why We Sleep by Dr. Matthew Walker. Having a world of opportunities at my fingertips at all hours of the day has left me eager to do as much as I can in my short time at Wharton. I am also very guilty of experiencing FOMO (the fear of missing out!) However, I’ve realized that I won’t enjoy or get as much out of activities if I am not well rested. Though the mentality “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” is rampant (and often glamorized) in today’s work culture, the data presented in Dr. Walker’s book reaffirmed to me the importance of keeping an eye on one’s health and the vital role sleep plays in maintaining health.

What other MBA programs did you apply to? None – just Wharton.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into the Wharton School’s MBA program? Try to shed your imposter syndrome! Everyone has an incredible life journey that brought them to where they are today. Reflect on yours, highlight your authentic self through your applications, and show the admissions committee what unique perspectives you bring to the table.

If you start thinking about Wharton early and want to build out more experiences in a specific career area before applying, connect early on with Wharton alumni and current students whose interests align with yours. Ask them what opportunities they found to be most useful in their path to business school – I promise that they will go above and beyond to help!

DON’T MISS: MEET WHARTON’S MBA CLASS OF 2025

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