Sandra Baughman has been coordinating our National Arts Program® Exhibition at Oakwood Healthcare Systems, MI since its inception into the program in 2007. As a venue coordinator, Sandra truly goes above and beyond what is expected to ensure that everyone involved in the NAP Exhibition, from employees to patients, feel like they are part of a community within the hospital setting.
Sandra has done a tremendous job growing the show over the years from only 42 participants in 2007 to 105 participants in 2010 featuring 180 pieces of art. To expand participation each year she tries a new method to reach even more potential participants to make them aware of the NAP Exhibition. This year, she worked closely with the Corporate Communications and Graphics departments to create target email messages designed using the exhibition’s posters as inspiration.
With her remarkable passion for the arts, Sandra's job title says it all. She is truly an "Arts for the Spirit Program Coordinator". We are very pleased to feature her as the NAP Spolight for this month.
When we asked Sandra about her experience with the NAP, here is what she had to say ...
Q. What makes the National Arts Program® different than any other art exhibit put on by Oakwood Healthcare System?
A. We have 10 galleries within a four-hospital system and rotate fine art through those galleries on a quarterly basis. The NAP exhibit is an annual exhibit and the only exhibit that showcases the talent and creativity of our employees and their family members. We accept all entries so that every age and level is represented.
Q. Why do you feel that displaying employee artwork is important?
A. Employee recognition is extremely important in any business. In a healthcare setting, providing an opportunity for employees to share their artwork with not only other employees but also with our patients and visitors creates an extension of the caring environment. Employees are proud to see their work exhibited and valued.
Q. How have employees and their families responded to the opportunity to display their artwork in the hospital?
A. We have been involved with the NAP for 5 years. The response by employees and their families has been overwhelming. Participation has increased each year as more and more employees see the variety of artwork presented.
Q. Why do you think displaying artwork in a hospital setting is so important?
A. Healthcare employees have the unique job of nurturing and building trust with patients and families. The art exhibit creates another layer of familiarity between the patients and visitors and our employees. Employee art reveals the human side of physicians, nurses, and other staff. Art exhibits offer the viewer a necessary distraction in order to cope with the stress of the hospital experience.
Q. What is your favorite aspect of the National Arts Program®?
A. The support of the NAP staff is wonderful. Everything from the monetary support for the awards to the administrative support has been outstanding. The national recognition of the program through the NAP marketing efforts has had a positive impact on our arts program as a whole.
Q. Do visitors to the hospital respond to the exhibit?
A. Absolutely! We have sold pieces to visitors who are just passing through and stories have been shared about visitor’s reactions to some of the pieces.
Q. How has utilizing online registration made the process easier for you?
A. The online registration has been such an improvement! I love that fact that I do not have to decipher handwritten forms any longer. The online option also expedites the registration process and we can now accept registrations up to the last hour of our deadline date. Participants love the online option as well.
Q. Can you tell us how art has had a positive impact on your personal life?
A. I have been involved in the arts for as long as I can remember. I am an artist first, and Arts Administrator second. The journey of creating art is by far the best therapy one can enter into. It frees the soul and connects us on a very genuine level.
Q. How did you get started in the art field or have you always been involved in the arts? Are you an artist yourself?
A. Yes, I am an artist. Printmaking and Fiber are my area of interest. I have a degree in the arts, worked as a graphic designer, owned a fine art studio and now manage a healing arts program for a large hospital system.