Issue Highlights

Articles: President's Notes *** Meet the New Director of Clemson University Emeritus College *** TCU Retiree Volunteering and Service: Member Survey Results *** A Virtual Eleventh Campus: The Ninth Inventory of University of California Emeriti Activity 2015–2018

Resources and Trends: Age Friendly University Free Webinars ***  Wisdom: A Customized Resource in Aging *** Teaching Older Americans to Identify Fake News Online *** Educational Attainment and Later Life Cognitive Functioning *** Navigating the Identity-Changing Transition into Retirement *** Aging Well: Strong Relationships

Come Join Us In Transforming Retirement ***Tell Us Your Story *** About AROHE

President's Notes

Greetings to all,

It's a celebratory time of year! Commencement – a time of pride and admiration for the many sacrifices our students and families make in the pursuit of their dreams and education. As we edge into the end of another academic year for many institutions, we wish to extend a congratulatory note to those celebrating commencement this month.

Educator and philosopher, Howard Thurman, once said, “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive and then go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” As academicians, administrators and dedicated staff members in higher education, we can agree that every day there is something very powerful that makes us feel vibrantly alive. Meaningful opportunities to make a difference well beyond into our retirement years will always abound.

In the United States, it's also another great reason to celebrate as the Administration for Community Living leads the nation’s observance of Older Americans Month (OAM) during the month of May. This year’s theme encourages older adults to Connect, Create, Contribute.

In the spirit of this observation, we also want to take a moment to celebrate and thank YOU, our membership community, for your efforts to engage retirees in meaningful ways through your respective retirement organizations. As ambassadors of higher education, our passion is to make the world a better place through education is undeniable.

To that end, AROHE is always looking to highlight our constituents’ successes, and we invite you to share your stories in our upcoming newsletters of how your members are connecting, creating and contributing well into their retirement journey. We look forward to hearing from you soon! 

Warm regards,

Trudy Fernandez

President, AROHE

Meet the New Director of Clemson University Emeritus College

The Clemson University Emeritus College is proud to announce the appointment of new director, Dr. Debra B. Jackson, Professor Emerita of Nursing, effective January 2, 2019. Dr. Jackson joined the School of Nursing faculty in 1991 after 19 years at Emory University. She served as Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and Assistant to the President at Clemson University prior to her retirement in 2017. During her very accomplished career, in addition to three edited textbooks in nursing, Dr. Jackson has published numerous book chapters, articles, and patient materials. 

When asked about her new role, Debbie replied, “I am in the perfect job! I am amazed at the new challenges and areas of interest that Clemson faculty have developed in the emeritus phase of their careers. They continue to pursue their research and scholarship and to explore new disciplines. My primary goals are to provide the Emeritus faculty with a physical environment where they can grow and collaborate and to develop new areas for participation within the university.” Debbie is already redesigning our space to accommodate small and large group gatherings and expanding activities to include programming like musical events and informal roundtable discussions. 

Debbie brings experience and a creative energy that will energize the College and under her leadership, we will continue to serve the university while enjoying a rich and engaged retirement. Welcome, Dr. Jackson! For more information: dbj@clemson.edu; https://www.clemson.edu/emerituscollege/ 

TCU Retiree Volunteering and Service: Member Survey Results 

Recently we polled our membership to ascertain what role our Association might play in facilitating retirees’ service activities. We gathered information from 114 survey participants, representing about 20% of all members who receive email correspondence from the Association.

The survey revealed that we are engaged in over 80 different areas, including churches, courts and prisons, libraries, gardens, museums, schools, political organizations, environmental agencies, neighborhoods, health agencies and hospices. Most frequently mentioned were church-associated activities, Meals on Wheels, and serving as a board member for non-profits.

Even though 45% said they are already very committed or otherwise occupied, many showed moderate or high interest in serving beyond their current levels. Nearly 50% indicated that they would participate in one-time service events; 25% report that they have time to learn about new volunteering opportunities and 12% would appreciate TCURA support for seeking volunteer and service opportunities. 

Given these findings, the task force on volunteering and service recommended the following: 

1. Coordinating with our Director of Community Engagement, who assists student groups, to match them with volunteering opportunities, so that she can include TCU retirees by notifying us of upcoming events and helping us connect with agencies in need and their leaders; 

2. Publishing service opportunities as part of our newsletter and/or website;

3. Creating a forum where retirees can share descriptions of their service activities and invite colleagues to join them;

4. Explaining in more detail ways that corporations and other universities match volunteers’ professional skills with non-profit agency needs, to initiate consulting projects that may entail pro-bono work, or part time employment in some cases;

5. Seeking individuals interested in coordinating further with the Community Engagement office, and/or helping mobilize retirees for one-time events.

For more information, contact Janel George Herald at jgherald@gmail.com

A Virtual Eleventh Campus: The Ninth Inventory of University of California Emeriti Activity 2015–2018

This report summarizes the findings of the ninth triennial survey of University of California emeriti activity. It was conducted in the Fall of 2018. The intent of the survey was to develop an inventory of the teaching, research and creative work, as well as the community service that UC emeriti have done during the academic years 2015–2018. This project is grounded in the premise that the University of California’s preeminence derives from the work of its faculty. In earlier decades, it was the faculty’s steady achievement in research and in the preparation of students that gained national and global recognition for the University. Most of the faculty who were instrumental in this movement are now retired; however, for many, their contributions to the mission of the University go on. This survey offers the evidence of this. A systematic attempt was made to contact virtually all UC emeriti (more than 6,000 individuals) to encourage their participation in this project and 2,024 of them responded. This inventory provides impressive support for the claim that, when viewed in the aggregate, the teaching, the scholarship and the community work of UC emeriti during this period is equivalent to that of a major university. Their contributions to the mission of the University of California amount to a virtual eleventh campus

An estimated total of 6,030 UC emeriti were individually contacted and encouraged to participate in the survey. Most were contacted by email and completed an online survey instrument. The remainder, those who expressed this preference, received their surveys in the mail, completed them and returned them in the mail. This group is approximately 10% of the respondents.

UC emeriti taught just under 1,000 undergraduate classes and more than 1,000 graduate classes in the UC system during 2015–2018. By a conservative estimate, this is the equivalent of approximately 500 full-time UC faculty.

Accomplishments of University of California Emeriti during 2015–2018: • 574 honored and/or recognized for their contributions • 1,218 published journal articles • 324 taught UC undergraduate courses • 372 taught UC graduate courses • 486 served as advisors and mentors •  485 provided service to UC in various ways • 419 authored or co-authored books • 1,120 presented conference papers • 1,300 have work in progress • 807 used their expertise in pro bono work • 1,009 were active in their professional associations • 461 served on editorial boards.

For more information, go to http://cucea.ucsd.edu/documents/CUCEA2015-18.pdf

Click to return to the Issue Highlights.


Resources and Trends

Age Friendly University Free Webinars

The Gerontological Society of America’s Academy for Gerontology in Higher Education (AGHE) has made available for free the recent webinars on the 10 principles educational institutions can use to evaluate and develop age-friendly programs, policies, and partnerships across their campuses. All webinars are archived and can be accessed at www.geron.org/webinar. For more information, contact Joann Montepare at 617-663-7006 or jmontepare@lasell.edu.

Wisdom: A Customized Resource in Aging

One of the joys of aging is to share the resources acquired from a lifetime of world experience. We often call these resources wisdom. Yet, the paradox of wisdom is that although many people grow old, they do not all share the same kind of wisdom. And this is because wisdom can take many forms. Not all wise older people vote for the same candidates, save carefully for retirement, or rise as exemplars of virtue within their families. Some old people are grumpy, self-centered, or silly. But as Mark Agronin writes, despite difficulties and differences, some form of wisdom may be found in each of us as we age. Perhaps it is the knowledge of how to make another person feel valued, or it is the ability to help another get her prescriptions filled, or perhaps it is filling out a tax form for someone who cannot. Paul Baltes, a well-known German gerontologist, believed that wisdom was a form of applied expert knowledge that springs from years of living, despite inevitable losses.

Wisdom can take the form of making good pragmatic decisions, developing empathy and the ability to care for others, or it may be a wellspring of creativity that could be applied to artistic crafts, relationships or other activities. Perhaps wisdom takes a turn to the spiritual, or to naturalistic concerns that center on animals, plants or the Earth itself. For older people wisdom is protective. Being wise about one’s place on earth, one’s limitations and advantages, and knowing that we are here as a gift of other generations, and humble about our importance in the universe, leads us to feelings of well-being and contentment. “Wisdom is always growing, changing and offering us new opportunities. It is up to each one of us to choose – to realize that aging can be less of a problem and more of a solution to life’s inevitable challenges.”

From: Like Intelligence, Wisdom Comes in Many Forms by Marc E. Agronin. Aging Today, January-February, 2019, pg. 3

Teaching Older Americans to Identify Fake News Online

According to recent studies, older Americans have played an outsize role in the spread of disinformation online. In the lead-up to the 2016 election, adults over 65 were seven times more likely than those under 29 to post articles from fake news domains. In this article, the first in a series, Visiting Scholar Susan Nash explores the latest research and offers possible solutions to this growing problem.

To learn more, go to https://tinyurl.com/y4oo46e5.

Educational Attainment and Later Life Cognitive Functioning

The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) Journal of Psychology recently reported on a study examining reports of declining increases in cognitive impairment among older U.S. older adults and educational attainment. The discussion noted compression of cognitive morbidity is seen among the highly educated, and increasing educational opportunities may be an important strategy for decreasing the risk for cognitive impairment in later life. To learn more, go to J Gerontology B Psychol Sci Soc Sci, 2019, Vol. 74, No. 3, 536-545.

Navigating the Identity-Changing Transition into Retirement

In the April 9, 2019 issue of the The Week magazine, Sara Lindberg enumerated seven pieces of advice for successful retirement transitions: Grieve your working self, change how you define productivity, consider becoming a mentor, get serious about your hobbies, give back to your community, embrace free time, and try out new identities. To read further, go to https://tinyurl.com/y584u3vw

Aging Well: Strong Relationships

In an article in GSA’s The Journal of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Science, researchers at The University of Texas (Austin) have found that older adults who spend more time interacting with a wide range of people were more likely to be physically active and had greater emotional well-being. “Adults often grow less physically active and more sedentary as they age, and these behaviors pose a risk factor for disease and death,” said Karen Fingerman, PhD, FGSA, a professor of human development and family sciences at UT Austin and the director of the university’s new Texas Aging & Longevity Center. Philips Lifeline news also reported on Advice for Aging Well: Build and tend strong relationships. To read more, go to https://tinyurl.com/y4sbnhux.

Come Join Us In Transforming Retirement

Since 2001 AROHE has supported both institutions and individuals by transforming the experience of retirement – the preparation, the actual transition, and post-retirement programming – into a smooth and productive life-course change.

To renew, join or learn more visit arohe.org or contact AROHE by emailing info@arohe.org or calling (213) 740-5037.

Tell Us Your Story

Share News, Activities, and Events of Your Retirement Organization

Please send us a note about the activities, events, and news of your retirement organization for inclusion in AROHE Matters. Send your information to our newsletter editor at pcullinane@berkeley.edu by June 17th for the July 2019 newsletter.

About AROHE

AROHE's mantra is "Transforming Retirement."

AROHE is a nonprofit association that champions transformative practices to support all stages of faculty and staff retirement, their mutually beneficial engagement, and continuing contributions to their academic institutions. By sharing research, innovative ideas, and successful practices, AROHE emphasizes the development and enhancement of campus-based retiree organizations and programs which support this continuing engagement in higher education.

Contact AROHE: email info@arohe.org or call 213-740-5037

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software