Ten graduates achieved a perfect 4.0 grade point average, earning the status of Class of 2013 Valedictorian. In addition, these 10 graduates were awarded the Hotchkiss Scholar designation, an academic honor recognizing exceptional achievement that is awarded to the top 5% of each graduating class. Founded by LFGSM in 1984, this honorary society was named for Dr. Eugene Hotchkiss III, President Emeritus of Lake Forest College and an active member of the LFGSM Board of Directors for nearly 20 years.
Among the Class of 2013 Valedictorians is Dr. Kaitlin Browman, who gave the Valedictory Address. In her remarks, Browman described asking her boss for approval to pursue her MBA in 2005. As a scientist in the corporate world and a self-confessed “lab rat,” Browman was rising through the ranks but knew she needed more business savvy to complement her functional expertise and get her ideas heard. The response was “a resounding no.” Several years and a promotion later, her new manager finally approved the request. Ultimately, she chose LFGSM because of the MBA curriculum’s “broad and practical” focus.
Browman singled out LFGSM faculty Corinne Miller’s Executive Success Skills course for providing breakthrough feedback and support she needed to become a more effective communicator and leader. “You gave me a place to learn how to take risk,” she declared. “You gave us a place to try, fail, and ultimately turn that failure into success.”
A few days prior to graduation, the former supervisor who had turned down Browman’s first MBA request stopped her in the hallway at work to praise her for pursuing the degree. As a result of her Lake Forest MBA, she told the audience, “I am now a recognized change agent at work.”
Browman received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of California, Santa Cruz before pursuing a Ph.D. in Psychobiology from the University of Michigan. She was a postdoctoral fellow at Oregon Health Sciences University and is currently Associate Director in the Discovery Strategic Portfolio Management area at AbbVie.