In the Loop
Student Stories : Mar 8, 2018

Student Spotlight: Alyson Maier

Master of Arts (M.A.) in Arts in Medicine, 2018

Aly Maier is a current graduate student in the Center for Arts in Medicine’s Master of Arts (M.A.) in Arts in Medicine program and will be completing her degree in May of this year.  She currently serves as program coordinator for Arts for Health Florida, and administrative assistant for the National Organization for Arts in Health.  She also traveled with the UF Center for Arts in Medicine to Rwanda on an arts in health outreach trip.

Arts for Health Florida is a statewide resource for arts in health practitioners. They provide professional development opportunities through symposia, workshops, and webinars relating to patient care, healing environments, caring for caregivers, community well-being, and improving empathy and observation through medical education. Since starting as program coordinator in May 2017, Maier has completed a strategic plan for the organization, secured a major funding grant, planned multiple webinars, and is currently planning their annual symposia. 

Maier has also recently joined the staff at NOAH, the National Organization for Arts in Health. As administrative assistant, she will be helping the director and board of directors to achieve their current goals around Arts in Health practice, research and certification. Maier credits the strategic planning, program planning and grant writing experience she gained from the Center for Arts in Medicine graduate program as instrumental in allowing her to execute the demands of her positions.

In November 2017, Maier travelled to Rwanda as part of an interdisciplinary group of artists lead by the director of the Center for Arts in Medicine, Jill Sonke. Maier says the experience was incredible and life-changing. Maier helped facilitate the restoration of a mural originally designed by Lily Yeh and, along with other visual artists, designed and painted a health-promotion mural at a local clinic, which illustrates family planning tools and techniques. 

As this is the final semester of her time in the M.A. for Arts in Medicine, she is working on completing her capstone project at the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida.  Maier will be researching whether participating in arts in medicine activities increases quality of work life and job satisfaction for nurses at Moffitt. 

"I fully credit the program, the coursework and connections to my current success in the field," Maier said regarding her experience in the graduate program and future in the field, "and am excited to continue to engage with the field through my roles at Arts for Health Florida and NOAH."