COVID-19 double jeopardy: The intersection of race and age

Written by Emma Swinford, Natalie Galucia and Nancy Morrow-Howell Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging at the Institute for Public Health, Washington University in St. Louis The American Society on Aging recently released a statement, which begins, “Age offers no immunity to racism and violence.” In fact, age often magnifies the impact of structural inequalities like racism. […]

Won’t you be my neighbor? Inter-generational living in St. Louis

Written by Emma Swinford, MPH, MSW, Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging Embed from Getty Images The Back Story My experience in the world of inter-generational living started when I began working as a  research assistant with the Friedman Center for Aging in my second year of grad school. The Friedman Center’s work on inter-generational […]

Opinion: Ageism in COVID coverage shrouds full picture of older adult population

Written by Nancy Morrow-Howell, Natalie Galucia and Emma Swinford of the Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging at the Institute for Public Health, Washington University in St. Louis News coverage of the pandemic addresses everyone in later life as one monolithic group – “the elderly” – vulnerable, lonely, living in retirement facilities. Of course, attention […]

COVID-19 & older adults: Time Management & self-care skills

Written by Natalie Galucia, MSW; Nancy Morrow-Howell, MSW, PhD; and Emma Swinford, MPH, MSW, Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging Embed from Getty Images Stay-at-home orders have meant that the routines of millions of people have been disrupted. To stay safe at home, many older adults have been disconnected from jobs, travel plans, grandparent obligations, […]

Careers in Aging Week 2020: Insights from the Friedman Center for Aging

April 19-25 marked 2020 Careers in Aging Week (CIAW). CIAW is hosted every year by the Gerontological Society of America to raise awareness about the diverse careers available in the field of aging. As people are living longer, populations are aging worldwide and the demands for professionals with expertise in aging grows, the Harvey A. […]

Preparing for a Career in Aging: Part I

Written by Natalie Galucia, MSW, Center Manager, Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging & Meghan McDarby, M.A., Psychological & Brain Sciences Washington University has a variety of options available to students pursuing careers in aging. Across both the Danforth and School of Medicine Campuses, students are preparing for this field. To get a taste of […]

A lived experience: Pursuing a career in aging while residing with older adults

Written by Annie Wright, MSOT ‘20, School of Medicine I am currently an occupational therapy student pursuing a Master’s degree. My current goal is to work in a community setting on the population level, which includes all ages. I haven’t narrowed my passion down to a specific topic yet, but I’m hoping that my future […]

Ageism in the time of coronavirus

Written by Jeff Brandt, MSW, Brown School; Natalie Galucia, MSW; Nancy Morrow-Howell, PhD, MSW; and Emma Swinford, MPH, MSW There is no denying it: the threat of COVID-19 looms large for older adults. According to a CDC study, 80% of Coronavirus deaths in the U.S. between February 12 and March 16 occurred in adults age […]

2020 Friedman Lecture & Awards summary

These are truly unprecedented times, and although the staff of the Friedman Center for Aging is disappointed to cancel the Friedman Lecture and Awards annual event for the first time in 20 years, we are excited to announce three award winners as we do each year! Annual Friedman Awards Each year, the Harvey A. Friedman […]

Long-term care: Costs, insurance and reform

Written by Jeff Brandt, MSW ’20, the J. Benjamin Miller Masters Research Fellow in Aging & the recipient of the 2020 Distinguished Student Award for Social Work Leaders in Healthcare American consumers tend to hold some misconceptions when it comes to long-term care. Think Medicare will cover the cost of a nursing home? Think again. […]

Your Next Move: Transitioning to the New Retirement

Seminars Focus on More than Financials As part of its WashU for Life Initiative, the Friedman Center for Aging, at the Institute for Public Health, with the support of the Washington University Department of Human Resources, has created a new program to encourage WashU staff and faculty to think about retirement and plan for their […]

New city? Try home sharing

Written by Annie Wright, Occupational Therapy candidate at Washington University in St. Louis and HomeShare St. Louis participant In the months before moving to St. Louis for graduate school, I was in full panic mode because I had not yet nailed down a housing situation. The panic was not helped by the fact that I […]

The next raison d’etre

Written by David Krausch I live in the Missouri countryside near Labadie; too far away from the city to hear about Lifelong Learning Institute (LLI) in my normal social circles. I learned it in casual conversation with other participants at an open house for St. Louis Public Radio. I mentioned that I enjoy coming out […]

Choose those words carefully!

Written by Ellen C. Boone, PhD, Co-facilitator, OLLI Memoir Class Last week, the director of our Osher Lifelong Learning Institute handed me a paper that began with the sentence, “May is Older Americans Month and the theme this year is Connect, Create, Contribute.” It went on to say that OLLI students are invited by the […]

Connect, create, contribute: Reflections during Older Americans Month 

Written by Leonard Adreon, Washington University’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) participant I am a lucky 92-year-old guy who retired from an active career a decade and a half ago. Lucky, because not long after retirement I found Washington University’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI), where I have been an attendee of classes and now […]

2019 Friedman Lecture & Awards: Advancing aging research & education at Washington University: Preparing for longer, productive lives

“Students may live to age 100” Chancellor Mark S. Wrighton This was just one of the messages at the 19th Annual Friedman Lecture & Awards recently presented by the Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging. Center Director Nancy Morrow–Howell, introduced the event to nearly 200 attendees who also heard a keynote address from Chancellor Mark […]

Helpful resources for caregivers

Written by Christine Hustedde, chief operating officer at Aging Ahead According to research by AARP Public Policy Institute, there were approximately 792,000 caregivers in Missouri in 2013 providing unpaid care for an adult, valued at an estimated $8 billion. Nationally, unpaid caregiving was valued at $470 billion. This is more than the worth of Coca-Cola […]

Transition of care for older adults

Written by Behnaz Sarrami, MS, PharmD, TL1 predoctoral clinical research program alumnus As we celebrate Older Americans Month, it is important to be reminded of those who struggle in an aging society with a health care system that is complex. Imagine a 69-year-old woman admitted to the emergency room for the first time for a […]

Taking steps to end ageism

Written by Gloria C. Gordon, PhD, psychologist and co-founder of STL Village This year, Older Americans Month urges us to take part in activities that enrich our physical, mental, and emotional well-being. The theme brings to mind tried-and-true activities such as physical exercise, learning new skills, doing creative work, and socializing with others. I suggest […]

Transforming aging from a aocial problem to a social solution

Written by Paul Weiss, PhD, president of Oasis Institute This March I had the opportunity to sit on a panel at the Aging in America Conference in San Francisco, along with Kate Hoepke, executive director of San Francisco Village, and Jim Emerman, executive vice president of, to discuss purpose. Jim presented findings from recent […]

Meaningful engagement across ages and cultures

Written by Rey Castuciano, founder & CEO of Table Wisdom, Inc. So there I am, waiting to take my dad home from his weekly stroke therapy group, when I recognize someone I know. It’s Mary, one of the first participants in our intergenerational program. At first she didn’t recognize me, but after I reminded her […]

When social benefits outweigh health risks

Written by Juliet Simone, MPH, MBA, national health program director, OASIS My dad was not the model of health by anyone’s measure. He had diabetes for 40 years, didn’t get much exercise, and had a heart attack accompanied by a valve replacement 25 years before he died. He was a lifelong smoker and an (almost) […]

Opening the door: How to engage a “loner”

Written by Sarah Z. Levinson, St. Louis NORC manager, Jewish Federation of St. Louis The desire to engage individuals who are isolated appears like the best goal possible. After all, loneliness and social isolation are correlated with increased health risks and decreased quality of life. But what about people who actually prefer to be alone? […]

Making the move

You are likely to help that person downsize in the future, probably sooner rather than later.

Ancora Imparo — I am still learning

Written by Pat Ginn, member of the Lifelong Learning Institute at Washington University in St. Louis For many people who are getting older, building a sustained life can be a daunting task.   Friends move away, you can become distanced from coworkers once you retire and don’t see them every day, an accident has posed physical […]

Making a difference through research

Written by Andrea Denny, JD, MSSW, outreach, recruitment and education core leader at the Knight Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at Washington University in St. Louis When I learned the theme for Older American’s Month was how older adults are taking part in activities that promote wellness and making a real difference in their communities, I […]

Supporting the right to vote for older Americans

Written by Kerri Gallagher, development assistant for Aging Ahead (formally Mid-East Area Agency on Aging) While celebrating Older Americans Month, we should think about making strides to preserve older citizens’ right to vote by readily providing voting information, absentee ballots, and transportation to polling sites. Historically, older voters have the highest turnout rates. According to […]

American Indian elders: Living libraries

Written by Kelly Connor, research assistant for the Kathryn M. Buder Center for American Indian Studies & MSW candidate, with support from Molly Tovar, EdD, director, Buder Center for American Indian Studies at the Brown School There is a saying in indigenous culture that “when an elder dies, a library burns.” American Indian elders in […]

Discovering purpose in retirement

Written by Leonard Adreon, facilitator, Lifelong Learning Institute, Washington University in St. Louis The year was 2005. I decided to hang it up after a long and relatively successful career. I started working at age 9 as an office boy for the St. Louis Cardinal Baseball team. I was drafted into the Navy during World […]

Learning to fall

Written by David Marchant, Professor of the Practice in Dance at Washington University in St. Louis As we age, we instinctively move more slowly, cautiously avoiding situations and activities that challenge our balance. But what if we’re going about the problem in the wrong way? What if instead of avoiding risk of falls, we need […]

Exercise your body, exercise your brain!

Written by Elyse Murrell, MSW, education and outreach manager of the Alzheimer’s Association, Greater Missouri Chapter “What can I do to protect myself from Alzheimer’s?” This powerful question is a common one among aging individuals and the loved ones of people who have the disease. According to the Alzheimer’s Association’s latest Facts and Figures, more […]

Promoting quality of life through art

Written by Lynn Friedman Hamilton, Maturity and Its Muse The 2018 theme for Older Americans Month, Engage at Every Age, emphasizes that you are never too old (or young) to take part in activities that can enrich your physical, mental, and emotional well-being. I engage in my community by sharing my passion for art — and […]

Home sharing: Living with roommates in later life

Written by Karen Backes, masters research fellow in aging, Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging at the Institute for Public Health Thanks to decades of advances in technology, public health, and medicine, many Americans are able to live independently or semi-independently well into late adulthood, and the vast majority of older adults seem to prefer […]

The power of connecting

Written by Nikki Goldstein, MSW, executive director, Crown Center for Senior Living All the lonely peoplewhere do they all come from?All the lonely peoplewhere do they all belong?  Beatles, Eleanor Rigby There are a myriad of programs, classes, events, and activities just waiting for someone to register; the list of options for involvement, connecting and […]

Ageism Focus for the 2018 Friedman Lecture

The Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging at the Institute for Public Health hosted the 18th Annual Friedman Lecture & Awards on April 20 at the Eric P. Newman Education Center on the Washington University School of Medicine campus. The event’s keynote speaker was Becca Levy, PhD, Professor of Public Health and Psychology at Yale […]

Finding purpose through volunteering

At the time of publishing, Jeanie Bryant worked with the Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging at Institute for Public Health As we celebrate Older Americans Month, I have been thinking about what it means to be an older person. In 2017, when I retired at the age of 65, I did not think of […]

Older Americans Month 2018: Engage at every age

Written by the Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging team It’s time to celebrate the many ways in which older adults make a difference in our communities.  Across the country, older Americans are taking part in activities that promote wellness and social connection. They are sharing their wisdom and experience with future generations, and they […]

Tailoring emergency care for older adults

Written by Jeannie Bryant, administrator, and Stephanie Herbers, manager of the Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging Emergencies happen. And for older persons and their families, navigating emergency departments can be stressful.  Christopher Carpenter, MD, Washington University emergency medicine faculty and physician, is working with colleagues to develop and implement new models for effective care. […]

Aging and public health

Written by Taylor R. Patskanick, master’s research fellow in aging, Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging at the Institute for Public Health Evidence-based public health includes the use of proven approaches to improve population health. Historically, public health interventions were not always scientifically-based. And in today’s increasingly connected, yet resource-scarce world, public health practice has […]

Choosing work in later life

Written by Taylor R. Patskanick, master’s research fellow in aging at the Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging at the Institute for Public Health Have you ever thought about how much of your life you will spend working? Now more than ever before, older Americans are living longer and working longer. The average age of […]

Entrepreneurship in later life

Written by Cal J. Halvorsen, MSW, doctoral student and the William E. Gordon Research Fellow at the Brown School I recently conducted an on-the-spot focus group among my geographically dispersed, early-30s friends in our online group chat. I asked them to describe an entrepreneur, giving me their initial, gut reactions. Responses centered on the image […]

Healthspan is more important than lifespan, so why don’t more people know about it?

Written by Tim Peterson, assistant professor in the Department of Medicine at Washington University in St. Louis  While more and more people are taking an interest in aging and lifespan, awareness on healthspan lags (Figure 2). If you don’t know what healthspan means you aren’t alone. What is healthspan? Many might agree that “healthspan” can […]

Shifting gears: aging & transportation planning

Written by Bailey Widener, graduate assistant at the Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging at the Institute for Public Health For many of us, our vehicles are essential to our daily lives. We use our cars to commute to our jobs, to run errands, to visit with family and friends, and to accomplish countless other […]

Become an advocate for seniors

Written by Mary Schaefer, executive director of the Mid-East Area Agency on Aging Missouri advocates are needed for seniors and senior programs. This past session of the Missouri legislature has clearly shown the need for our legislators and public officials to hear from their constituents about the value of seniors and the services that support […]

Aging out loud: finding courage to love

Written by Amy Sobrino, LMSW, program services coordinator at Memory Care Home Solutions When I think of this month’s theme of ‘Age out Loud,’ I think of bravery, courage, and challenging the status quo. There are countless examples of older adults ‘stepping outside’ of their comfort zone to challenge ageism. In my work with families […]

What is a NORC?

Written by Karen Berry-Elbert, manager at St. Louis NORC The vast majority of adults aged 65 and older still live in the homes in which they raised families and developed social networks. As the American population continues to age, more communities are home to growing populations of residents who have aged in place. In addition, […]

Old is in the eye of the beholder

Written by Nikki Goldstein, MSW, executive director for Crown Center for Senior Living As we recognize May as older adult month, it begs the question, what is an “older adult”? Older than who? Older than what? Isn’t everyone over the age of 21 an older adult? Other than Benjamin Button, aren’t we all aging? As […]

Age out loud – with Dementia?!

Written by Jill Cigliana, MSOT, OTR/L, program director at Memory Care Solutions I am often asked, “Is there really quality time when living with dementia?”  At my organization, Memory Care Home Solutions, we work with families to demonstrate that dementia is not an end to quality of life, but an opportunity to stay engaged and […]