Matt Hopp, EMBA-MOT 2011, became president/co-owner of Guardian Pharmacy of Atlanta during his Executive MBA studies.
Published on: 02-20-2013
entrepreneurial skills through Georgia Tech's Executive MBA in Management of
Technology program gave Matt Hopp the confidence he needed to start his own
Ten months before
completing his MBA in December 2011, Hopp left his position as general manager
of Walgreens Long-Term Care Pharmacy to become president/co-owner of Guardian
Pharmacy of Atlanta. He found the program's New Product and Service Launch
Project particularly helpful to his own career goals.
"We had to
develop a business plan for a proposed Internet company, figuring out our
vision and finances and how to attract investors," Hopp explains. "In
a business plan competition at the end, we pitched it to entrepreneurs. The
whole process was an excellent exercise, preparing me to approach Guardian
about investing in a new branch."
Hopp, who earned
his BS in healthcare administration/gerontology at Ithaca College in 2001,
says, "It was important for Guardian to see that in addition to my work
experience, I was getting a formal education in business." Though not a
pharmacist himself, Hopp has managed pharmaceutical operations since 2005 at
not only Walgreens, but also Georgia Pharmacy Company and Pharmerica.
Technology Focus Important
is increasingly important to his industry, Hopp was drawn to Tech's 17-month Executive
MBA in Management of Technology program (a focus on Global Business is also
available). "My branch is very technology-focused," Hopp explains.
"We’ve invested heavily in online tools, medical records, and robotic
Now employing 11
people, Hopp's Guardian branch is contracting with a growing number of
assisted-living, skilled nursing, and other institutional facilities to provide
all of the medications their residents need. "We have a machine that
dispenses all the pills that residents need into multi-dose bags," Hopp
says. "A nurse might have to give meds to 50 people over two hours, so we
need a system to make that distribution as efficient as possible."
relationships with his grandparents attracted him to study gerontology and
serve the elderly. "I've always felt that's an underserved and neglected
population that deserves more attention," he says. "I think there's a
lot that we can learn from older generations."
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