17 Sep 2008
Harvard Business School Names New Life Sciences Fellows
Merit-Based Program Supports Students with Outstanding Achievements and Aspirations in Healthcare and Science-Based Businesses
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BOSTON — Harvard Business School (HBS) announced today the first winners of its Life Sciences Fellowships. The Fellowship Program, established by the School in January 2008, awards $20,000 each to ten incoming MBA students with outstanding credentials from various disciplines in the life sciences. The annual merit-based Fellowships focus specifically on students interested in careers in life science-related businesses or organizations

The HBS Life Sciences Fellowship Program complements Harvard University's expanding efforts in the healthcare sector. For example, the University recently began construction of a new half-million-square-foot research and educational center near the HBS campus. This state-of-the-art facility will strengthen and expand collaboration among both HBS professors and faculty across the entire University to help address critical issues in biotechnology, healthcare, and related areas.

As part of its increasing focus on healthcare, in 2005 Harvard Business School established the Healthcare Initiative to serve as a gateway for healthcare research, educational programs, and collaboration. Priority is placed on applying the best principles of performance management and innovation to this complex industry. Through this Initiative, HBS strives to educate leaders in this field who will have an immediate and long-lasting impact.

"The synergy between business and the life sciences is of great interest and importance to both Harvard University and Harvard Business School," said Deirdre Leopold, Managing Director of MBA Admissions and Financial Aid. "The Life Sciences Fellowship Fund exemplifies the School's ongoing commitment to leveraging its academic strengths and resources to address the growing need for management and leadership skills in the healthcare professions." In addition, the Fellowship Program raises prospective students' awareness of the myriad opportunities and options made possible by an MBA degree.

The following members of the MBA Class of 2010 have received Life Sciences Fellowships:

  • Mike Derse comes to HBS with eight years of experience in engineering research and medical devices. Most recently, he worked at Aqueduct Medical, where he managed the development and release of a product that reduces pain, swelling, and recovery time after cosmetic and other types of surgery. During a fellowship at Stanford, where he earned a master's and bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering, he invented a method for bonding thin film plastics used in drug delivery. After receiving his MBA degree from HBS, he aims to start a medical device company.

  • Shawn Anthony is in the fourth year of Harvard's joint MD/MBA program. As an undergraduate at Northwestern University, he worked on innovative nanotechnology applications in medicine, including nanofiber gels for stem cell delivery and tissue regeneration. He has conducted clinical research at Boston's Brigham and Women's Hospital, where he evaluated the performance of orthopedic implants and the cost-effectiveness of a diabetes management service for critically ill patients. He recently completed a management internship at Massachusetts General Hospital, where he developed strategies to improve healthcare delivery. He plans to use his interdisciplinary background in engineering, medicine, and business to pursue roles as a physician and healthcare entrepreneur.

  • Christian Hordo conducted brain tumor research at the Hospital for Sick Children as a graduate student in the Department of Medical Genetics and Microbiology at the University of Toronto. His work improved understanding of the fate of neural cells during brain tumor formation and offered potential insights for the development of future targeted cancer therapies. As an undergraduate at McGill University, he was an honors researcher at the Montreal Neurological Institute, investigating areas such as genetic mapping and brain development during infancy. He plans to work in biotechnology management or venture capital, assessing the potential of therapeutics in oncology and related fields.

  • Before entering HBS, Karthik Ranganathan was a research scientist at PocketSonics, Inc., where he played a leading role in developing an inexpensive and portable diagnostic ultrasound imaging system. While at the company, he also was a visiting research scientist in the University of Virginia's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Before joining PocketSonics, he earned a doctorate in biomedical engineering from the University of Virginia. After receiving his MBA, Ranganathan would like to gain business experience at a healthcare-related firm and, ultimately, establish a venture to develop affordable solutions to pressing problems in healthcare.

  • Tara Dunn has been immersed in healthcare and science for the past 11 years. She graduated cum laude in biology from Harvard University, then earned a master's degree in drug regulatory affairs and health policy from the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. She most recently worked in the healthcare strategy consulting and medical device industries. As manager of clinical and regulatory affairs at InfraReDx, Inc., from 2002 to 2005 she played a key role in obtaining first authorization for the company to sell its innovative coronary catheter in the United States.

  • Alok Sathaye spent the last two years as a healthcare strategy consultant at Heath Advances, helping develop strategies to bring early-stage technologies in medical imaging, medical devices, and pharmaceuticals to market. Previously, he was a senior research scientist at Guidant and Boston Scientific, where he helped develop features for new pacemaker and implantable defibrillator devices through preclinical and clinical studies. He has coauthored numerous articles in major cardiology journals, and filed many patents for device-based medical therapies in the United States and Europe. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in biomedical engineering from the Johns Hopkins University.

  • Madhav Vasanthavada worked for more than four years in research and development at Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation. One of his major contributions was to develop and implement an innovative manufacturing technology that helped Novartis launch a new treatment for patients with type 2 diabetes. With a Ph.D in pharmaceutical sciences from the University of Rhode Island, he has published articles in scientific publications, filed patents for novel approaches to drug product development, and delivered invited presentations at pharmaceutical conferences. His career goal is to leverage his scientific and business leadership skills to drive pharmaceutical innovation.

  • James McNally has focused on the biomedical optics field-namely, the use of light in medical diagnostic and therapeutic applications. Prior to HBS, he worked at Boston Scientific, developing endoscopic imaging systems for gastrointestinal and urological medical devices. He most recently was involved in the formation of a start-up commercializing an optics-based cancer therapy system. McNally earned an M.S. in optical sciences from the University of Arizona, where he researched the development of advanced imaging and spectroscopy tools for the study of cancer and heart disease. He graduated magna cum laude in electrical engineering from Princeton University.

  • Sean Murray worked as a design engineer on a promising new surgical suction device at orthopedic manufacturer Stryker Corporation, where his research and development team was recognized as the company's best in 2007. At Stryker, he also led a design team that produced a line of patent-pending disposable manifolds. Murray graduated as valedictorian of the University of New Mexico's School of Engineering, and was one of 77 students in the United States awarded a Truman Scholarship in 2004 for leadership potential. He hopes to pursue a general management career in medical devices and biotechnology upon graduation.

  • Ray Liu earned his master's degree from the University of California, Berkeley, while conducting advanced research in DNA sensing to detect genetic and parasitic diseases. Before entering HBS, he worked at GE Healthcare, with roles in research, engineering, and project management. He spent the past two years in China, helping develop a global quality management system for the company's new rural markets business, which provides vital-sign monitors for patients in developing countries. He plans to continue working in global healthcare development, focusing his HBS studies on international business and social enterprise.

  • Antonio Perez is a Harvard MD/MBA joint-degree candidate. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Harvard College, he most recently finished a clinical year at Massachusetts General Hospital, where he had previously completed a management internship in the office of the hospital's president. His published research has focused on developing stem cell therapies for muscle diseases such as muscular dystrophy. A former Paul and Daisy Soros Fellow and Howard Hughes Medical Institute research fellow, he is interested in pursuing cardiology and healthcare administration. Ultimately, he aims to serve as president of a leading academic hospital system.

About Harvard Business School

Founded in 1908 as part of Harvard University, Harvard Business School is located on a 40-acre campus in Boston. Its faculty of more than 200 offers full-time​ programs leading to the MBA and doctoral degrees, as well as more than 80 open enrollment Executive Education programs and more than 60 custom programs. For more than a century, HBS faculty have drawn on their research, their experience in working with organizations worldwide, and their passion for teaching to educate leaders who have shaped the practice of business and entrepreneurship around the globe.​​​​