Health care at Wharton. To some, that subject is synonymous with medicine, with science, with innovation. But we’re not just doctors and former pre-med students (although there are plenty of those here). We’re a thriving, multifaceted community on a mission to make a positive, lasting impact on the U.S.  health-care system and to make high-quality patient care affordable and accessible to all.

Health care in America has been described by the New York Times as “impoverishing,” “soul-crushing,” and “exorbitant,” to cite just a few adjectives that sum up a system intended to keep our nation’s population healthy and productive. At Wharton, we don’t buy into that. In fact, the Wharton Health Care Club (HCC) is full of students who are relentlessly motivated to steer the Titanic that is the U.S. health system away from those descriptors and toward the promise of something “innovative,” “affordable,” and perhaps even “pleasant.”

If nothing else, the U.S. health-care system is highly multidisciplinary and nuanced, and HCC at Wharton is the same. The club seeks to represent diverse stakeholders from across the care continuum — insurance companies, provider groups, biopharma, digital health, public-health leadership, etc. — through forums ranging from career treks to New York City to the Wharton Health Care Business Conference, the largest student-run conference at the School, which returns for its 29th annual edition in February. We partner with peer groups like Digital Health Club, FemTech Club, and others to foster dialogue about novel approaches to health-care delivery through lunch-and-learns and small group dinners. HCC alumni have gone on to lead Beam Therapeutics, PatientPing, KKR Health Care, MassHealth, and more.

But aside from our mission, if you ask anyone in the club what the defining characteristic of HCC is, they’ll undoubtedly say “community.” In part due to the mission and career aspirations that bind us, HCC travels together, volunteers together, and celebrates together. Whether we’re brainstorming a new startup, consulting for local biotechs, or even shutting down local Wharton watering holes, the Health Care Club is a place where all are welcome.

If you are at all frustrated about the current state of our health-care system and would like to join a cohesive community with which to commiserate, ideate, and drive change, look no further than HCC. We’d love our club to grow faster than health insurance premiums.


Published as “Doing Well (and Getting Well) by Doing Good” in the Fall/Winter 2022 issue of  Wharton Magazine.