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Graphic Storytelling & Medical Narratives

A collection of graphic stories by fourth-year medical students at Penn State College of Medicine

Since 2009, fourth-year medical students at Penn State College of Medicine have created comics as part of a course called “Graphic Storytelling and Medical Narratives.” The course was developed to show fourth-year medical students how graphics and text can be used to effectively communicate complex medical narratives, and to help students develop their own stories into graphic depictions.

Taught seminar-style, the course requirements are minimal: participate in all classroom activities, be good colleagues to one another, and produce a short, original, graphic narrative, or comic.

Of course not all medical students are naturally gifted writers or artists, but as one can see from the following pages, everyone can tell stories and everyone can draw pictures. While this course is unlike any other in their medical school experience, the students rise to the task, sharing their reflections on becoming a doctor with honesty, wit, and creativity.

Michael Green, MD, MS, FACP
Course Director, Professor of Humanities and Medicine

Enjoy the following Graphic Storytelling and Medical Narratives by the medical students of 2014! (Click on the students name below to view their individual stories).

2014 Graphic Narratives 

Alex Burton • The Test Cycle

Pelumi Adedayo • Listen Up!

Sam de los Reyes • 36 Weeks

Mirza Baig • Intu-Whatt??: An Anesthesia Tale

Jordan Humphrey • Faces

Richard Tangel • Fear of the Unknown

Eugene Won • 21 Years Old

Shane Lavin • Whatever Floats Your Boat


2013 Graphic Narratives

Perspective    by: Trey Banbury

Great Expectations  by: Jonathan Gandhi

Being a Patient Made Me a Better (Future) Doctor  by: Jason Holmes

Medicine  by: Matt Klocek

Spoiled Milk  by: Megan Klocek

My Dream Vacation  by: Jessica Walrath

HMC Safari Adventure  by: Noelle Whyte


Archived Student Graphic Narratives

 2009  2010  2011 2012
 Marlana Orloff
 I Never Learned
This During Island
 Ashley Pistorio
 Vita Perseverat
 Annie Park
She Wolf: How Lupus
Changed My Heart
 Taylor Olmsted
The Taming of Tina
 Dawn Flosnik
 The Match
 Erin Murata
 Labor of Love
 Arash Salavitabar
New Hope in Ecuador
 Sara Farag
The Game of Life
 Kathy Marshall
 Orange You Glad I Didn’t
Say Heart Attack?
 Justin Zelones
 My Babies Cleft
 Emmanuel Yacoub
August 2009-
Pediatric Clerkship
 Ryan Svoboda
Medical Ethics 101
 Lindsey McCormick
 A Quiet Night
 Jordan Lichty
 Katee Beaudry
 Cherry Pie
 Albert Cheung
Travel to Peru
 Adrian Ionescu
 Scrubbed In
 Godfrey Thuku
 Beware of Your
Hospital Visitors!
 Kavita Vakharia
 Tales from the Trail
 Brian Sykes
 Safe at Home
 Wilson Almonte and
Romita Rupani
 Michael Pitzer
 Medical Student:
A Tragic Comedy
 Kie Lee
 My First Big Case
 Sarah Marie Lucking
 How a Green Chili
Almost Killed Aunt Cindy
 Christian Squillante
 Shilpa Sawardekar
Based on a True Story
 Mary Anne Carrillo
 Life Lessons of
the O.R.
  Jeff Monk
A Ghost of an Idea
 Damian Dyckman
 Defending a Dream
 Sasha Svendsen
Close, But No Champagne
 Nikkole Haines
 A Call to Prayer
 Jonathan Chu
Case Files:
Medical Humanities
 Diana Minto
 The Short White Coat
 Stamatis Zeris
The Psychiatry Residency
Interview Trail
 Tic Toc
 Ken Montini
 Yvonne Tsui
 Adventures in
the O.R.
 Lisa Michelle DePuzzo
 Medical School Made
Me a Doctor
 Michael Albin
 Nikhil Patel
 Tasha Kouvatsos
 The Game of Life































Articles about the storytelling class:

Click on the links below to download PDFs of individual articles
Beyond Superheroes: Comics as a New Genre for Medical Storytelling
Article in Lancaster Intelligencer Journal
CMAJ 2012 epub September 17
PODCAST– Conversation with Michael Green, M.D., M.S.

Other Resources on Graphic Medicine:

Click on the links below to access other resources
Graphic Medicine Webpage
Article in BMJ



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