Lifelong Learning

As life expectancy increases, more attention is being given to the meaning and purpose of later life. The NCCA aims to meet the developmental needs of older people through creative engagement, sense memory and self-expression. In this section you will find more information about Lifelong Learning programming, news, research, stories and more.

Tim Carpenter, Founder and Executive Director of EngAGE, has created an innovative housing development model bringing the arts to low and moderate income seniors.  The Burbank Senior Artists Colony in California boasts a theater group, an independent film company and a variety of courses in film

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, VA has grown exponentially since its beginning in 2001.  About 125 students registered in the OLLI program’s first semester.

“Marigold Hotel,” a film which stars actors in their 70s and is marketed to people over 50-years-old has already brought in $100 million in ticket sales, a feat many thought unimaginable.  Hollywood has been slow to market to older demographics, but with the rise in baby boomers, studios like Fo

As the population continues to age, there are more and more stories of adults doing amazing things.  Japanese mountaineer Tamae Watanabe, 73, recently broke her own world record by becoming the oldest woman to scale Mount Everest, a record she originally set at the age of 62 and plans to break a

Gregg Rochester, at 62, is a psychologist turned professional painter and he does not see himself retiring anytime soon. While Gregg’s career is truly his own, he had a great art role model and mentor in his mother.

Memory Arts Café is a new series of free art events for people living with Alzheimer’s disease, their caregivers and the general public. The series takes place on the 2nd Wednesday of each month and includes light refreshments and the opportunity to chat with the guest artists.

Don't miss out on your chance to win $5,000 to begin a new arts program, or a continue an exisiting one in your health care facility, school, or community setting! 

Gregg Rochester, at 62, is a psychologist turned professional painter and he does not see himself retiring anytime soon. While Gregg’s career is truly his own, he had a great art role model and mentor in his mother.

This workshop by Dance for Connection is designed to teach activity professionals, creative arts therapists, caregivers and others to create opportunities for people with dementia to dance and move joyfully.

TimeSlips is a ten-week storytelling intervention on dementia patients residing in long-term-care facilities. The TimeSlips program focuses on creative self-expression through group-generated stories for those with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.

This study evaluated whether the health benefits related to tango-dancing programs could also work with adults with Parkinson’s disease. This 13 week study assessed a control and intervention group in balance, falls and gait. Only those with Parkinson’s Disease improved in all three measures.

This study used interactive storytelling as an intervention to improve blood-pressure among African Americans. All of the participants had hypertension and were studied for six months.

One hundred and twenty two older adults participated in a theatrical intervention twice a week for four weeks. The training included multi-modal or cognitive-affective-physiological activities. The theatrical group was compared with a no-treatment control and a singing intervention.

This study evaluated the cognitive improvements associated with theatrical intervention in residents of a continuing care facility. Eighteen residents, ages 72-95, completed a theater arts course created to improve memory and promote healthy cognitive aging.

This study investigated the benefits that short-term theater can have on older adults’ cognitive functioning and psychological well-being. The participants, ages 60-86, engaged in one of three study conditions, theater arts, visual arts or no treatment.

Older adults, ages 62-85, participated in professional acting classes followed by rehearsals and performances for four weeks. The participants showed improvement in their mental/emotional states and had higher recall and recognition scores.

This pilot program evaluated the impact that jazz dance class instruction had on balance, cognition, and mood (specifically depression) in thirteen healthy, English-speaking older women.