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Real Life Film Series: Hidden Pictures

A montage of all the movie posters shown during this years Real Life Film Series.



Tompkins-McCaw Library, Lecture Room 2-010
509 N. 12th St., Richmond, Va. 23298


Students, faculty, staff and health professionals are invited to screenings of engaging documentaries on health science topics followed by discussions about how the subject matter relates to current work at VCU and impacts global health. Speakers with expertise in the film's topic lead the group in lively discussion about the science and issues explored in the film. 

The series is free and open to all. Parking is available for a fee in the 8th Street parking deck. For special accommodations, or to register offline, please contact Thelma Mack, research and education coordinator, at or (804) 828-0017.

Schedule and Registration

Hidden Pictures
March 14, 12:10–1 p.m.
Register for this March 14 event.
Tompkins-McCaw Library
Lecture Room 2-010
Sheds light on the underexposed world of global mental health.

Unseen Enemy
April 11, 12:10–1 p.m.
Register for this April 11 event.
Tompkins-McCaw Library
Lecture Room 2-010
Examines the threat of epidemics in the 21st century and what we can do to fight them.

Films are from VCU Libraries' holdings and may be checked out for personal or class use at Tompkins-McCaw Library, 509 N. 12th St. Some films can be streamed through VCU Libraries' Kanopy database.

Past Events

Clínica de Migrantes
Sept. 27, 5–7 p.m.
Larrick Student Center
Court End Ballroom 
Shows the faces of real people in the middle of the immigration debate and asks if the United States can continue withholding basic necessities from an estimated 11 million undocumented residents.

Speaker: Mark Ryan, M.D., is a family physician at VCUHealth. He practices at and is the medical director of the Hayes E. Willis Health Center in South Richmond, where approximately 25% of the patients are Latinx and another 40% are uninsured. He spent 10 years as a child in Latin America, and he currently leads medical service trips twice a year to the Dominican Republic. He has been actively engaged in providing health outreach services to the Latinx community in Richmond and advocates for healthcare access for all.

A buffet-style dinner will be provided, first come, first served.

This event is held in conjunction with the VCU Common Book program. The 2018–19 common book, Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions by Valeria Luiselli, explores immigration politics by focusing on undocumented children.

Domestic Violence and Health Care
Oct. 11, noon–1:30 p.m.
Tompkins-McCaw Library
Special Collections and Archives Reading Room
Offers an inside look at the highly regarded domestic violence program at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore. Bring your lunch. Cookies provided.

The film will be followed by a discussion featuring experts from VCU and VCU Health:

  • Maria Altonen, MA, EMPOWER coordinator, Injury and Violence Prevention Program, VCU Health
  • Amy Cook, Ph.D., chair of the Criminal Justice Program, L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs
  • Elizabeth "Liz" Cramer, Ph.D., professor, VCU School of Social Work

The discussion will be moderated by:

  • Tameika S. McCoy, M.A., CA, advocate coordinator, University Counseling Services

This event is also held in conjunction with two exhibits located in the library, Oct. 8–12:

  • The Clothesline Project, an exhibit featuring T-shirts decorated with powerful messages by sexual assault survivors or by those who have lost loved ones to sexual assault and is intended to raise awareness in the wider community about the prevalence of sexual assault and to foster a culture of support and healing. This exhibit is organized by SAVES (Students Advocating Violence Education and Support), a student-led itiative of the VCU Wellness Resource Center.
  • Silent Witness, a traveling memorial for Virginians killed as a result of domestic violence, featuring lifesize silhouettes of victims. The memorial is organized by Amy Cook, Ph.D. and students from her service-learning course Crime and Delinquency Prevention and is a partnership between the Wilder School and SAVES.

That Sugar Film
Nov. 15, 12:10–1 p.m.
Tompkins-McCaw Library
Lecture Room 2-010
Documents an experiment to discover the effects of a high sugar diet on a healthy body.

Forgotten Genius
Feb. 14, 12:10–1 p.m.
Tompkins-McCaw Library
Lecture Room 2-010
Brings to life the unknown story of world class scientist and civil rights pioneer Percy Julian.


This series is presented by VCU Libraries and University Student Commons and Activities.

Image: Real Life Film Series 2018–19 montage, by Emily Kundrot.


VCU Libraries

James Branch Cabell Library Monroe Park Campus
901 Park Ave., Box 842033
Richmond, VA 23284-2033
Toll-free: (844) 352-7399
(804) 828-1111
All Libraries
Tompkins-McCaw Library MCV Campus
509 N. 12th St., Box 980582
Richmond, VA 23298-0582
Toll-free: (844) 352-7399
(804) 828-0636

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