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Writing Awards

The Dearing Writing Award Competition


Bruce Dearing came to SUNY Upstate in 1976 as our first professor of humanities in medicine. He taught courses such as “Literature by Physicians: Sir Thomas Browne to Lewis Thomas,” and “Death and Dying: A Literary Perspective” and co-founded what would later become the Consortium for Culture and Medicine (CCM). Throughout his career at Upstate, Bruce emphasized the connections between medicine and the humanities.

The Dearing Writing Award Competition, open to all students, faculty, and employees here at Upstate, began in 1986 and continues to honor his memory and his commitment to creative writing within a medical university.


  Interested in reading more about the Dearing Award? Click here.










F. Sean Hodge Prize for Poetry in Medicine


F. Sean Hodge, MD, a graduate of SUNY Upstate Medical University who went on to establish a thriving otolaryngology practice, died an untimely death in 2017. A physician who loved the humanities, he read and wrote poetry and played music as complements to a busy physician’s life. 

In his honor, his family and the Center for Bioethics and Humanities established a poetry prize, to encourage physicians and physicians-in-training to write poetry as one way of reflecting on and communicating their experiences. 


Looking for a more in-depth overview of the Hodge Prize? Click here.