“The Soul of Medicine,” a special course offered through the new Medical Humanities program, is the most enjoyable and impactful class that I have enrolled in throughout my college experience in Oregon State University’s Honors College. Notwithstanding the vast amount of core science classes I have taken, no other program has been tailored to my specific interests and passion for medicine. Through the intellectually stimulating discussions and explorations into the heart and driving force that it takes to be a physician provided by medical humanities courses, I have not only grown as a student and a person, but I truly feel that I have developed critical thinking skills and the compassion required of me as a future physician.
This program has sparked my interest in issues that face all medical professionals, and I am more thoroughly prepared for my journey to medical school and my future career.
- Morgan Prince, OSU pre-medical student, 2011 graduation.
As a pre-med student, many of my classes consisted of memorizing concepts and formulas for calculation, where there is only ONE correct answer for a problem. This makes us think in a closed-minded, sequential way, which works for a chemistry lab paper or a physics exam. What is different in the medical humanities is that things are not so black and white: when issues of ethics, or historical or textual interpretation, are involved, many times there is no ONE correct answer. My participation in courses in the medical humanities, such as biomedical ethics, presented me with a wider spectrum of questions and possibilities, some of which I never considered before. These courses offer students in the health care professions an opportunity to learn how to think deeper, with flexibility and an open mind, and to approach situations with patients from every possible angle, making sure that all options have been covered and evaluated. As a healthcare professional, these are indispensable skills to have in the constant quest to providing individualized care tailored to the different physical and psychological needs of every patient. (Yuko Iwanaga, OSU 2009, nurse in Lebanon)
The Medical Humanities Certificate has taught me that being a physician requires much more than a scientific background. The courses offered ask students to critically analyze the skills required of a successful physician and teach students that patient health care is individualized and personal. One of the most important ideas the classes examine is why we practice medicine the way we do in hopes to enhance patient care. The Medical Humanities program and incorporated classes truly inspire and motivate students to pursue a medical profession.
- Lindsay Wagner, OSU 2012
Lindsey is now attending the University of Western States Doctors of Chiropractic program to study both alternative and integrated health care.