College of Education and Human Services students host Brookdale Murray’s Fall Festival
By Claire Layne | Nov 6, 2023
MURRAY, Ky. – Dr. Kimberly Vigil’s PHE 320 (Healthy Aging) students in Murray State University’s College of Education and Human Services recently volunteered to host Brookdale Murray’s Fall Festival over the month of October. It was an opportunity for residents to engage in physical and social activities set up by students, while also being supervised by Brookdale staff. Families from the neighborhood were invited to dress up and bring their kids to join in the fun activities set up in the Brookdale parking lot and inside the lobby. Everyone participated in games such as beach ball bowling, modified basketball, multi-age ring toss, cornhole, super tic tac toe along with board games, trivia and Wii Sports. A popcorn machine and shaved ice booth were also set up for participants to enjoy.
Students were able to put what they learned into practice by demonstrating engaging activities that were versatile for individuals with physical disabilities. The class focuses on physical, mental, social, and emotional aspects of growing older with a focus on healthy aging. It is a service-learning course, which means students gain hands-on experience during the semester by planning and leading a recreation program for senior citizens.
Resident Programs Coordinator Eric Whitaker commented, “This has been a wonderful collaboration and I’m excited to see where it leads in the future. I’d love to get a lot more MSU involvement here. The majority of people, both staff and residents, have only known a post-COVID Brookdale so it has been nice starting to get things back to a close-to-normal.”
“One of our overarching goals within the Health and Physical Education (HPE) program is to provide our students with school and community-based experiential learning,” Vigil said. “This mutually beneficial partnership with Brookdale has allowed just that: our health and physical education students were able to be involved in the community, apply their understanding of course content, and even go a step further and engage in critical thinking to ensure activities were both appropriate and meaningful to all of the participants.”