Past Free Webcast – Senior Centers: Education, Engagement and Enrichment for the Third Age – September 17, 2020

By: Laura Hood, former Director, Aging Services Department and Whitney Senior Center, City of St. Cloud

Earn 1.00 hr. CEU, pre-approved for Social Workers by BOSW; self-submit other disciplines.
MGS is listed as a Continuing Education Resource by the MN Board of Nursing.
(The CEU is free for MGS members; $15 for non-members.)

Handout – Senior Centers for the Third Age 9.17.20

Senior Centers become the heartbeat of community connection for older adults.  They function as the “schoolhouse” for adults age 55 and older, providing relevant information on how to successfully age in place, building the tools for maintaining independence, self-determination, and growing new support systems at a time when many are losing partners, friends, and relatives.  Senior Centers serve as a one-stop shop for older adults to access education, enrichment, support services and connections to each other.

This webcast will discuss the expanded roles of Senior Centers:

  1. Education/enrichment locations for older adults seeking life-long learning opportunities once retired.
  2. Gateways for older adults to discover the service network that exists to support successful aging in place.
  3. Social hubs to connect older adults to each other and foster new informal support systems, friendships, and connections.
  4. Health and wellness location that supports management of chronic illness, maintenance of independence and recovery from health crisis.
  5. Representing older adults in community-wide initiatives.
  6. Providing consumer education opportunities to safeguard self, finance and avoid exploitation.
  7. Senior Centers are adapting and connecting virtually in the midst of the pandemic


Laura Hood served as the Director of the Aging Services Department and the Whitney Senior Center for the City of St. Cloud for nine years. In that role she was the leader responsible for the growth and evolution of the Whitney Senior Center into a multi-faceted service center for older adults. Laura currently serves as the Social Services Director for Country Manor Healthcare and Rehabilitation. She also serves as the Secretary of the MGS Board of Directors.