About Us

We are Stony Brook journalism students who set out in the middle of a global pandemic to tell the story of the coronavirus on our campus. The story of how our university and its teaching hospital helped flatten the curve, care for the sick and engage the community – all while continuing to educate thousands of students. 

The pandemic is, perhaps, the biggest story of our generation. And we found ourselves living it even as we endeavored to cover it, reporting safely by social distancing and masking and conducting interviews remotely.

Our project started with an idea from Professor Richard Ricioppo. With his help and the guidance of Professors Irene Virag and Terence Sheridan – and the support of a grant from the Marilyn J. Simons Foundation – we pieced together the complex picture of how the university and hospital tackled the coronavirus.

Our stories are many and varied. And like the shifting pieces of a kaleidoscope, they stand alone and together to provide a picture of what happened here. How Stony Brook University and Stony Brook University Hospital – and the people who imbue them with passion and compassion – stood up to a pandemic that has transformed us and continues to shape our futures.

“Stony Brook Transformed” was designed and produced by Louis Pagillo, Josh Joseph and Sabrina Liguori. The project was directed and edited by Virag. This team also created “Scenes from a Pandemic” to showcase the work of Virag’s narrative and magazine writing classes in the spring 2020 semester just as the coronavirus was tightening its grip.