Alumna to Speak on Leadership, Entrepreneurship, STEM
Kat Yarbrough Kuzmeskas ’07, CEO and co-founder of SimplyVital Health, Inc., will present her talk, “Thinking Outside the Box of Your Major: Leadership and Entrepreneurship in STEM,” at a Lecture on Science and Leadership sponsored by the Austin College Posey Leadership Institute and STEM Teaching and Research (STAR) Leadership program.
The lecture is November 14, at 11 a.m. in IDEA Center, Room 127, and is open to all students, staff, and faculty.
Kuzmeskas graduated with a major in psychology and a minor in biology, and served three years as a Teach for America Corps member on the Texas Rio Grande Valley. As a Corps Member, she led more than 370 seventh grade students in the nation’s fifth poorest region to the highest science exam scores in their districts. She completed a Master of Public Health degree at the University of Connecticut.
Prior to founding SimplyVital Health, Kuzmeskas was at the Yale New Haven Center for Musculoskeletal Care where, among many other roles, she managed their Bundled Payment programs. Before joining Yale, she was a strategic planner for the medicine and surgery service lines at Yale New Haven Health, and designed an enterprise-wide care management dashboard at a statewide community health center network.
Fortune Magazine named her among the 34 Leaders Who Are Changing Health Care, right after she left Yale New Haven in December 2016 to launch SimplyVital, filling an actual need she had as a hospital administrator.
In less than 10 years after graduating from Austin College, Kuzmeskas co-founded SimplyVital Health, Inc., a healthcare technology company. By leveraging blockchain technology, SimplyVital improves healthcare data accessibility. SimplyVital developed Health Nexus, an open-source healthcare-safe, HIPAA compatible blockchain protocol. She combines her liberal arts education, experience with Teach For America, Master of Public Health degree, and clinical strategic and analytic work to grow SimplyVital Health.
Austin College, a private national liberal arts college located north of Dallas in Sherman, Texas, has earned a reputation for excellence in academic preparation, international study, pre-professional foundations, leadership development, committed faculty, and hands-on, adventurous learning opportunities. One of 40 schools profiled in Loren Pope’s influential book Colleges That Change Lives, Austin College boasts a welcoming community that embraces diversity and individuality, with more than 50 percent of students identifying as persons of color. The residential student body of approximately 1,300 students and more than 100 expert faculty members allow a 13:1 student-faculty ratio and personalized attention. This year, the campus recognizes 100 years of co-education and has had several opportunities to recognize the history of women and accomplishments of current alumnae. Austin College is related by covenant to the Presbyterian Church (USA) and cultivates an inclusive atmosphere that supports students’ faith journeys regardless of religious tradition. Founded in 1849, the College is the oldest institution of higher education in Texas operating under original name and charter. –