Alumni Career Week: Mike Stephens

Caitlin Magidson

Caitlin works with students and alumni in Washington DC as a transformational Career Coach. She provides guidance around self-exploration, job search strategy, and networking through individualized coaching and professional development courses.

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Mike Stephens is a Consulting Associate at Sage Growth Partners, a healthcare consulting firm based in Baltimore, MD. At Sage Growth Partners, he works in a research, strategy, and project management capacity and has done work for clients such as Covidien, Boston Scientific, Wellcentive, and HeartFlow. Mr. Stephens graduated in 2010 with a BA in Psychology and Communications from Denison University and in 2014 with an MBA from the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School and an MA in Government from the Johns Hopkins University, Krieger School of Arts and Sciences.

What advice would you give new graduates?
“If you don’t ask, the answer is always no.” By that I mean unless you put yourself out there and really go for something, the answer is probably no. Whether within the context of networking, breaking into a new career, or even in your personal life, I think it is imperative to ask for and wholeheartedly pursue what you desire. That seems so obvious, but I think it can be easy to find yourself sitting on the sidelines and waiting for things to happen, instead of asking for what you desire and making things happen.

What is one thing students should do while in school to prepare for a job?
Focus on developing yourself from a holistic perspective, with the aim of becoming the best version of you. More likely than not, the specific knowledge you learn in school will have a relatively minor influence on your success at work. Instead, your success will likely be determined by your personal toolkit, which includes characteristics such as your adaptability, intellectual curiosity, drive, and interpersonal skills. So, I would focus on developing an overarching framework for success, which could include striving to always do your best and making a point of fostering meaningful connections when in social situations.

What is your favorite thing about your current job?
The intellectual challenge. Clients come to us for answers and if the answers were obvious, they presumably would address their challenges on their own. On a daily basis, my colleagues and I are tasked with coming up with creative solutions to complex problems, in an industry—healthcare—that can directly impact and improve someone’s life.

What is the most influential experience you had at Carey?
Being tasked in Leadership in Organizations with an assignment to write about where I envisioned my life going and my primary motivations. Leading up to that class, I had largely worked hard because that was what I was supposed to do and because hard work comprised my definition of success. Yet, I had given little thought to the specific reasons as to why I thought those things. Through the class assignment, I came to realize that I was actually driven to work hard because of my desire to become the best version of me, to leave a mark on the world, and to have the resources to create the personal life that I wanted.

What three words would you use to define your time at Carey?
Transformative, Stimulating, Relationships

If you’re a Carey alum, take full advantage of Alumni Career Week by visiting, signing up for a coaching appointment, and registering for the HireMaryland Alumni-Only Career Fair (6/10).

HireMaryland Alumni-Only Career Fair
June 10, 2015 | 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Notre Dame of Maryland University—MBK Gymnasium
4701 North Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21210

Click here for a full list of employers
and registration information.

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