Center on Aging
Senior Mentor Program
The Senior Mentor Program connects medical students from the Medical University of South Carolina with people aged 65 years and older living in the Charleston, SC area. The goals of the program are:
- Provide a learning experience for MUSC medical students
- Help reduce stereotypes about aging
- Improve the way future doctors care for older persons
The target population of the program is MUSC’s undergraduate medical students. Over the next 20 years, 10,000 “baby boomers” will turn 65 every day, resulting in 78 million more elderly individuals in the United States alone.
Students currently entering and completing medical school will increasingly be called upon to treat an aging population. The rationale for exposing undergraduate medical students to healthy, community dwelling elders through a long-term program is to provide a patient contact experience early in medical training, to improve knowledge of aging, and to have a positive effect on students’ attitudes toward caring for older adults.
Students are paired with "healthy" seniors in the community and they are given a series of assignments that they will be completing based on interactions with their mentors, that relate to what they have learned in the classroom. Some of the assignments involve skills such as:
- Taking a medical history
- Performing a blood pressure screening
- Performing a fall risk assessment
- Completing a nutritional analysis
The program is specifically designed for an in home setting where both parties are comfortable and are able to learn in a non-clinical setting.
If you are interested in becoming a senior mentor or have any questions about the program,
please call us at 843-792-5862 or visit the Senior Mentor Program Website at: www.musc.edu/senior