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MCS Independent Learning Opportunities

 Independent Learning Opportunities allow you to take advantage of the many learning experiences that are part of a teaching hospital.  These include, but are not limited to: Grand Rounds on Humanitarian, Social, and Ethical Issues in Medicine; Colloquia sponsored by the Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care, and Bioethics; Student interest group presentations. 

You must attend at least three sessions during the course and you must vary the type of sessions you attend.  At least one ILO must be chosen from the first list below,  Events at the  Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care, and Bioethics.

For each session you will keep a written reflection which you can compile and upload to your section faculty.  The series of three must be completed by last day of class in May of your first academic year.  You faculty will also use these to provide additional comments on your interest in Ethics and Humanities.

Obtaining Credit for ILO’s completed

To obtain Credit for an ILO you must attend the event, write a reflection, and upload it to your MCS faculty leaders within one week following the event. 

Reflection Guide:

  • Your reflection should be a single page.
  • Begin by describing the event. Topic, Date, Presenter.   Remember that your faculty mentor will not have been at the event.  The main part of the reflection should deal with your reaction to the experience, its relevance to you as a physician, and its connection to humanities and ethics.

  Upcoming ILO Events at the Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care, and Bioethics

Date Time Topic Event Flyer
Thursday, Aug. 26, 2021 4:30pm- 6:00pm

From Looking to Seeing: Perception and the Arts
The Self Depicted: Master of Self-Portraiture, from Rembrandt and Durer to van Gogh and Picasso
Vincent de Luise, MD

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Thursday, Sept. 16, 2021 4:30pm- 6:00pm

The Art and Science of Compassion
Agnes Wong, MD, PhD, FRCSC

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Thursday, Sept. 30, 2021 4:30pm- 6:00pm

The Last Breath: TB in Opera and Culture
Salvatore Mangione, MD

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Thursday, Oct. 14, 2021 4:30pm- 5:30pm

Perpetrators, Victims, and Resisters: Medical Eponyms from the Nazi Era
Lester Paldy

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Thursday, Oct. 28, 2021 4:30pm- 6:00pm

From Looking to Seeing: Perception and the Arts
Blindsight: Creativity and Visual Loss in the masterworks of Turner, Cassatt, Monet, DeGas, Goya and O'Keefe
Vincent de Luise, MD

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Thursday, Nov. 4, 2021 4:30pm- 6:00pm

The Neuroscience and Neuroaesthetics of Creativity and the Artist Mind
Suzanne Nalbantian, PhD & Vincent de Luise, MD

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Thursday, Nov. 18, 2021 4:30pm- 6:00pm Rembrandt's Empathy
Salvatore Mangione, MD
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Thursday, Dec. 2, 2021 4:30pm- 6:00pm American Dementia: Brain Health in an Unhealthy Society
Daniel R. George, PhD, MSc & Peter J. Whitehouse, MD-PhD
Learn More

 For more information visit Center Events

Other upcoming ILO Events

Date Time Topic Event Flyer
Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2021 7:00pm Stony Brook Program in Public Health Presents: The Flu and COVID: A Conversation with Your County Health Comissioner Learn More

Sunday, Nov. 21, 2021- Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2021


Monday, Nov. 22 & Tuesday, Nov. 23

View on Demand


7- 8:30pm

Film Screening "Black Men in White Coats"


Panel Discussion "Black Men in White Coats"

Learn More


HSC Events and Student Interest Events

  1. HSC and Hospital Grand Rounds are always approved if they are on the level that is eligible for CME credit and are on the MCS topic realm:  Medical Humanities and Bioethics.
  2. Presentations in Student Interest Groups and other events organized locally can be eligible for ILO credit provided thay are approved for this by the Course Director.  Students will generally publicize these events to the class and will indicate that it is an approved event.

Community Service Projects

In MCS it is possible to complete 1 ILO by participating in a community service project which meets the following criteria.


  1. The project must be mentored by a SUNY SOM Faculty Member and must be an activity of the School and/or University. (It must be a Stony Brook Activity)
  2. The nature of the service must be patient centered and humanitarian in nature. So, for example, it would not be community service to tutor your classmates or organize notes or study guides for a course.
  3. The project must be organized and generally involve 3 or more members of your class. This requirement is important as it is a LCME touchstone for service learning.)
  4. The service must take place on at least 3 occasions and involve at least 6 hours of service cumulatively.
  5. The service must take place in the first 9 months of Phase 1 – between September 1 and the last meeting of MCS before the summer break in May.
  6. The mentor must agree to receive a reflection journal form you and provide a note to your section faculty that you have completed the work. The mentor may include a short paragraph concerning your participation
  7. Some examples of excellent and approved projects:
    1. Magic Aid
    2. SB Home (our free clinic)
    3. Smile Buddies / Healthy Kids
  8. Some examples of activities that are not eligible
    1. Health Fairs (screenings or one day information sessions)
    2. Giving tours of the med school and similar ambassador programs