How is social media altering relationships?

"The intervention of social media and 'smart technology' has resulted in human beings preferring engagement in mediated communications. This results in less reliance on the five primary senses acting in concert while interacting socially, a key to empathy. The result may be less honest relationships."


Lori Wagner​​

The Need

There is a concern that since the advent of the smartphone, obsessions with texting, updating statuses, and using Snapchat are sounding a death knell for real conversation. Conversation is a skill that must be learned, so those most at risk for failing to learn this skill are the young, whose only experience has been in a world in which their social lives were conducted through mediated communication. If they do not know how long to hold eye contact, or how to sustain a face-to-face conversation, how will they fare in the world?


University Program

The Benefits

•    Build fundamental skills, such as respect and empathy,
•    Strengthen social-emotional intelligence
•    Acquire interviewing, listening, writing, public speaking skills
•    Participate in a novel experiential learning curriculum
•    Diminish marginalizing stereotypes about both young and old
•    Gain a more personal historical perspective
•    Form meaningful relationships free from invasive technologies
•    Internalize a sense of connection with the community
•    Feel encouraged to ask questions and develop interest in others
•    Receive support from a non-judgmental mentoring relationship
•    Develop an awareness of age-related discrimination