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Center on Aging

2013 Personhood & Dementia Workshop

The workshop, presented on April 23, 2013, by the Center on Aging in the College of Human Ecology at Kansas State University, targeted caregivers and focused on learning to interact with persons with dementia. It was free and open to the public.

The first speaker was Dan Cohen, founder and executive director of Music and Memory, a nonprofit organization that promotes the use of digital music technology to improve the lives of the elderly and cognitively impaired. Cohen has a master’s in social work.

He looked at the use of music as a therapeutic intervention in caring for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia. His work is featured in the documentary, "Alive Inside."

Dan Cohen

Founder and Executive Director, Music and Memory

The second keynote speaker was Jim Vanden Bosch, founder and executive director of Terra Nova Films Inc., a not-for-profit company specializing in the production and distribution of documentaries and educational videos. Using video clips, he compared how Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia are perceived today and how that perception impacts the lives of caregivers and those who have a dementia disability.

Jim Vanden Bosch

Terra Nova Films, Inc.

One of the panelists was Teresa Radebaugh, director of Wichita State University’s Regional Institute on Aging and the Carol and Rozina Cassat professor in aging. Panelists from Kansas State University included Rick Scheidt, professor of family studies and human services, and Teri Holmberg, music therapist with the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance. Other panelists included Cindy Miller with the Alzheimer’s Association; Amanda Rall, an independent living leader at Meadowlark Hills in Manhattan with expertise in providing care for persons with dementia; and Judy Roth, who has seen how the Music and Memory programs works with individuals with Alzheimer’s. Ryan Grace, administrator at Santa Marta, a continuing care retirement community in Kansas City, unfortunately couldn't make it to the event due to the weather.

Panel Discussion

The workshop was partially made possible by the Edna C. Richardson Fund, the Joyce Rawlins Jenkins Excellence Fund in Gerontology and the life span human development unit of Kansas State University’s School of Family Studies and Human Services.