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Doctors Who Create was started in 2015 by Vidya Viswanathan, then a pre-medical student, who wanted to change the culture of medicine to encourage and reward creativity. With the help of a growing team, whose members you can see below, we published many articles and art pieces, held an inaugural conference in 2019, planned a second conference in 2020, and continued to publish during the pandemic. We ended operations in January 2022, but we continue to leave the website up as a hopeful source of inspiration for people in the medical field. Read our original mission statement and site description below:

There are many, many doctors and medical students walking down hospital and clinic hallways who are extraordinarily creative, sometimes even without meaning to be. They express this creativity in political advocacy, leadership, entrepreneurship, technology, writing, music, art, teaching, or other forms. They join a long history of creative, worldly physicians like Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. and Anton Chekhov. However, in the current climate of medicine, some say it is not easy or necessarily rewarded to be creative, inside or outside the hospital. Going down the medical path often involves pressures to quickly extinguish all creativity, and conform to a series of pre-ordained steps and traditions. 
The community of Doctors Who Create, with this website as its hub, aims to challenge that status quo. We want to change the culture of medicine to encourage and reward creativity. We’re starting by highlighting creative things that are already happening, cultivating physician and student networks, and providing inspiration for future physicians. In the future, we hope to arrange conferences, contests, and scholarships for creative people in medicine.

Doctors Who Create is changing the culture of medicine to encourage and reward creativity. Read more about our mission, and enjoy the site.


We are a team of dedicated volunteers: attendings, residents, medical students, post-bac pre-meds, and undergraduates, all passionate about the DWC mission.


Photo credit: Peggy Peterson Photography

Vidya Viswanathan is the founder of Doctors Who Create and is a third-year resident in pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. She is pursuing a career in primary care pediatrics. She received her BA in Social Studies and a citation in Mandarin Chinese from Harvard College, and MD from the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine. She freelance writes about medicine and innovation, and has published in The Atlantic and MedTech Boston. Read her writing at and follow her on twitter (@vidyavis).


Stephanie Woo is a third-year resident in internal medicine at Georgetown; she earned her MD from Georgetown University School of Medicine. In 2012, she earned her BA in History and Science at Harvard College, for which she wrote her senior thesis on the political, economic, and social factors influencing the bubonic plague outbreak in San Francisco in 1900-1904. While she is keeping an open mind with regard to medical specialties, she has a special interest in working with cancer patients. Outside of the classroom, she enjoys practicing yoga, learning to play the ukulele, and playing with her family’s beagle.


Headshot for Doctors Who Create_Magoon

Hello!  My name is Christopher Magoon. I’m a fourth-year at Perelman SOM. I’m thrilled to be an editor of the Daily Dose section, with hopes of facilitating heartfelt stories about medicine and its many tentacles.  Feel free to follow/contact me at or @cpdmagoon.


I’m Dr. Ekta Taneja, a PGY3 psychiatry resident at the Cambridge Health Alliance and one of the editors of the Daily Dose. While at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, a friend and I developed and implemented a humanism in medicine elective at our school. The purpose of the elective was to re-engage medical students’ creativity and empathy at precisely the time when it was challenged the most, and the course was a resounding success – it has continued on at the school several years after its creators graduated. Residency thus far has transformed me into a masked, white-coat-clad crusader flitting from corner-to-corner of the hospital in a caffeine-induced frenzy, attempting healing magic on all    who cross my path. And now it’s time to bring that healing magic to bear at a broader level of impact, trying to keep the flames of the humanities burning within the field of medicine.


Eugenia Xiao is a first year nursing student at Columbia University School of Nursing, pursuing a Doctorate in Nursing Practice. She graduated Magna Cum Laude in Anthropology from Cornell University. She loves sharing stories about the unconventional paths that medical professionals take to better the lives of their own and the healthcare system.

Carolyn Roy-Bornstein, an editor of the Book Review section, was a nurse for ten years before pursuing her medical degree. She received her BA in biology from Clark University in 1987 and her MD from the University of Massachusetts Medical School in 1991. She did her internship and residency in pediatrics at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center. She worked at an urban community health center for twelve years before opening her own private practice. She also loves to write. In 2012 her memoir Crash: A Mother, a Son, and the Journey from Grief to Gratitude was published by Globe Pequot Press. In 2014 she co-authored Chicken Soup for the Soul Recovering from Traumatic Brain Injuries, 101 Stories of Hope, Healing, and Hard Work with Amy Newmark. She is currently revising her second memoir Last Stop on the Struggle Bus: A Memoir of Love. Her work has appeared in the Boston Globe, Poets & Writers, JAMA and many other venues. She is married to her fabulous husband Saul with whom she has two grown sons and two foster daughters. She loves running, swimming, biking and competing in triathlons.


Esha Khurana, an editor of the Profiles in Creativity section, is a 4th year MD/MPH student with a passion for social justice, literature, philosophy, public health, and neuroscience, among other things. When she’s not diving into a new intellectual passion, she enjoys rock climbing, reading, writing, kayaking, dancing, and hiking in her spare time. But this is also likely to change, because she really enjoys constantly learning new things and picking up new hobbies. The best way to find out more about her is to probably ask her in person over a cup of green tea.

Richard Wu, the editor of the Events and Opportunities sections, is a Eugene McDermott Scholar and recent graduate from the University of Texas at Dallas. Richard is interested in the intersection of medicine and the arts, and he enjoys writing stories, creating artwork, and composing music. His art and writing have been published in The New Physician, The Healing MusePulse: Voices from the Heart of Medicine, and Daily Science Fiction, as well as displayed at the US Capitol Complex and US Department of Education in Washington, DC.



Darlina Liu is a psychiatry resident at Cambridge Health Alliance. She graduated from the NYU School of Medicine. She previously studied biology and anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania. Her favorite things to create (besides podcast episodes) are board games, new recipes, improv scenes, and children’s books. She is the author of The Bailey Blues, a book that teaches kids about depression through the story of her dog, Bailey. 

Mekala Neelakantan is a pediatrics resident at the University of Michigan. She graduated from the Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine in Kalamazoo, Michigan! She is passionate about Pediatrics, medical education, and mentorship in medicine. Mekala has always been a fan of the arts (that’s what her name means!); music and writing play a significant role in her life, and she is thrilled to be a part of the DWC Podcast team.

Elaine Ma is a first-year medical student at USC Keck School of Medicine. She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 2020 with a BA in Health & Societies, which sparked her passion for exploring the history, sociology, & anthropology of medicine. She is passionate about humanism in healthcare and the social determinants of health. Off the clock, you will usually find her stretching or meditating on her yoga mat. She has recently taken up fostering kittens and is on a mission to find the best non-dairy ice cream in Los Angeles. 

Michel Liu is a recent graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, where she studied English and Biology for undergrad. Hailing from western NY, she now lives in Philadelphia where she works as a clinical research coordinator. She is passionate about women’s health, journalism, and volunteering in her community. As an interdisciplinary learner, Michel believes in the healing power of writing, whether it be in an informative or therapeutic way. 

Margaret Wang is currently a fifth-year MD/MPH student at the University of Pennsylvania. She graduated from Princeton University in 2017, where she majored in Neuroscience and minored in Computer Science. In her free time, she loves to play Ultimate Frisbee in the local Philadelphia area. For creative pursuits, she enjoys making bad movies and mockumentaries with her friends, and more recently, consuming podcasts and audiobooks while walking her dog Momo.



Samantha Slomiak is a Psychiatry resident at Columbia University. She previously earned her B.S. in Biology from the University of Pittsburgh and her M.D. from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. She is fascinated by the intersection of the mind and medicine, as well as the influence of art on our perception of the world.


Ananya Chandra is a sophomore at the University of Pennsylvania interested in both chemistry and neuroscience. She currently works at the Grill Lab studying neuroscience. Outside of science, she enjoys photography and art, and spends a majority of her time as the photo editor of the Daily Pennsylvanian.



Amy Waldner is an Emergency Medicine Resident at the University of Pennsylvania. She received her BA in Biology at Gustavus Adolphus College and MD from George Washington University, also completing a health policy track. She is a regular volunteer at Puentes de Salud and Penn’s Refugee Clinic, as well as an asylum evaluator for Physicians for Human Rights. She’s interested in care provided to vulnerable populations, especially immigrant populations.


Managing Editor – Lauren Kim

Web Design Lead – Julia Miao

Social Media Manager – Jihan Ryu

Book Review Editor – Emily Wendell

Visual Arts Editor, 2019-20202 Conference Planning Team – Liz Upton

Podcast, 2019 Conference Planning Team – Shiv Nadkarni

2019-2020 Conference Planning Team, Podcast – OraYinka Orafidiya

Podcast – Benjamin Silva

Podcast – Chukwuma Onyebeke

Podcast – Katie Magoon

Podcast – Tochukwu Awachie

2020 Conference Leader, 2019 Conference Organizer, Staff Writer – Alex Chen

2020 Conference Leader, 2019 Conference Organizer/Publicity Lead, Staff Writer – Isabella Cuan

Staff Writer, 2019-2020 Conference Planning Team – Jeffrey Millstein

Staff Writer – Neel Duggal

Staff Writer – Justin Grenet

Staff Writer – Hafsa Bhatty

Staff Writer – Chiemela Ohanele

Staff Writer – Anita Lowe

Staff Writer – Nilan Schnure

Staff Writer – Allison Swiecki-Sikora

Staff Artist – Lizz Card

Staff Artist – Connie Jiang

2020 Conference Organizer – Syed Hoda

2020 Conference Organizer – Sheila Quinn

2020 Conference Organizer – Brooke Saffren

2020 Conference Organizer – Abra Shen

2020 Conference Organizer – Anoushka Sinha

2020 Conference Organizer – Shana Zucker

2020 Conference Organizer – Daniel Eison

2020 Conference Organizer – Madhura Pradhan

2020 Conference Organizer – Kathleen Ackert

2020 Conference Organizer – Aditya Narayan

2020 Conference Organizer – Farah Hussain