Older adults’ attitudes and decisions toward using a college campus and a senior center as a third place

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CONFERENCE: Academic Excellence Showcase Schedule

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Johnston, Raelynn; Kerwood, Renata; Wehr, Hannah
lecture / presentation description
The purpose of the current study is to understand the attitudes and decisions related to using a third place, where people can gather informally for psychological support through a shared sense of grounding, ease, comfort, friendliness, and mutual concern (Oldenburg, 1999). Through a case study design, we used mixed methods to collect data from senior center members to gain an understanding of how older adults use a senior center and a college campus as examples of third places. Data were analyzed utilizing focused coding of open-ended responses and descriptive statistics from the quantitative data. Findings revealed implications related to lack of awareness, communication, and perceived barriers, contributing to overall goals of supporting older adults aging in place through creating opportunities for them to feel engaged and empowered in their communities.