Nazareth Students Move into St. John’s Meadows

Two Nazareth University students have moved into St. John’s Meadows for three weeks of their semester to understand and experience a senior living community.

Dr. Steitz with Sarah Daddona and Samantha Catholdi

Sarah Daddona and Samantha Catholdi have participated in Gerontology classes taught by Dr. David Steitz, who says learning should not only be confined within the walls of a classroom. Dr. Steitz has partnered with St. John’s for over 14 years, offering evening classes at St. John’s Meadows that allow his Nazareth students and independent living residents to interact, providing the perfect environment for intergenerational learning.

This year things are a little different. Though the resident and Nazareth University student class offered Tuesday evenings is ongoing, Daddona and Catholdi, seniors minoring in Gerontology, are staying together in a guest suite at St. John’s Meadows to ensure they get the full experience of an independent senior living community. They eat with residents as well as attend activities like aquatic volleyball.

Watch: 13 WHAM’s seniors living with seniors: Nazareth University offers unique academic experience at local retirement community

Daddona and Catholdi pose in their “dorm room” on moving day

“We’re pretty much acting like a resident here,” said Daddona. “We eat with them, we do activities with them, and we just chat with them.”

Many residents enjoy the new company and agree that this provides a unique learning experience for the students and themselves.

Resident Patricia Corcoran said there is no better way to learn what it is like to live here than actually living on campus. “We look forward to it, and we wish they were staying for longer than three weeks,” Corcoran said.

Watch: WROC’s Nazareth University offers program for students to live at senior living facility

Tony Zaccaglino, vice president of senior housing at St. John’s, said he is hopeful the program will continue into future semesters.

Read: St. John’s/Nazareth Program Highlighted in Rochester Business Journal

Listen: Participants from St. John’s Collaborative for Intergenerational Learning on WXXI Radio


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