Graduate Profiles

Katherine Cheng, LSM ‘14

Hometown: 
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
College Major: 
Biology
Wharton Concentrations: 
Finance

What have you been doing since you graduated from LSM? 

Since LSM, I have worked at Boston Consulting Group in the Chicago office for two years. I had the opportunity to work on 10 different projects, 8 of which are healthcare-related, spanning from biotech strategy to medical device sales force to big pharma corporate portfolio strategy. I learned a ton from the industry. After 2 years, I am enrolled in Harvard Business School class of 2018 as part of the 2+2 program.

How do you feel LSM helped prepare you for life after college?

LSM is a very intensive program that taught me how to prioritize my time and expand my horizons. Because it was very rigorous, I felt like I could push the envelope in my ability to learn many things simultaneously. LSM also influenced me tremendously in defining my passion for life sciences, which became a guiding post for what I want to do in my future career.

What aspects of the LSM program do you think were critical for your success?

 

Three things that were crucial for my success. 1) Senior year capstone project was instrumental. The opportunity to learn from seasoned experts and to absorb their distilled insights from years of experience is unparalleled. Being able to be hands-on in starting a healthcare start-up in college, risk-free, really gives you a leg up in the industry. 2) Classmates bonding was important. It is so refreshing to have conversations with fellow classmates who just gets it. 3) Divergent thinking, where you have to switch your brain from finance to biology in the short amount of time you walk from Huntsman to DRL. Nothing feels difficult after you have completed one of the most academic challenging programs in the United States.

What do you think you’ll be doing 5 years from now?

I don’t really make 5 years goals anymore. I used to, back in junior year I had everything planned out for the next 4 years: I was doing my summer internship at BCG, then I was going to return to BCG for 2 years, go to business school in 2 years. Everything went according to plan. However, what I realize is that a lot of opportunity comes from just talking to people, networking, and taking a risk. You really need to invest in these peripheral, indirect interactions to be as open as possible to different opportunities. It is unlikely you know exactly what you are going to do in life right after college, and there is 90% chance that things are going to change. I know what my overall mission is, and the rest I will depend on the visceral feeling I have to guide me.