How Seniors Can Overcome “Techfusion” and Learn New Tech Skills
August 16, 2021
Hosted by Ron Roel
Like it or not, the pandemic has pushed many of us into the virtual world every day—a constant barrage of technology, from Zoom meetings, to webinars, online programs and projects, internet searches, emails, texts and social media. Of course, in a time of social distancing and often isolation, technology has been an essential tool in keeping us connected and productive. At the same time, it’s often challenging, complicated, confusing, and well, exasperating, when we can’t figure out how to use our devices at critical moments. And it can be especially hard for older folks—those who are decidedly not “digital natives” and may struggle to learn and keep up with high tech skills. In today’s episode, two experienced experts, Wendy Weiss and Robyn Berger-Gaston, will talk about how to help seniors (and perhaps the rest of us) embrace technology and avoid being overwhelmed by “techfusion.” Wendy, a former Wall Street professional, is an entrepreneur who provides personalized technology training to individuals and businesses on the use of everyday technological devices. Robyn, for her part, oversees several programs for a large Long Island nonprofit agency, including SeniorNet, which provides computer and technology training for people ages 50 and over. Together, they will address a range of issues, programs and approaches to help seniors learn new tech skills. What are the biggest challenges and needs? What kinds of courses, one-on-one classes and intergenerational programs are most effective? Where can people get “tech tips” and other useful resources? And when people are overwhelmed, how can you encourage and instill the confidence in them, that they can manage technology—and enhance their lives in the process?
Monday at 12 Noon Pacific Time on VoiceAmerica Variety Channel
Thanks to advances in medicine and health, most of us are just at half-life when we reach our mid-40s, with many potentially productive years ahead. But there’s no road map to prepare us for this period. That’s where 45 Forward comes in.
My show provides you with strategies to shift the traditional waiting-for-retirement model to a journey of compelling life chapters. Each show tackles an aspect of health, finance, family and friends, housing, work and personal pursuits as part of an integrated plan. Experts discuss topics like revitalizing relationships, creating mini-retirements, managing the maze of technology, finding your next homestead and caring for aging parents.
The show instills confidence, and hopefully some comfort, amid the stresses permeating today’s society. Fear of the future is not knowing how to prepare for it. 45 Forward does not proffer prefabricated answers, but helps you shape your life amid the daily anxieties of our time.
I’m a veteran journalist who spent a wide-ranging career covering business, politics and social issues, the last two decades focusing on the blend of diverse life skills I call successful aging.
I have written extensively on aging topics, spoken at conferences, radio and TV shows, and launched several entrepreneurial ventures, discovering along the way that the path to aging well also requires an unexpected entrepreneurial vision. I spent 20 years as a writer and editor at Long Island’s daily newspaper, Newsday, helping to found Act 2, a weekly section for 50-plus readers. I created Roelresources.com, a website offering practical advice and inspirational essays for people ages 40 and above. I have been a volunteer and consultant to AARP Long Island, writing articles, advocating for seniors, and developing action plans for the AARP Age-Friendly Communities initiative.
I am active in programs and organizations that support seniors, such as the National Aging In Place Council and the Senior Umbrella Network. I have developed a special expertise in family caregiving, as one of four brothers who took care of their mother for almost 25 years. I regularly collaborate with many professionals who provide services and support for older Americans, and I am completing a book for caregivers on Long Island, “The Caregiving Navigator/How to Plan, What to do, and Where to Turn When Caring for you Aging Loved Ones. And Yourself,” scheduled for publication in early 2021.