Why MDs Seek MBAs

Nearly every year, between one to four doctors come to Haas to complement their medical training with a business education from the school’s Evening & Weekend MBA and Berkeley-Columbia Executive MBA programs.

Thirteen doctors have graduated from the Berkeley-Columbia Program since its inception in 2002, and 13 doctors have graduated from the Evening & Weekend Program since 2003, the first year the program began keeping such records.

Read on to learn why three of those 26 MDs pursued an MBA:


Elise Singer, MBA 10, Chief Medical Officer, California Health Information Partnership and Services Organization, Oakland, Calif.  Several years out of medical school, Singer found that her career had shifted into administration, overseeing the transition to electronic health records at Cooper University Hospital in Camden, N.J. “I went into the accountant’s office and asked, ‘How do you do a spreadsheet?’” she says. “I realized I didn’t know anything that wasn’t health care.” Now, with her MBA, she says, “I have much more of an idea of how to operate. I know how to be innovative.”

Daniel Pine, MBA 02, Emergency Room Physician, Kaiser Permanente, Vallejo, Calif.  Pine became interested in running businesses on the side while working in medicine. Since graduating from Haas, he has invested in real estate, grape growing, and wine. “My degree has returned the tuition dollars many times over in fun and breadth of work life,” he says.

Michael Black, MBA 08, Medical Director, Pediatric and Congenital Open Heart Program, Children’s Hospital at St. Mary’s, West Palm Beach, Fla.  A desire to take his medical innovations to the market led Black to Haas. “I’m very entrepreneurial and have patented many devices, but I was ineffective in getting them launched,” says Black. Since earning his MBA, Black has formed new biomedical companies and is pursuing funding and clinical trials. “I’m much better at it,” he says, adding modestly, “but I’m not a brilliant businessman yet.”




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