Welcome to the Mayo Clinic Volunteer Programs page. Volunteers play a key role in making a difference for Mayo Clinic patients and visitors. Mayo Clinic volunteers provide patients and visitors with hospitality, services and amenities that would otherwise not be available. Follow this page to stay up-to-date on information and happenings pertaining to Mayo Clinic Volunteer Programs, as well as information that may be valuable when fulfilling your volunteer shifts.
The following communication was sent to Mayo Clinic staff announcing a subway refresh project. This exciting project will begin soon! As volunteers, we are providing you with the same announcement, so you have information to assist Mayo Clinic’s patients and visitors, as well. We will continue to share updates with you as we learn more. If you would have any questions, please connect with a Mayo Clinic Volunteer Programs' staff member.
Whether you want to escape from inclement weather, or are tired of dodging traffic and waiting for walk signs, Mayo's pedestrian subway system provides a convenient way to help you get to your destination in downtown Rochester. Now this underground network of corridors and adjacent common areas will get a major facelift.
Creating a more inviting experience for patients and staff
A yearlong project, which is scheduled to begin Nov. 1, will bring major improvements to the subway system with:
"Our patients come to us with different levels of mobility, so smoother flooring on ramps will make it easier for families to push loved ones in wheelchairs. And more seating in long corridors will provide welcome places to rest," says Stephanie Hurt, chair of the Division of Support Services. "The upgrades will make our patients' and visitors' time with Mayo Clinic easier and more enjoyable."
In addition, dining experiences and options will be upgraded:
"To lead in health care and to truly be in a category of one, we must provide an exceptional experience in every way," says Gianrico Farrugia, M.D., Mayo Clinic's president and CEO. "Patients' experience is shaped by many factors — from their care and communications with staff, to their environment — and the subway is one of many patients' first interactions with Mayo Clinic. Also, thousands of Mayo Clinic staff use the subway daily, so it will be a joy for patients, visitors and staff to be in surroundings that are beautiful, filled with light, and designed around everyone's comfort and needs. I'm excited to watch the transformation happen."
Upgrades by zone
The upgrades will occur in a phased approach in six zones. One master schedule will be used to coordinate the work and minimize disruptions during construction.
Here are the upgrades that you can expect in each area:
Signage in each zone will provide directions, information and a sneak peek at the finished spaces.
View a video slideshow to see how these areas will look when construction is complete. This video does not have sound.
How to help patients, visitors during construction
Because this project is highly visible across Mayo Clinic in Rochester, you are strongly encouraged to direct patients and visitors to information about the ongoing work.
An article on the Mayo Clinic News Network will be updated regularly as the project progresses. Visitors to Mayo Clinic in Rochester, as well as the Travel, Lodging and Maps page, also will be directed to this article.
These talking points will help you communicate with patients who may have questions (for additional tips for assisting patients, please see the Patient Experience handout):
Learn more with these questions and answers:
Why is Mayo updating the Rochester downtown pedestrian subway?
The physical environment is an important aspect of how patients, visitors and staff experience and feel about Mayo Clinic. The upgrades are designed to greatly enhance that experience for everyone through lighter, brighter spaces with innovative seating arrangements, more convenient dining options, and inspirational artwork and wall installations. It's a way to bring joy and also ensure Mayo Clinic is in a category of one when patients are making their health care choices.
How long will it take to complete?
The construction will start the first week of November and will take place in phases across six zones. All phases will be completed by December 2020. Some zones will have construction at the same time, and a master schedule will be used to coordinate the work across zones.
What does the project include?
The project includes upgrades to six zones, including the Mayo-Harwick staff corridor, the Baldwin-Guggenheim patient area, the Wanek Family Concourse, the Mayo-Hilton Subway and Courtyard, the Damon Subway, the Siebens Patient Cafeteria, and the Hilton Atrium and Desk C. For details and renderings, see the video slideshow.
When were those subway zones last updated?
Zone 1 is original construction from the 1970s. The Baldwin and Harwick buildings, and the Mayo staff elevator lobby, were updated in the 1990s. Updates occurred in Zone 2 in 2006, 2011 and 2017; zones 3 and 4, in the 2000s; Zone 5, in 2007; and Zone 6, in 2010.
Why is this being prioritized over other potential projects?
Patients' experiences are shaped by many factors, from their care and interactions with staff to the physical environment of their surroundings. The subway is one of patients' first experiences with Mayo Clinic. In addition, Mayo Clinic staff use the subway, and improving their environment can be a source of joy.
Will other segments of the subway be upgraded?
While not in the scope of this project, future upgrades of other subway segments will be evaluated.
What will happen to artwork displayed in the zones?
Artwork could remain, be taken off view or possibly replaced.
How will Mayo manage patient and visitor navigation, and questions?
Information will be posted along the construction sites, as well as on mayoclinic.org and the Mayo Clinic News Network, and at patient kiosks. Staff and volunteers are asked to use the prepared talking points with patients and visitors. These talking points, in the attached document, are being shared with staff, volunteers and visitors.
Mayo Clinic Volunteer Programs staff