During COVID-19, Center Stage Arts in Health at the Penn State College of Medicine commissioned artists to create images that exude messages of hope, encouragement and gratitude to display on signs outside at all four driveway entrances to our Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. The signs show gratitude and support for our front line workers as they arrive on campus for work and as they leave at the end of a shift. Director Claire de Boer says, “This is an especially tense time for our nurses, physicians, therapists, cleaners, food services folks, and all the other employees keeping our hospital running. And yet they arrive at work every day with courage and smiles, ready for what is coming.”
Twelve artists responded to the call and Center Stage created sixty-nine signs for health care workers. Participating Artist Wynn Yarrow says, “Thank you so much for thinking of me. It has been very good to focus on others and to reach out creating something to comfort someone who needs reassurance, hope, and gratitude.”
Artist Mark Workman says, “It is the least I can do and I am grateful for the opportunity to help in some small way during this time of helplessness.”
Coordinator of Artistic Enhancement Betsy Fallat says that the most meaningful part of the project was seeing the community of artists and facility workers band together to support our healthcare employees during this extremely trying time. “To have a small part in brightening someone’s day was touching beyond words,” she says.