Arts and Humanities

Keeping up with your creative side

Exposure to the arts and humanities while training to become a doctor helps foster essential skills like compassion, listening and empathy. 

Participating in artistic endeavors during med school can also help boost mental health, provide an outlet for creative energy and build camaraderie with peers. Our curriculum incorporates personal writing reflection throughout your training, for example, in our Doctoring and Healer’s Art courses. There are many more opportunities to engage with the arts and humanities while you train with us. 

Academic Opportunities

For students interested in studying medicine through an artistic lens, there are options to explore in a more formal structure.  

Medical Humanities Path of Excellence

One of the eight co-curricular, longitudinal electives students can apply to join in M1 year, the Medical Humanities Path of Excellence is focused on the connections between medicine and the humanities, and how they intersect when it comes to the patient experience and life as a physician. Students are welcome to develop their Capstone for Impact project in this Path.

Non-Traditional MSTP 

The option to apply for a PhD in the social sciences or humanities along with your MD is ideal for students looking for the flexibility to pursue exactly what they want to study. Current non-traditional MSTP students are pursuing fields as diverse as economics, philosophy and history.  

Extracurricular Opportunities

Whether you are a seasoned performer or have never made an appearance on stage, there are several ways to unleash your alter ego in front of an audience:

Auscultations

This all-medical student a cappella group puts on their own concerts in addition to performing at various events around Michigan Medicine and Ann Arbor. 


Biorhythms 

A semi-annual dance showcase that features med students from all four classes performing a variety of styles from ballroom to hip hop. No previous dance experience required. 


Life Sciences Orchestra

A symphonic orchestra featuring trainee, staff and faculty members from across Michigan Medicine. Conducted by a member of the U-M School of Music, Theatre and Dance, the LSO performs twice a year in the beautiful Hill Auditorium. 

Medical Arts Program

Our Medical Arts Program is one of only a few such programs in the country that connects students, house officers and faculty to the humanities and the arts through a series of engaging encounters with artists and performers.


Medical Arts Program Artists’ Guild Showcase

Founded by a med student as his Medical Humanities Path CFI project, each MAPAG showcase features an eclectic line-up of med student artists, musicians and dancers. Performances hosted at the Kerrytown Concert House in the fall and spring.

MedStart

Create art projects each month with the children and families at Mott Children's Hospital through the MedArt division of this student organization dedicated to the wellbeing of our pediatric patients. 


Society for History and Philosophy of Medicine

In partnership with the Center for the History of Medicine, the University of Michigan Society for History and Philosophy of Medicine is a student group engaged with the pressing issues of our time in public health, social medicine, medical humanities, medical ethics, and the history of medicine and science.


The Smoker

For more than 100 years, the Galens Smoker has been a Michigan Medical School tradition where med students take on the roles of their favorite faculty in a farcical fantasy musical performance.