During my surgical internship five years ago, I met Carl Thompson, a pancreatic cancer patient, with 3-6 months to live. Reclining against his pillow, with his IV running in only normal saline because chemotherapy couldn’t stop the cancer, Carl asked me, “Look, Dr. McCullough, I don’t have long left. So how can I help others, in a big way, even if it means risking my life? For me, risking my life isn’t as big a deal as it is for you. I always wanted to leave a mark before I go.”

Help people. Help a lot of people.

How can I do this?

I had no answer.

But the notion struck me, and got me thinking.

-Dr. Michael McCullough


The Courage Project is a team of committed student researchers creating an online publication about the concept of courage and how it is incorporated into the following fields of Medical Research, Human Rights, Vaccinations, Transplantations, Legal Heroism, and NGOs.

The publication contains profiles of scientists, researchers and ordinary people around the world who have demonstrated great courage in their fields throughout history. Students will also have the opportunity to conduct high profile interviews with current heroes. This work will be compiled into a book written by Dr. McCullough.

The book will also contain opportunities that direct your inner courage to help those in need. Most of the opportunities listed do not require prior training or experience, and include placements in human rights and medical fields. Examples of opportunities of service include an exploratory clinical internship this summer in the ambulance corps in Dharamsala, India.

The goal of the Courage Project is to promote Courageous Volunteerism among the community as well as to gain exposure to those individuals who have performed courageous acts around the world.