The Pulitzer’s Medical Humanities program helped medical students and professionals hone their observation skills, increase their tolerance for ambiguity, and build empathy for patients and colleagues. These skills are invaluable for medical professionals, but are often overlooked in formal medical training.

The program was developed by Yoko Kiyoi, Assistant Curator of Education at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation, and collaborator Dr. Somalee Banerjee, a physician/public health researcher at the Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, California. Together, Kiyoi and Dr. Banerjee led virtual workshops drawing from exhibitions at the Pulitzer to inform discussion.

The exhibition Hannah Wilke: Art for Life’s Sake provided a perfect springboard to discuss complex topics that are often overlooked during medical training: the human body and symbolism, death and dying, the meaning of life and work, among others.