As the President and CEO of Planned Parenthood of New York City, Wendy Stark (MBA '02) fights for healthcare equity for all New Yorkers, a journey that began with her education at Baruch College. The Zicklin grad shares some of her favorite Baruch memories in the March Alumna of the Month feature.
What is your favorite Baruch memory?
Stark: Working on group projects with the people I teamed up with early on in my studies. We learned a lot from each other and laughed so much! Negotiating group work is a great way to prepare for or develop deeper skills for the workplace.
If we were to go back in time to an average day when you were a student, where would we find you on campus, and what would you be doing?
Stark: Perhaps running down the stairs in the Newman Vertical Campus. I was at Baruch in the days after 9/11, and every fire alarm sent us running.
Which class and professor at Baruch prepared you the most for your career today?
Stark: Nancy Aries’ class that I took the first trimester of my program–I believe it was called Introduction to American Health Care or something similar. We learned about how intentionally segregated by payer–which is often a proxy for race, wealth, and other factors–the United States healthcare system is. I was already working in a community health center, or what is known as ‘safety net’ healthcare, and my work since then has been focused on healthcare access and health equity.
What advice would you give to incoming freshmen?
Stark: Even while you are taking your studies seriously, don’t take yourself too seriously. Embrace working in groups. Include levity in your experience!
What is your proudest accomplishment since you graduated?
Stark: Working for bodily autonomy in all its forms in the face of increasing authoritarianism.