Spotlight on Student Clubs at Chicago Booth: Health Care Group

Spotlight on Student Clubs at Chicago Booth: Health Care Group

Chicago Booth has a myriad of opportunities for its students to connect and contribute, and some of the coolest experiences come from the student-led groups at Booth. This week I heard from Dylan Geary, co-chair of Health Care Group (HCG), to hear all about the group this year.

To start, could you tell us what Health Care Group is?

Health Care Group is Booth’s professional club dedicated to promoting health care interests at Booth and pursuing careers in the space. Our programming has three main areas:
1) Facilitating discussions and learning through presentations with industry leaders across the various sub sectors
2) Creating opportunities for networking both with fellow students and alums through social events
3) Supporting recruiting as our members pursue careers in a variety of functions across the industry

Why did you want to be a co-chair?

I am passionate about health care and the opportunities to improve an industry that inevitably becomes personal for each of us. I saw the inefficiencies in how health care is delivered in this country and the incompatible incentives as both of my parents battled serious illnesses. 

My iPhone has a note that tracked my father’s medications because his medical record was never complete. I had to refuse an EKG being pushed onto my father despite his symptoms not fitting any sort of heart issues because hospital systems generate revenue based on quantity of care not quality of care. My mother, a lawyer who is well versed in reading the fine print, once spent nearly half a day on the phone with her health insurance company trying to understand and contest bills while undergoing cancer treatments. 

These examples are not uncommon in individual’s experiences with the health care system and historically we have looked to medical professionals to play the chief role in what are classical examples of business inefficiencies. I firmly believe that my classmates have the skill sets needed to help transform this industry and I wanted to play a small part in encouraging interest in health care careers and promoting a greater focus on these pertinent topics at Booth. 

What has been your favorite Health Care Group event so far?

This year, we hosted a social event at the University Club that we opened to alumni and students at other programs at UChicago such as the Harris School of Public Policy and the Crown School of Social Work. Being able to spend time with familiar faces and meet new students who are doing very different work, but whose interests very much align with ours, was exciting. 

What is one thing you have learned or gained from being a part of Health Care Group?

My background and interests are in digital health. Prior to Booth I worked extensively in the provider space, leaving me with a gap in understanding of the payor and pharma spaces. I specifically focused on going to events to build out my knowledge of those two segments. Attending events such as Horizon’s Lunch and Learn and our Healthcare 101 event on developing from a molecule to a medicine, taught me a great deal about the drug development and commercialization process. 

Health care is a vast industry but the components are interconnected, meaning this type of learning will benefit me in the future no matter what space I am playing in. Having access to experts across the spectrum is one of the great benefits of being a member of this group. 

What should incoming students know about Health Care Group?

Health Care Group is a great organization to be engaged in even for those with a passing interest in health care or those who simply want to learn more about the industry. Many of our members have no prior experience or knowledge of the industry and some do not go into health care immediately post-Booth, but we all are looking to learn more about the industry together.