Who I Am


I was born and raised in eastern Kentucky. I attended Kenyon college, where I studied English, psychology, anthropology, and other topics in the humanities, receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy, summa cum laude. After college I worked with individuals with psychiatric conditions and later in a neuroscience lab at the University of Illinois, Chicago.

I graduated with a medical degree from Indiana University Medical School in 2011. It was during my medical training that I began to understand the critical role of patient education in providing quality medical care. Instead of pursuing clinical medicine, I opted to build on my strength of clearly explaining medical topics though a career as a freelance medical writer, writing both for lay people and for health professional audiences.

Because of my background, I am well suited to understand medical material at its deepest level while simultaneously keeping the reader’s perspective in mind as I write. Writing for patients, health science students, or even for children, I think about the most direct but accurate way to explain a topic.

Conversely, my perspective is broad enough that I can write clear, up-to-date, succinct but insightful material for professionals. I love working directly with doctors to inform my perspective, writing articles that are both cogent and highly readable.

I write across the biomedical sciences but hold strong interests in rheumatology, neurology, women’s health, autoimmune diseases, genetics, and the intersection of broader social, cultural, and emotional worlds with biomedical topics. I now live in Bloomington, Indiana, with my husband, son, and cat.

Here’s my resume:

Click to access resume.ruthjessenhickman.pdf