MSU Survey Asks for Your Stories of Creativity in the Time of COVID-19

“Creativity in the Time of COVID-19,” an MSU project funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, asks the public to share their stories about the role creativity has played in their lives during the pandemic as well as any creative works they’ve made that have helped them get through this past year. 

two images, one of a guitar and the other of the guitar burning
Colin Jankowski, a Journalism major who was a student in Dr. Natalie Phillips’ “Literature and Society” class during the Spring 2020 semester, rebuilt this guitar after setting it on fire, which was one way of dealing with emotions during the pandemic.

The project is inspired by the idea that the stories from COVID-19 can be transformational and inspire new paths to social justice. By exploring creative habits during the pandemic, the project hopes to paint a richer picture of the everyday art created during COVID-19. 

After participants finish the survey, which is anonymous and takes about 15-30 minutes to complete, they can share examples of creative work they’ve done that have been particularly powerful in their lives by uploading this work. 

The project will culminate in a public exhibition featuring 200 of the COVID-inspired creative works.  

painting of a bird
Painting by Jordan Fitzpatrick, a Psychology major who recently graduated and who was a student in Dr. Natalie Phillips’ “Literature and Society” (ENG 140) class during the Spring 2020 semester.

The goal is to reach people everywhere and to make the survey and exhibition as inclusive as possible. Because of this, the “Creativity in the Time of COVID-19” survey also is available in the following languages: American Sign Language, Braille, French, German, Hindi, Japanese, Kannada, Korean, Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu, and Thai, with other languages soon to follow.  

By collaborating with DisArt, an organization known for its commitment to innovative arts accessibility and production, ongoing amendments will be implemented to account for everyone who would like to participate in this exciting project.

a written sign
Kat Murray, an Education major who was a student in Dr. Natalie Phillips’ “Literature and Society” class during the Spring 2020 semester and who is a cancer survivor, found her voice during the COVID-19 pandemic by creating protest signs for a local Black Lives Matter march.

To participate in this survey, you can visit the website at or any of these social media handles: Instagram @cognitivedhlc, Twitter @CognitiveDH, and Facebook @MSUDHLC.   

For more information about this project, please contact the project team at