“Sew” Awesome-WMU Students Make Masks for Hospital Staff

Among the covid stories of profound tragedy, grief, greed, and failures of leadership there are many more stories of regular people stepping into the role of “everyday hero.”

Included in the number of everyday heroes are fashion design students at Western Michigan University who saw a news article on the dire shortage of face masks for health care workers and decided to use their skills to help out.

According to the WMU online article by Erin Flynn, “The group made a little more than 50 masks in two hours and have continued the project separately over the course of the week, donating what they’ve crafted to Bronson Hospital. (One of the student leaders,) Al Mauriello also says she’s seen an outpouring of support and people interested in helping since posting a photo of the mask-making session on social media.”

Forming a make shift team, they created an assembly line to cut, sew and iron the masks to provide to local health care facilties.

“It made me realize that practically—regardless of passion, inspiration or personal desire that comes with fashion design—sewing is a skill people need, and I should never take my education for granted,” says McKay.

Student Carly McKay in WMU online article by Erin Flynn

Using creativity, teamwork, practical skills and a desire to serve- these students are exemplifying the 21st century skills that will engender success in their future careers, and make a difference now.

Questions for Discussion:

  1. What does the author mean by “everyday hero?”
  2. What was the motivating factor to start this project?
  3. Using prior knowledge, why weren’t there enough masks for health care workers?
  4. What were the skills and characteristics that contributed to their successfully accomplishing their goals, according to the article?
  5. What is Ms. McKay’s attitude towards her education?
  6. What does the word “engender” mean in the last paragraph?

For the article by Erin Flynn on WMU News online, please click here.

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