Careers in Aging Week Event: A Screening of Alive Inside (4/9)

Alive Inside movie
Thursday, April 9, 2015
3:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Albin O. Kuhn Library and Gallery
Careers in Aging Week Event

Co Sponsors: Baccalaureate Social Work Program and the Erickson School of Aging

Featured Speaker Dan Cohen, Music and Memory.

About the film: ALIVE INSIDE is a joyous cinematic exploration of music’s capacity to reawaken our souls and uncover the deepest parts of our humanity. Filmmaker Michael Rossato-Bennett chronicles the astonishing experiences of individuals around the country who have been revitalized through the simple experience of listening to music. His camera reveals the uniquely human connection we find in music and how its healing power can triumph where prescription medication falls short.

This stirring documentary follows social worker Dan Cohen, founder of the nonprofit organization Music & Memory, as he fights against a broken healthcare system to demonstrate music’s ability to combat memory loss and restore a deep sense of self to those suffering from it. Rossato-Bennett visits family members who have witnessed the miraculous effects of personalized music on their loved ones, and offers illuminating interviews with experts including renowned neurologist and best-selling author Oliver Sacks (Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain) and musician Bobby McFerrin (“Don’t Worry, Be Happy”).

An uplifting cinematic exploration of music and the mind, ALIVE INSIDE’s inspirational and emotional story left audiences humming, clapping and cheering at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, where it won the Audience Award. For more information, click here.

Aging-Self-Stereotypes: Obstacle or Pathway to Health? (4/13)

g_logoThe Doctoral Program in Gerontology at UMB/UMBC, Department of Sociology and Anthropology and The Erickson School present “Aging Self-Stereotypes: Obstacle or Pathway to Health?” by Becca Levy, Ph.D, Associate Professor, Yale School of Public Health.

Dr. Levy’s research explores psychosocial factors that influence elders’ cognitive and physical functioning, as well as their longevity. She is credited with creating a field of study that focuses on how positive and negative age stereotypes, which are assimilated from the culture, can have beneficial and adverse effects, respectively, on the health of older individuals.

This event will take place on April 13, 2015 at 2:00 pm in Commons 331.

Erickson School Presents Memory Care Summit 2015: The Positive Case for Change in Dementia Services

Kim Campbell

Kim Campbell presents the keynote address.

Earlier this year, the Erickson School presented Memory Care Summit 2015 in Captiva Island, FL. The event was designed to address practical issues for the future of caring for those with memory impairment and their families. Several leading experts in dementia care, including Dean Judah Ronch and Dr. Bill Thomas from the Erickson School, presented at the summit to discuss innovative practices, growth strategies, and success for aging services leaders.

Among the speakers at the event was Kim Campbell, wife of country music legend Glen Campbell featured in the major motion picture I’ll Be Me.” Campbell presented the keynote address at the event and shared her family’s experiences, challenges, struggles, discovery, and moments of joy in the journey of her husband Glen’s Alzheimer’s Disease diagnosis. To watch video clips of Kim Campbell’s keynote address, click here.

To learn more about the event, including a list of speakers and presentations from Memory Care Summit 2015, click here.

Judah Ronch, Erickson School, in Baltimore Magazine

In its Summer 2014 retirement guide, Baltimore Magazine published an article exploring what modern retirement means to the “baby boom” generation. Erickson School Dean Judah Ronch was quoted extensively in the story and commented on how American society’s notions of aging are outdated.

Judah Ronch

“Younger boomers don’t want to eat at 5 p.m.,” said Ronch when discussing the changing nature of continuing-care retirement communities (CCRCs). He said today’s retirees aren’t necessarily looking for a quiet place to live out their golden years surrounded by people similar to them: “the CCRC is based on a model of aging as leisure and decline,” Ronch said. “I’m hearing from CCRC operators that younger boomers are saying the model doesn’t work for them.”

In the article, Ronch noted that the baby boom generation is rethinking its concept of what home means to them. “Creative solutions come as second nature to boomers,” he said. He added co-housing and group-living arrangements are becoming more common. “This is a generation that knows about groups. We grew up with group therapy, consciousness-raising, and political activism. I expect to see a landscape of options.”

The importance of technology was discussed in the story, and Galina Madjaroff, a clinical assistant professor at the Erickson School, said developers should recognize the vast market potential. “Most technology is being developed for the 25-35 age group,” said Madjaroff, who specializes in technology and older adults. “There’s a huge gap between what the older generation needs and what the industry is providing.”

Helena Mentis, an assistant professor of information systems, said wearable technology such as FitBit, which is a bracelet that monitors sleep and physical activity, among other inputs, “has taken off with healthy twenty somethings.” But that technology could also be used for older folks “to make sure they’re moving enough,” and in some cases, “to see if they’re engaging in social interaction.” Mentis also discussed the potential benefits of Google Glass and Wii Fit.

To read the full article in Baltimore Magazine titled, “A boomer’s guide to 65,” click here.

Erickson School Featured in Provider Magazine Video

Erickson School Dean Judah Ronch and Professor Bill Thomas were recently featured in a video series examining elder care in Provider Magazine. In the video, they discuss the UMBC Aging curriculum, its impact on students, and what it means to the future of aging services.

Ronch and Thomas highlight the program’s integration and study of public policy, business management and human aging as a way to provide undergraduate and graduate students with the knowledge and experience necessary to be leaders and entrepreneurs in the field.

You can watch the complete interview in the video above. For more on the video series in Provider Magazine, click here.

Judah Ronch, Erickson School, in The Baltimore Sun

Judah RonchAn article published April 9 in The Baltimore Sun explores how Columbia resident Shirley Johannesen Levine has entertained audiences around the country with her puppetry skills and her company Puppet Dance Productions, with a focus on her recent trip to the Ellicott City Senior Center.

Erickson School Dean Judah Ronch was interviewed for the article and said productions such as Johannesen’s not only provide entertainment for elders, but they can support wellness.

“At any age, interaction is key to a sense of engagement and meaning of life,” Ronch said. He added interactive activities such as puppet shows can promote autonomy and self-esteem. They can also help elders with dementia positively respond to an environment that isn’t overwhelming. “The more you can do for engagement, the better,” he added.

To read the full article in The Baltimore Sun, click here.

Judah Ronch, Erickson School, in The Baltimore Beacon

Judah RonchAn article published in the April 2014 edition of The Baltimore Beacon newspaper examines the current view of retirement and how it looks much different today than it has in the past.

Erickson School Dean Judah Ronch is quoted extensively in the article and comments on how people are living longer and healthier lives due to less demanding work environments and better healthcare.

“We have more vigor and more energy than our parents and grandparents did,” Ronch said. “As a result, we don’t feel the need – or the desire – to view retirement as a life of total leisure. Many of us still want to contribute, whether it’s using our skills in new ways, or developing new areas of expertise and new careers altogether.”

In the past, retirees would keep busy through volunteer work, but Ronch said that is one of the many aspects of retirement that is changing.

“Baby boomers are used to being compensated for their time,” he said. “We may still want to work and earn money, but perhaps in a less competitive environment.”

To read the full article titled, “Retirees are hardly retiring,” click here (Ronch is quoted extensively on page 24).