By Dr. Patrick Marcus, Marcus Engineering, LLC, McGuire Program, Biomedical Engineering, ’06
My post-graduate experience has been a whirlwind of opportunity, challenge, reward and frustration. Every success, failure and experience feeds the richness of character and foundation of knowledge that I have today.
Breadth of education, both academic and industrial, has been the real power in my career. I graduated from U of A with a BS in Electrical Engineering in 1999 and finished my doctorate in Biomedical Engineering (focusing on neuroscience and neuroprosthetics) in 2006. I also graduated from the McGuire Entrepreneurship program in 2006, meaning that, unlike most engineers, I could actually combine a practical perspective on how to launch and run a business with my scientific and engineering knowledge.
Upon graduation I took a position as a director in the small solar startup where I’d worked part time throughout my graduate education. The startup, and my personal business and engineering knowledge, grew successfully for the next several years. In 2008 I spun off a related electronics manufacturing company specializing in power supplies (also for solar manufacturing). I ran that organization for several years, growing it from 2 people up to a healthy group of development, operations, and manufacturing personnel. During those years I supplemented what I’d learned at U of A with practical experience and knowledge as I designed circuits, programmed industrial machinery, wrote business plans, scoured contracts, solicited venture capital, led legions of employees, delved into the cellular structure of neurons, published research, restructured marketing, hired, fired, and watched my companies grow and shrink through good times and bad.
But something was at eating me during those years in the solar business. I had expanded my ability to grow and run technical organizations but I wasn’t leveraging my education. My passion for biomedical engineering and neuroscience—medical device and medical instrumentation development—was constantly nudging me to reassert my expertise in the field in which I’d earned my Ph.D. It was time to take all I had learned and apply it to yet another challenge and yet another opportunity for personal growth.
In early 2011 I decided to get out of the solar manufacturing equipment business. I sold my shares in the companies I had helped lead, and in mid-2011 I launched my electronics product development company, Marcus Engineering, LLC, with the goal of focusing on medical device and medical instrumentation development. The venture immediately presented a new set of challenges: The disparate array of sales efforts, varying customers and product applications, and navigating the complex FDA regulations is only the beginning. I’m now in an invigorating next phase of entrepreneurship and business development. I am STOKED!
Dr. Patrick Marcus is the president of Marcus Engineering, LLC which offers advanced technological design services including: Embedded Systems Design, PCB Layout, Product Development, Analog and Power Electronics design, and Industrial Controls and Automation. Dr. Marcus also designs interactive public art sculptures, sits on an advisory board for the University of Arizona College of Engineering, is a member of the Southern Arizona Leadership Council, is a fellow of the Flinn / Brown Arizona Civic Leadership Academy, and volunteers his time to the Arizona Bioindustry Association, Arizona Technology Council, Arizona Optics Industry Association, and local STEM (Science Technology Education and Math) programs.