Friday, April 9, 2010

Why do medical students choose the dual MD/MBA option?

Tonight, I had the chance to mingle with medical students who are currently enrolled in dual MD/MBA programs. Most of them did not apply for admission into the dual degree program. Rather, they entered the MBA option during their first or second year. My question to them was, "why?" Why did you switch into the dual-degree MD/MBA program instead of applying straight for the dual-degree MD/MBA when you were applying for medical school?

Some medical schools do not allow pre-med students to apply directly into the dual-degree program. You must demonstrate stellar performance during your first year to get accepted into the business school portion. Other schools may allow students to apply directly into the joint MD/MBA, but they also allow existing medical students to transfer into the joint MD/MBA during medical school.

If I were to look back at medical school, I doubt that I would have opted into a dual-degree MD/MBA program. I had no interest in business when I was a medical student and look at me now! I find that so many medical students really don't realize that the world of medicine is a business. The health care industry isn't just about pharmaceutical companies and health insurance companies. Hospitals and private practices all operate as businesses. Therefore, being grounded in business could make you a better physician and a better physician executive who has medical management responsibilities.

Well, I had a great time networking tonight at the opening reception for the Association of MD/MBA Programs (AMMP) 8th Annual Conference. It was great meeting students, faculty, sponsors, and others. I look forward to a full day tomorrow as we dig into some great sessions focused around career opportunities for MD/MBA graduates.

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