Aging Series 2020 | WAMC

Aging Series 2020

Hugh Johnson
Jim Levulis / WAMC

According to the U.S. Senate’s Special Committee on Aging, the number of Americans over the age of 55 in the labor force will reach 42 million in 2026, or nearly a quarter of the nation’s workforce. That’s compared to fewer than 36 million in 2016. Now, that data was compiled before the COVID-19 pandemic, involving a virus that has led to more serious complications and mortality when contracted by seniors. As part of WAMC's special series on aging and to better understand how the pandemic and the reactions to it have impacted the economic outlook for older Americans, Jim Levulis sat down with a familiar voice on WAMC's airwaves – Hugh Johnson, chairman and chief investment officer of Hugh Johnson Advisors in Albany. 

Zoom call interview with WAMC's Jackie Orchard, her brother in law Trong Nguyen, her sister Alexandra Nguyen, her nephew Fynn Thau Nguyen, and her grandparents in law Thau and Hai Nguyen.
Jackie Orchard / WAMC

In many parts of the United States, multi-generational households are a thing of the past. As young professionals move out and move away, parents and grandparents are often left behind. In part seven of our special series on aging, WAMC’s Jackie Orchard learns about the importance of grandparents in one culture.

Exploring Opera: Jewish Treasures
Jesse King / WAMC

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to shutter senior centers to in-person activities, many organizations are scrambling to keep their members engaged at home. WAMC’s Jesse King has part seven of our special series on aging. 

Volunteers fill delivery bags with produce at the Saratoga Senior Center
Lucas Willard / WAMC

The Saratoga Senior Center normally provides hundreds of local residents with a place to socialize, exercise, or get a hot meal. But during the COVID-19 pandemic, the facility had to change the way it operates. For the latest installment of WAMC’s series on aging, reporter Lucas Willard learned about one of the critical services the senior center provides, even as its financial future remains uncertain.

Planned entry to Broadview Senior Living at Purchase College
Courtesy of Broadview

Senior residential learning communities are a fairly new trend in senior living options in the U.S. So far, the only one in the tristate area will be at SUNY Purchase in Westchester County. Shovels have not yet hit the ground for the on-campus specialized community, but a few of the future residents are already participating in activities and cannot wait for move-in day.

closed door of the Jordan Senior Center
Paul Tuthill / WAMC

For elders in big cities and small towns, senior centers offered a respite from home. The senior center was a place to go and talk with other people, take a class, exercise, and eat a meal.

Bradley Mohr during a summer fishing trip in the Adirondacks.
Bradley Mohr

This year has been difficult for everyone. While COVID-19 may have forced people to spend more time apart from family and friends, three active seniors living in the city of Albany have found ways to cope with social isolation.

Four smiling people and a dog are in a tent made of blue tarps
Josh Landes / WAMC

Americans are living longer. For people already on the fringes, that poses a variety of new challenges. In the second part of our special series on aging, we meet a community of unhoused people living in a public park in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. WAMC Berkshire Bureau Chief Josh Landes got to know the residents of an encampment who have become the focal point of a local debate over how to provide for the neediest during the COVID-19 pandemic – and how they think about their lives as they age.

Adirondack 46er Phil Corell at the high elevation sign of CATS' High Point Trail
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Americans are living — and working, and playing, and battling illness — longer. In the first part of our special series on aging, we meet an avid hiker who has hiked all of New York’s highest peaks, not just once but more than 20 times. Now 74, he is still climbing mountains. WAMC North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley, who is better at leisurely walks, met Adirondack 46er Phil Corell this fall at a low elevation hiking trail to talk with him about his experiences and why he’s still hiking in his seventh decade.