Explore the Power of Possibilities
Interns got a taste of what it was like to “walk in the shoes of seniors” at Cleveland State University. Under the direction of Dr. Mary Milidonis and graduate assistant Alexandra Talbott-Welch, students experienced the challenges of aging.
The interns felt the effects of arthritis by putting a few kernels of corn in your shoe and walking around with canes and walkers, or using wheelchairs. They also held their hand in ice water for 5 minutes to understand sensations of pain; and breathed through a straw while walking up stairs to simulate respiratory ailments.
The interns recorded their sensations on a chart and included their reflections in their journals. Interns realized that the challenges of navigating in public often force seniors with disabilities to stay inside. They also identified ways to effectively communicate with and on behalf of seniors as caregivers.
“The [interns] all worked very hard, effectively using their time, critically thinking, seeking out feedback and engaging as professionals. Congratulations! You have a highly motivated group who are committed to learning and innovating,” said Dr. Milidonis, head of CSU’s Gerontology Certificate Program. The Program allows students to get a multi-disciplinary study of theory, research, practice and policy on aging issues in a culturally diverse society in a state of the art health care facility.