The Art of HealingDecember 29, 2015
With the help of students, visionary Linda Williams brought the Art of Healing to
When considering the study of medicine, pharmacy and biomedical sciences, it’s easy
to picture microscopes, anatomy charts, chemical formulas and all things mathematical
or scientific. We imagine healthcare students hunched over physiology textbooks and
not, for instance, painting works of art or singing opera.
But even students whose future careers might be steeped in math and science often
need to express themselves through creative outlets. As such, the Art of Healing envisioned
by Biomedical Sciences Administrative Assistant Linda Williams has sprung up on the
campus of Georgia Campus – Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (GA-PCOM)
that provides a platform for students to participate in the arts and promotes a healthy
balance during their time as students.
“I had a vision of how to bring a community feeling to the campus through the arts
… and how wonderful it would be for the students to have an opportunity to interact
with faculty and administration on a different level,” said Williams. “The arts are
universal and speak to every nationality, age and gender all at the same time,” she
believes. “They are the most connecting universal language.”
The Art of Healing's Brigitte Myers (Biomed '16) and Nima Yazdanpanah (DO '18) sing
"Do You Hear What I Hear" accompanied on the piano by Dr. Richard White with assistance
from Linda Williams at the campus Holiday Luncheon.
Williams, who has an extensive background in music, established the organization with
the help of like-minded students. “The arts give me three things - psychological,
physical and spiritual health,” she explained, and, through the help of student volunteers,
she is passionate about providing students with these same life-giving facets, along
with a time for camaraderie and expression.
“The vision is to create a place where the students can experience the art form that
they enjoy during their breaks, lunch hours and even after school. They will then
be able to get to know each other better despite their varying years and programs,
which will bring even more of a sense of community and belonging to our student body
Galandou Ikpeme (PharmD '17) and Tenicia Johnson (PharmD '17) performed a duet accompanied
by Dr. Richard White.
With about 30 committed group members so far, the Art of Healing consists of singers,
musicians, artists and dancers. Brigitte Meyers and Nima Yazdanpanah, both opera singers,
pianist Daniel Kim, publicist Corey Slacks, administrator Hana Parks, dancer Aleksandra
Ignatowicz, and artist Rebecca Nowacki are some of the key students who helped Williams
get the organization off the ground. Yazdanpanah, who is versed in piano, musical
theory, composition, playing traditional Persian drums, as well as being a trained
and experienced vocalist, performed at GA-PCOM’s White Coat Ceremonies in October.
Along with Student Affairs, the organization helped design an “Art Therapy Day” which
allowed students to de-stress from the rigors of studying through arts and crafts.
The Art of Healing also provided musical and dance entertainment for the College’s
annual Holiday Luncheon. “The luncheon brought them all together. They’ve made new
friends,” Williams said. “They’re asking me – what are we doing next?”
She explained that the long term vision for the organization is to take the talents
of our students to the community in the hope of lifting spirits. She added, “This
is such an awesome opportunity to allow healthcare professionals to incorporate their
artistic talents into the gift of healing.”
Williams (center) has an extensive background in music.
About PCOM Georgia
Established in 2005, PCOM Georgia is a private, not-for-profit, accredited institute of higher education dedicated
to the healthcare professions. The Suwanee, Georgia, campus is affiliated with Philadelphia
College of Osteopathic Medicine, a premier osteopathic medical school with a storied
history. PCOM Georgia offers doctoral degrees in osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, and
physical therapy and graduate degrees in biomedical sciences, medical laboratory science,
and physician assistant studies. Emphasizing "a whole person approach to care," PCOM
Georgia focuses on educational excellence, interprofessional education and service
to the wider community. For more information, visit pcom.edu/georgia or call 678-225-7500. The campus is also home to the Georgia Osteopathic Care Center,
an osteopathic manipulative medicine clinic, which is open to the public by appointment.
For more information, visit pcomgeorgiahealth.org.
For more information, contact:
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