The University of Southern Indiana and SWIRCA and More, the local agency on aging, will present the 12th annual Mid-America Institute on Aging and Wellness (MAIA) on the USI campus on Thursday, August 8 and Friday, August 9, with a pre-conference workshop on Alzheimer’s disease and dementia care scheduled for Wednesday, August 7.
MAIA is a two-day gerontology conference for health care and social service professionals, health care administrators, clinicians, older adults or retirees, family members providing care for a loved one, students and anyone who wants to learn tips for leading a healthier life. Each year, national and local speakers provide practical tools and ground-breaking information related to successful aging and wellness.
The conference this year will feature four keynote speakers: Emily Allen, Greg O’Brien, Harley Gordon, and Dr. Tim Brimmer. Teepa Snow will facilitate the pre-conference workshop.
Emily Allen, senior vice president, programs for the national AARP Foundation, will open the conference at 8:30 a.m. Thursday, August 8. Throughout her career, her primary passion has been on serving the needs of those most at risk in our communities. In her current role, she oversees the AARP Foundation’s programmatic portfolio that focuses on increasing economic opportunity and social connections for low-income older adults. The title of her presentation is “A Future Without Senior Poverty.”
Harley Gordon is an attorney and nationally-recognized authority on long-term care financial issues. He has been voted one of the “100 Most Influential People in Long-Term Care” by McKnight’s Long-Term Care News. His views on the consequences of not having a plan for long-term care have been featured in the national media, including the PBS Frontline documentary, "Who Pays for Mom and Dad?," The Wall Street Journal, The Today Show, CNN and the CBS Evening News. Gordon's keynote will be at 3 p.m. Thursday, August 8.
Greg O’Brien is an investigative journalist and author diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's in 2009. He is the co-host of The Forgetting, an NPR podcast that talks about and demystifies Alzheimer’s disease. His memoir, On Pluto: Inside the Mind of Alzheimer's, has been described as "a book about living with Alzheimer's, not dying with it." During his riveting keynote presentation at the 2016 MAIA conference, O'Brien spoke on what it is like to slowly lose his memory and why he has decided to share his experience living with the illness. He is returning to Evansville for another candid, personal conversation about his journey with Alzheimer's. His keynote presentation is at 8:30 a.m. Friday, August 9,
Dr. Tim Brimmer, a professor of music at Butler University, Indianapolis, is executive director of SoundMinds, a non-profit formed to improve the health and quality of life of individuals through music, expressive arts and sound-safe environments. As a child, Tim was fascinated with music’s health benefits. Four decades of teaching, performing, conducting and researching music’s role in quality of life helped Dr. Brimmer bring a collaborative team of interdisciplinary colleagues, students and industry leaders together, alongside leading physicians, nurses and caregivers to create solutions for healthy aging. Dr. Brimmer's keynote will close the MAIA conference at 3 p.m. Friday, August 9.
Teepa Snow returns to lead a special pre-conference workshop on dementia for direct care providers on Wednesday, August 7 at USI. As one of America’s leading educators on dementia, Snow’s philosophy is reflective of her education, work experience, available medical research and first-hand caregiving interactions. Working as a registered occupational therapist for over 35 years, her wealth of experience has led her to develop Positive Approach® to Care techniques and training models that now are used by families and professionals working or living with dementia or other brain changes throughout the world.
Keynote presentations from Allen and O’Brien will be free and open to the public; however, due to seating limitations, advanced registration is required. Visit USI.edu/maia for information on reserving your spot in the free keynote presentations.
Break-out session topics for conference attendees over the two-day event include a variety of health topics plus exercise, gardening, estate planning, dementia care, mindfulness, elder abuse and mental health.
The deadline for a reduced registration fee is Tuesday, July 30. After that date, the rate increases for the pre-conference workshop and one- and two-day registrations. There is a discounted rate for students and retirees. More information about registering is online at USI.edu/maia or by calling 812-464-1989.