2023 OMEGA Summit Gives High Schoolers Chance to Think About Intergen Programming
by Adam Felts
The AgeLab held its annual OMEGA Summit on October 28th, which provides an opportunity for younger people to learn more about and brainstorm intergenerational programming. The OMEGA Summit inaugurates a season of programming hosted by the MIT AgeLab to help students develop intergenerational programs in their communities and prepare to apply for the OMEGA scholarship in late spring.
This year’s OMEGA Summit featured a panel of founders of and participants in successful intergenerational programs. Patti Russo, founder of Partners in Rhyme, a program that uses poetry to bring younger and older adults together; Meilynn Teng, a high schooler who participates in Partners in Rhyme; Jan Shafer, a retired elementary school teacher who also participates in Partners in Rhyme; and Diya Hundiwala, who is Vice President of Teens Teach Technology, a youth-led organization with national reach dedicated to bridging the generational gap and teaching older adults the basics of technology. AgeLab researcher Adam Felts moderated the panel, asking participants about their experiences with these programs.
High schoolers who attended the Summit were organized into groups to brainstorm policies, programs, spaces, or other ideas to bring younger and older adults together. The groups briefly presented the ideas they had developed. Some projects they presented included an intergenerational community garden, a food delivery service for older people staffed by high schoolers, and a pet therapy program.
Stay tuned for updates about upcoming OMEGA programming and the OMEGA scholarship here.