As a junior in college, I interned for Senior Living Residences in Braintree MA in the marketing department, and also had the opportunity to work at one of their Assisted Living communities, Cornerstone at Canton. Before my internship, I had no idea that seniors had access to different housing options. I believed that a nursing home was the only option; I had never heard of Assisted Living. I also believed that doctors were the only type of caregivers for elderly. Boy, was I wrong on all counts!
After discovering what Assisted Living communities offer to the people who live there, it was hard not to make some obvious comparisons between college life and the assisted living lifestyle.
How Does an Assisted Living Resident’s Day Compare to a College Student’s
In my observations, a day in the life of an assisted living resident is filled with many activities, educational programs, and endless events that seniors get to enjoy. This is similar to college that also offers a wide array of intriguing activities. But the difference is that Assisted Living residents are not only encouraged to find their personal interests, their opinions matter about what they would like to discuss or see in a program every day. My liberal arts college required me to take courses about topics I knew I would never have any interest in. It made me want to transfer to Assisted Living!
At the time I asked my co-intern if he agreed. This is how he put it: “I now believe that Assisted Living really does become someone’s home. I look around and see large beautiful apartments that seniors get to decorate, and many staff members who have so much to offer. Residents get to decide how to spend their time every single day. I’m jealous, because I am constantly studying and have many responsibilities on top of my schoolwork.
Assisted Living gives older people the freedom to simply relax and not worry about responsibilities. The staff takes care of everything, including the cooking, cleaning and laundry. Also, living in a dorm with so many people can be overwhelming at times. The spacious private apartments of Assisted Living, not to mention all the comfortable and luxurious common rooms, is like a breath of fresh air. Personally, I would much rather live as an Assisted Living resident than a college student!”
Now that I work in Assisted Living and know so much more about everything it has to offer, it is clear to me where I would want my Mom to live should the need arise. These communities offer so much more than just an apartment. I love walking into our communities now and seeing the smiles on the faces of our residents. I watch them hang with their friends during “Happy Hour” at the pub and listen to them making jokes about their age while they sip on wine. Sign me up!