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Current Students

Mary Carol Barks

Headshot of Mary Carol Barks

Master’s Student, Concentration in Literature, Medicine, and Culture

Mary Carol Barks holds a B.A. from Auburn University where she studied English Literature with an interest in the medical humanities and multidisciplinary research. While doing coursework at UNC Chapel Hill, Mary Carol is an Associate in Research at Duke University’s Margolis Center for Health Policy where she studies doctor-patient communication and shared decision-making, particularly when patients experience life-threatening illness. Mary Carol hopes to continue this line of research, helping clinicians guide their patients through challenging treatment decisions that effectively coincide with each patient’s values, goals, and life as a whole.

Savannah Bateman

Master’s Student, Concentration in Literature, Medicine, and Culture

Savannah is an M.A. student at UNC with a concentration in Literature, Medicine, and Culture. She is from the small town of Kitty Hawk, located on the Outer Banks, NC. She earned her B.A. in English Literature with two minors in biology and chemistry from Western Carolina University. As an undergraduate, she was primarily interested in interdisciplinary research and medicine. She has a work history in emergency medical Services and medical transportation services, which primarily drives her research interests in the health humanities, focusing on bibliotherapeutic techniques in chaotic work environments, trauma theory, and rhetorical analysis of the metaphorical language in EMS provider personal narratives.

Jenna Gordon

Headshot of Jenna GordonMaster’s Student, Concentration in Literature, Medicine, and Culture



Rabab Husain

Master’s Student, Concentration in Literature, Medicine, and Culture

Rabab holds a B.S in Psychology from UNC Chapel Hill, where she also studied English Literature and completed pre-med courses. While writing papers on the impact of literature on empathy and Theory of Mind for her psychology courses, she found herself interested in the application of the humanities towards the medical field. Returning to UNC as an M.A student, Rabab plans to research the intersection of religion, culture, and medicine via the narratives of Muslims and South Asians involved in medical humanitarianism. She hopes this research and the skills from the program will support her in becoming a more knowledgeable and effective physician in the future.

Emily Long

Master’s Student, Concentration in Literature, Medicine, and Culture

HHIVE Grand Rounds Coordinator

Emily holds a B.S. in Biology with a second major in English with Highest Honors and a minor in Medicine, Literature, and Culture from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. As an undergraduate, Emily conducted research within the medical humanities by spending a summer studying access to health care in rural communities using both qualitative and quantitative methods. She also composed a senior English honors thesis under the direction of Dr. Eliza Richards in which she used a psychosocial framework to consider how works of gothic fiction portrayed women’s mental health. Her current research focuses on pre-trauma theory in nineteenth-century American literature.