According to the Association for Psychological Science, aging adults who take part in difficult tasks and learn new skills show more memory improvement than those who take part in less demanding mental activities.

Residents at The Palace Coral Gables and The Palace Suites Kendall in Florida are taking those findings to heart as they take place in college-level courses right in the comfort of their home.

Through a partnership with the University of Miami’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, residents at the two senior living communities are given the opportunity to learn about anything from basic computer skills to music appreciation. Each of the community’s activity directors coordinates with Osher Director Magda Vergara, Ph.D., to decide on the courses available based on the residents’ interests.

“It was a perfect partnership for us, and our residents enjoy learning in a relaxed and supportive environment,” said Adam Rosenblum, vice president of The Palace Group.

According to Vergara, the University of Miami’s OLLI is one of 123 in the country. In addition to the classes at The Palace communities, courses are offered on UM’s campus, too.

“Classes typically are 90 minutes, which is fairly strenuous for seniors, but this provides enough time to engage in discussion and ask questions,” Vergara said.

In the fall, The Palace Suites will become a satellite OLLI campus and courses will be available to the residents and the community at large, focusing on art appreciation, current events and history.

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