Thursday, April 29, 2010

Lifelong Learning Thursday

Nancy Merz Nordstrom, author of Learning Later, Living Greater: The Secret of Making the Most of Your After 50 Years will share the benefits of Lifelong Learning on Thursdays.

The Secret for Making the Most of Your After-50 Years.

…a Health Club for Your Mind. Body and Spirit!

Now that we’ve looked at how other lifelong learners work within their communities, we’ll explore some ways to engage your talents and experience.

One of the best is Intergenerational Mentoring.

It’s another link between lifelong learning and community service. It has been said that one generation’s philosophy becomes the common sense of the next. That being the case, helping younger generations is one of the more valuable roles older lifelong learners can play in our society.

Older adults who belong to lifelong learning institutes often work with college undergraduate and graduate students. They also reach out into the community to work with elementary and high school students as mentors. Older learners many times initiate such programming, working together with community agencies and organizations.

By matching older adults with schoolchildren, these two generations share activities and in the process many stereotypes are broken down. Older adults benefit from this work in that they develop a greater sense of purpose and more self-esteem. Being so involved in the community also leads to more life satisfaction. At the same time, those being mentored learn more about getting older while increasing their own self-esteem, knowledge, skills, and motivation. And they also gain role models with incredibly valuable experience who can guide them into maturity.

Intergenerational programs also benefit the entire community. Participants pool resources and engage in creative problem solving to tackle social issues. Along the way, they find that respect for diversity and each other’s generational traditions has been growing.

Intergenerational community service work is so valuable to our society that The Center for Intergenerational Learning at Temple University seeks candidates to be trained to join its new Intergenerational Training Experts Network (ITEN).

The goal of the network will be to help build the capacity of nonprofit organizations to infuse intergenerational approaches into their programs and to engage more older adults in meaningful volunteer roles.


Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, a French philosopher and Jesuit priest said, Service to others is the rent we pay for the privilege of living on this earth. That is certainly one way to look at it. How much better our society would be if everyone subscribed to his theory.

For more information on Learning Later, Living Greater visit You can purchase Learning Later, Living Greater at

Till Next Time…


Anonymous said...

I enjoy these posts. You do a good job!

Anonymous said...

I enyou these posts. You do such a good job!