Medical & Health Humanities
The Medical and Health Humanities program applies humanistic skills— critical assessment, reflective learning, collaborative problem-solving, and effective communication—to issues in healthcare and medicine and with an emphasis on cultural, familial, philosophical, spiritual, and social factors.
But what does that mean?
It means looking at health care holistically, considering not just the physical body that aches, but the person who seeks treatment, the family and friends who support that person, and the social structures that influence the person’s care. It means asking difficult questions about health care—how is disease constructed and how does that construction impact care?—and working on solutions to ensure respect and dignity within all aspects of health care. It means making a lasting difference in the world.
Our program is for students who want to work in health care, but are either unsure of a specific career or want a foundation in a humanities discipline that will make them stand out and prepare them for a career that requires critical thinking and empathetic reasoning. Through its transdisciplinary structure and scaffolded experiential learning, our program challenges students to critically examine medicine and health care, and to apply their academic knowledge to practice in a meaningful and lasting manner that prepares students for leadership roles in health practice and research.
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- B.A. in Medical and Health Humanities
- Pre-DPT Medical and Health Humanities B.A. Degree
- Medical & Health Humanities, Pre-Law Specialization
- Minor in Medical and Health Humanities
Kevin Forsyth '18
MHH is a fantastic major. It allows students to explore the art of medicine. Students can learn about the value of a patient narrative and the concepts behind compassionate care. Additionally, it provides a space for individuals to discuss social and ethical issues in health and medicine.
Amanda Caleb, Ph.D.
Director, Medical & Health Humanities
What I enjoy most about teaching and directing MHH is the passion my students have to make a difference in health care and their desire to make human dignity the center point of all care. These are the student we should want at the forefront of health care--and they will be!
Ariel McPeek '19
Three years later, I have gone through an internship with Geisinger’s palliative department, and I am on my way to graduate school (the first in my entire family). I truly do not think that I would be in this position if it weren’t for the staff at this University and the opportunities that the MHH program has offered me.
Our Medical and Health Humanities curriculum has been made possible in part by a Humanities Connections Implementation Grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.