While marketing and finance have long been the top areas of focus within most MBA programs, entrepreneurship and non-profit management have become increasingly popular during the past decade. Prospective students often ask our admissions team for examples of successful ventures created by our alumni. Evening UST MBA alumnus Brad Slaker, who pursued an elective track in entrepreneurship, combined his background in engineering with a passion for helping children in launching non-profit medical device company DesignWise Medical.
Not long after founding his company, Slaker was profiled in the StarTribune. The article noted that despite the fact that Minnesota is a “hotbed” of medical device research in the United States, little focus had been placed on pediatric devices due to the relatively small size of the potential market. Slaker decided to rely on volunteers from the medical community as well as universities to help his vision succeed. For the past two years, he has worked with University of St. Thomas senior engineering students to help develop products.
Recently, the Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal followed up on the progress that Slaker has made at the company as it works toward bringing its first product to market. DesignWise Medical has launched a quarter-million dollar fundraising campaign to fund a permanent staff and launch new projects. Slaker is also reaching out to other medical non-profits as well as for-profit medical device companies to bring new products to market. You can learn more about DesignWise’s plans for the future at one of its upcoming Open Houses, scheduled for April 13 and May 3.
Interested in entrepreneurship, non-profit management or the medical device industry? The Opus College of Business has created a number of related resources to assist MBA students, including the Health Care/Medical Industry Interest Group, the Morrison Center for Entrepreneurship, and the Center for Nonprofit Management.