OMA at FSU: Spring 2024!

Our Spring 2024 semester has begun with an exciting start. We kicked off the semester with a series of events and workshops held in collaboration with the Scripps OMA team from Oxford, Ohio. Now, the Claude Pepper Center has launched our Spring 2024 OMA program! This Spring, thirteen Sociology student interns are paired with people living with dementia to create abstract art. Our OMA team conducted three trainings to involve as many interns and volunteers in our program, spreading the OMA mission across Tallahassee. In total, the Claude Pepper Center trained 21 interns and volunteers this January.

Evaluation of Our Program by ScrippsOMA

During the ScrippsOMA team visit, our program was evaluated by Dr. Elizabeth Lokon (Founder and Creator, OMA), Meghan Young (Associate Director, OMA) and Krysta Peterson (Assistant Director, OMA). The purpose of this observational evaluation was to ensure our program is effectively following the OMA vision of bringing autonomy, joy and connection to our artists. The Scripps team provided us with invaluable feedback, also reporting that our program is on the right track and authentic to the OMA model. We are grateful for the Scripps team for their guidance on how we can grow and develop our program even further.

Collaboration with the Claude Pepper Elder Law Clinic

We are excited to announce our collaboration with the Elder Law Clinic at Florida State University College of Law.

The clinic is a “holistic, interdisciplinary clinic focused on boosting the wellbeing and resilience of low-income older adults through legal advocacy and community education. Students enrolled in the clinic learn the basics of elder law while also working directly on cases and policy issues” (Source).

Our team visited FSU Law to train seven law and graduate students. The clinic students serve as art waitresses at OMA sessions, delivering supplies to the artists. This role allows them to meet people living with dementia, form connections with them, and observe important communication skills necessary in the field of Elder Law. The clinic also performs important advocacy activities in Tallahassee, such as outreach, policy work, and working with older adult clients across the city. Click here to learn more about the Claude Pepper Elder Law Clinic.

“When I learned about the OMA program I could not wait to get the Claude Pepper Elder Law Clinic involved. This is a beautiful program that focuses on the dignity and wellbeing of folks experiencing cognitive decline – one of the polestars of our clinic. Not only is this program a wonderful opportunity for the community, but it is also an invaluable experience for our law students who are learning how to be compassionate lawyers. I wish that more lawyers had the opportunity to work with the OMA program because it can help us develop a holistic and receptive skillset for assisting clients in a way that recognizes them as a whole person.” – Professor Rima Nathan, Director of the Claude Pepper Elder Law Clinic