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Karen Matthews

Karen Matthews

Associate Professor of Practice
Office Location: Room - 300, Stokely Management Center 865-974-5311

Karen Matthews, a native of Baltimore, Maryland, began her academic career at the United States Naval Academy. She received a bachelor’s in electrical engineering from Morgan State University. She earned three degrees from Cornell University: a master’s in engineering, a doctorate in electrical engineering and an MBA.

Matthews is the founder and CEO of Purpose-Driven Consulting (PDC), a tailored technical business and career development services and training provider. Before founding PDC, she held senior positions in Corning Incorporated’s Science and Technology Division, most recently working in early-stage markets, innovation and disruptive technologies for the optical communications sector. She has helped to identify and help implement new growth opportunities in wired (fiber, cable and connectivity) and wireless. She continues to focus on moving concepts to commercialization, with an emphasis on agile technology transfer, digital transformation, 5G, the Internet of Things and Industry 4.0 Innovation.

Matthews has authored numerous publications and patents and is a member of several technical and professional organizations. She has served as an executive board member of Georgia Tech’s Center for the Development and Application of Internet of Things Technologies, sitting on its research work group and leading its thought leadership work group. She has been invited as keynote speaker, technical subject-matter expert, moderator, panelist, open forum discussion leader and trainer at various 5G, Internet of Things, smart manufacturing, digital transformation, technical, business and diversity conferences.


Cornell University, Ph.D., Electrical Engineering

Cornell University, M.B.A., Entrepreneurship and Global Leadership

Cornell University, M.Eng., Electrical Engineering

Morgan State University, B.S., Electrical Engineering