Hofstra University’s School of Health Professions and Human Services, its National Center for Suburban Studies, and the Glen Cove Senior Center are hosting a groundbreaking interdisciplinary conference that will examine the link between creativity, science and the aging brain and dispel the notion that growing older automatically means cognitive decline.
“Shifting the Perspective: Aging and Creativity” will be held Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016, from 8 am-7:30 pm in the Multipurpose Room, Sondra and David S. Mack Student Center, North Campus. The free daylong event will draw almost two dozen speakers and experts who will discuss the challenges of a booming senior population, explore new avenues to healthy aging, and demonstrate how a stronger link between generations is of greater benefit to society.
“We always focus on the implications of an aging population, emphasizing the financial, environmental, and caregiving burden, but there are other ways to think about aging,“ said Dr. Corinne Kyriacou, an associate professor in the Master of Health program and a key organizer of the conference. “Advanced age can be a time for chasing dreams you didn’t have time to chase while raising children or pursuing a career, a time to pursue hobbies or a second career, a time to give back to society and use the wisdom gathered to do good. This conference offers a uniquely in-depth look at these positive aspects of aging.”
The number of seniors in the United States is expected to almost double in the next three decades. More than 574,000 residents age 60 or older now live on Long Island, and in Nassau County, in particular, nearly a third of its population will be over 60 by 2024.
“The senior population is exploding around the globe, and people are living longer, even thirty years past retirement. We have to redefine what it means to grow older,” said Carol Waldman, executive director of the Glen Cove Senior Center. “Our perception of older people has discouraged our society from acknowledging and preparing for the very real future we face. We need to envision a world where human potential is not driven by numbers or deficiencies, but rather, the essence and spirit of what it means to be alive.”
“It is our hope that our conference will awaken and reinforce what is possible as we grow older and spark conversation that supports broader and more positive realities that will encourage a deeper investment in resources for creative aging for us all,” she added.
Participating institutions include the United Nations, Northwell Health, New York City Department for the Aging, UC San Diego School of Medicine, Stony Brook University, New York Institute of Technology, and Hofstra University. Entrepreneurs and scholars in creative venues such as art, music, dance, entertainment, fashion, cooking and technology will also present workshops and share their success stories.
Session highlights of the full schedule include:
- “A UN Convention on the Rights of Older Persons: Current Developments and Debates”
- “Aging is a Creative Process: A Look Inside the Aging Brain”
- “Art Therapy for Older Adults and Their Partners”
- “Dancing Through the Ages”
- “Creativity, Beauty and Fashion – in New York Style”
- “The Intersection of Arts, Age, and Technology”
- “Sweet and Savory Pathway to Creativity”
- “Senior Moments” radio show panel
- “Music and Medicine: How I Made Carnegie Hall and Medicare in the Same Month”
The day’s events will end with a special talk with actor Dominic Chianese, 85, best known for his role as Corrado “Junior” Soprano on the hit HBO series, The Sopranos. He will discuss his work with the Joy Through Art Foundation, which highlights the positive effects of music and human contact through impromptu theatrical intergenerational performances designed to entertain, stimulate and engage nursing home residents.
The all-day conference is free and open to the public with registration. For more information, visit Hofstra.edu/aging-creativity or contact Dr. Corinne Kyriacou (516-463-4553) at Hofstra or Carol Waldman at the Glen Cove Senior Center (516-759-9610).
The “Shifting the Perspective: Aging and Creativity” conference is made possible through the generous support of sponsors including the Glen Cove SAGE Foundation, Schein Family Charitable Fund, The Pratt Pavilion at Glengariff Healthcare Center, AgeWell, Parker Jewish Institute, the law offices of Ann-Margaret Carrozza, Northwell Health System, Apple Bank, Atria Senior Living at Glen Cove, Bristal Assisted Living, Eric & Sandra Krasnoff, Hector & Leona DelValle, Jadwiga & Donald Brown, Long Island Community Foundation, PSEG Long Island, The Regency Assisted Living of Glen Cove, and St. John’s of Lattingtown.