The Carey Business School, an offshoot of Johns Hopkins, has tended to be the institution’s least glamorous sister. Founded in 2007 (but with origins dating back a century before that) thanks to a $50 million donation from William Polk Carey, the freestanding school is too new to have established itself as an MBA powerhouse; instead of banking on a storied history, the program has opted to make its name through innovative programs. And now they’re revamping that system yet again.
The reorganization, announced this week, will shift the school’s focus to business as it relates to health care and the life sciences. The move seems like a smart one, both because Hopkins is such a medical powerhouse and because more and more business is happening in the health care arena. “Health care is approaching 20 percent of the national gross domestic product, and it’s a key factor in the costs of any economic model, whether in manufacturing or services,” said the school’s interim Dean Phillip Phan. “Understanding the complexities of the modern health care industry is a crucial skill for any business manager. For those who manage in the health care sector, Johns Hopkins is the place to learn.”
The change-up is certainly an overhaul, but will build on previous programs and more closely tie the business school to the university’s other departments. Starting this fall, the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine will start offering a dual MBA/MD degree with Carey, and professors from other divisions are looking into joint research efforts with the school.
So what of the much-vaunted Global MBA program, designed to “reinvent” the traditional MBA, which was launched by Carey in 2010? Well, that’ll still be an option. “This new focus doesn’t mean we’re altering other, traditional areas where we’re strong,” Phan said. “We feel strongly that the best business schools have a mix of people representing various industries, sharing their views and experiences. The intention is not to have a school full of people from just one industry.” But by branding itself as the place to go to study the business of medicine, Carey might’ve just made a smart move.