I recently did a quick video to share more about the Creo Quality passion:
I have decided to tell more of the CQ story in blogs and videos. Let’s start with a short story on how I got into the medical device industry.
It was late winter of 1998. Graduation from Rose-Hulman was a few months away. While I would soon have a BS in chemical engineering, the chemical engineering job market was weak at best. It was an era of the “dot com” and computer science and electrical engineering majors were in high demand. At the suggestion of a couple friends, I decided to take a couple biomedical engineering course electives. Initially I did so because, well I needed engineering electives. But I soon became enamored and interested in the course content. Seeing what engineers in the biomedical industry did on a day to day basis to improve and save lives was fascinating.
A couple friends had interviewed with and received job offers from Cook Medical and encouraged me to submit my resume. And it’s funny that despite growing up ~30 minutes from Cook’s Bloomington headquarters and going to Rose-Hulman where the football stadium was named after Bill Cook, founder of Cook Medical, I had never heard of this company. Regardless, I needed a job and Cook was hiring new engineers. I sent my resume. A couple weeks later, I was asked to come in for an interview. I felt I nailed it. I was hungry, and my excitement from the biomedical engineering classes must have been evident. The next couple weeks seemed to drag on. And then I received word that I was being offered a job.
A few months later, I started at Cook, along with two close friends. Those first few weeks were amazing. Being a 22 year old kid starting a professional career as an engineer for a medical device company was, well kind of scary. But exciting and fun at the same time. Each morning I got up easily and before an alarm clock would wake me. I enjoyed the opportunity and tried to be a sponge soaking up as much as possible. Looking back, I very much appreciate the approach Cook took with new engineers. We spent time in all production and departments within the company. Sometimes that meant I was gowned up sitting in production learning how to make catheters. It was a terribly humbling, yet invaluable, experience. The relationships I formed and lessons I learned in those first few weeks set the foundation for the rest of my career at Cook.
After a couple months of training, I was really itching for a real project. I was given a couple to start working on. I dove right in. In those days, the projects I was given were in a manila binder and file folders. And the projects had in some cases been around for a while. Let’s just say these first few projects were “back burner” projects. But it didn’t matter. I was thrilled to take ownership and make progress. My appetite grew, though. I was anxious to have a new project where I got to work directly with the physician from start to end. Soon, that day came. And my experience on this first real project was enough for me to know that I would likely spend the rest of my professional career working in the medical device industry.