Marymount Students Bring “Grandparents” to SchoolContact: Tarateta, Maja
For a few hours, the divide between The Greatest Generation and Generation Y narrowed a bit when Marymount College of Fordham University students spent a half day on March 9 with nearly 50 Westchester County senior citizens, who came to the campus as part of the Westchester County Department of Senior Programs and Services’ Pre-White House Conference on Aging. The Conference is incorporating students’ views into its findings through its SPEAK-UP (Student Participants Embracing Aging Issues of Key Concern) Program.
Seniors attended classes with Marymount students, spent time getting to know them over an oral-history questionnaire--which enabled both groups to learn they were more like each other than they suspected--took salsa lessons from members of the Latinas Unidas club on campus, and learned about reflexology. The Grannie Rappers, a choir from Mount Vernon, N.Y., also performed to rousing applause.
The Marymount event was so well-received, plans are underway for the College to continue hosting seniors independently next year.
“As part of our Pre-White House Conference on Aging, we’ve been uniting young people with different generations so they can understand why they must care about aging issues,” said Westchester County Executive and Fordham alumnus Andy Spano. “In most cases, members of different generations love and respect each other—and that’s another reason aging policy affects us all.”
The White House Conference on Aging, to be held in Washington, D.C., Oct. 23 to 26, will develop recommendations for additional research and action in the field of aging.