Key Takeaways:

Joyce, a learner from Chicago, has been taking advantage of the GetSetUp classes offered at no additional charge to her through her health plan, Aetna's SilverSneakers program. Despite initially stumbling upon the program by accident, she has found it to be a valuable resource for learning and social interaction.

"When my insurance from my employer changed to Aetna, they put us into SilverSneakers, which listed GetSetUp. I didn't know GetSetUp, I just was familiar with SilverSneakers, which I used to use to go to an exercise center," Joyce explains.

"At first, I was looking more for exercise classes, but then I saw the variety of classes on GetSetUp that are easily accessible through Zoom. Technology classes particularly piqued my interest because I like to keep my technical skills up."

Joyce has found the instruction on GetSetUp to be exceptional, even for learners of varying skill levels. 

"The instruction has been absolutely superior, given the different learner skill levels in each class," she notes. "I have been praising it and trying to get my sisters and other friends into it, and I'm telling them about all the varieties. It's like I enrolled in a university, and I go to classes."

Unveiling a Variety of Classes: Learning Beyond Expectations

Despite only starting in January 2023, Joyce has already taken a diverse range of classes, from yoga to resume writing. She has been particularly impressed by the global reach of the platform. 

Joyce retired several years ago and, like many others, found herself needing more mental stimulation during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

"I went with the rest of the world into COVID, and I realized that I needed more use of my mind," she recalls. "Since GetSetUp, I’ve taken classes on vision boards, and then I took one called " Taking A Leap" with Peg Breen. I started taking any class she has, and then I became more hopeful that age isn't a barrier."

Joyce's desire to keep her technology skills up-to-date has also been met through GetSetUp's classes. 

"I always want to keep up. I got an Apple Iphone, and I have been taking little small bite-size classes. I have added to that by taking the resume writing class with Kristine Kero, and I'm seriously looking to start applying for a new position," she explains.

Joyce felt her class on resume writing was like a personal coach and a real opportunity to have a chance to ask questions about her specific situation. 

"The thing I realized is that these technology skill sets help with volunteering, and I'm involved in volunteering with an organization using my work skills. GetSetUp is such a resource, especially considering the skill level of the instructors. Now I have people calling me asking about stuff, and I just updated that skill last week on GetSetUp.”

Joyce has even attended technology office hours just to hear the questions her peers are asking. While she didn’t go with questions, she often comes away with more insights into something she didn’t know before, and that’s been a positive experience for her. 

Breaking Isolation, Forging Connections: The Power of Zoom

While Joyce has a good foundation in technology, she acknowledges that things are constantly changing. 

"I'm still working on learning it, but the Microsoft Suite is constantly changing," she says. "Learning social media skills has made a difference. I took a recorded LinkedIn class from Peg Breen, and it helped me know how to shape my profile for future opportunities. Then her next class that was live, I had my questions answered."

A week after updating her profile, Joyce saw results. She said she was flooded with people who had seen her profile. Even though she had a strong background, the class helped shape her next goal of applying to a new position.  

Joyce has also found the Zoom platform to be a valuable tool for breaking down social isolation, which is especially important during the pandemic. 

"I think that the key connection is participating live in the Zoom sessions. Even though I have a car and can drive conveniently to a location, I don't always want to. The convenience and connectedness with Zoom help break the isolation,” she notes. "It's not the same as a phone call since you can see people, and I think it makes a difference.” 

Joyce also sees the potential of GetSetUp to help break isolation for others. 

"It's helping break isolation. I have a friend that physically can't leave the house. I am going to help her learn how to do the Zoom. It's interacting with people in a short amount of time that can make a difference. You are interacting, hearing others, and keeping your mind sharp. To me, that is the greatest benefit, and more and more seniors are used to using Zoom for this," she says.

Joyce is grateful for the opportunities that GetSetUp has provided her, and she is not alone. There are thousands of seniors like Joyce who are discovering the joys of learning new skills and staying connected with others through GetSetUp. The platform offers hundreds of interactive classes, covering everything from technology to health and wellness to personal development.

GetSetUp has been a lifeline for many older adults, especially during the pandemic when isolation and loneliness were at an all-time high. The platform's interactive classes have provided seniors with the opportunity to connect with others, learn new skills, and stay engaged and active.

GetSetUp's instructors (whom we call Guides) are passionate about helping older adults learn and stay connected. They communicate positivity and create a safe and supportive environment where learners can ask questions and learn at their own pace.

Not only has GetSetUp provided Joyce with the opportunity to learn new skills, but it has also helped her stay engaged and active. 

"I'm not only into the tech classes. They have a Rebounder class. I thought I would use a Rebounder trampoline during Covid, but it is catching dust in another room. So GetSetUp’s rebounder class is on, and I've dusted off my Rebounder trampoline. There are classes on GetSetUp that I can't get from the regular SilverSneakers," she says.

Jul 7, 2023
Learner Stories

Classes by:

Liz Miller

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