Three-peat! Johns Hopkins Wins the Sixth Annual Wake Forest Biotech Competition

For the third year in a row, students from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Carey School of Business won the $10,000 first prize at the Wake Forest University Healthcare Strategy Conference and Case Competition.

The JHU team was multidisciplinary, made up of:

  • Steven Wang, a PhD student in the Cellular and Molecular Medicine program
  • Basil Hussain, a PhD student in the Dept. of Molecular Biology and Genetics
  • Tim Xu, a 3rd year MD student
  • Christopher Bailey, 4th year MD student who will continue his training in Radiology at Johns Hopkins Hospital
  • Christopher “Kitt” Burch, a graduating MBA student at the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School

Other schools that took part in the fifth annual competition, held in late March, were Wake Forest (winner of $5,000 for second place), Cornell (winner of the $2,000 third-place prize), MIT (winner of $1000 for most creative), and North Carolina State (winner of $1000 for most innovative). Other participants included Boston University, University of Maryland, University of Texas at Dallas, Tufts, and Rutgers.

Students were challenged to create a plan to grow a smaller division of the Boston Scientific portfolio to the size and influence of their high earning divisions such as interventional cardiology and gastrointestinal endoscopy. Each team was given a week to develop their plans and prepare a 20-minute oral presentation and written executive summary. Three Boston Scientific executives judged the students’ presentations and written work to determine which plan was the most comprehensive, realistic, and in line with the goals of the Boston Scientific brand.

Steven Wang believed that the team benefitted by their diverse backgrounds in medicine, which allowed them to understand Boston Scientific’s device portfolio and the patient populations they are meant to help: “We didn’t always agree, but in the end, it wasn’t about who’s right or who’s wrong, but what’s right and what’s wrong. That really helped us to succeed.”

Basil Hussain stated, “After our presentation our confidence was definitely shaken. The judges’ questions were challenging and very detailed making it difficult for us to accurately assess their perception of our performance. In the end, we were obviously thrilled with the result which we worked hard to achieve.”

Christopher Bailey added, “The judges were particularly impressed with our understanding of the device space in question. This made us stand out amongst our competition.”

Tim Xu added, “One of the judges told us we were the only team he would put in front of his board.”

Kitt Burch summed up the experience: “Ultimately, this was a business case competition. We were fortunate in that our team brought different experiences to the table, which allowed us to better understand the technology, customers, and markets involved. I’m proud to have been involved with these guys, and to bring the award back to Hopkins for a third year in a row.”




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