On July 26, the MIT AgeLab, in partnership with the New England University Transportation Center (UTC) and AARP, presented the inaugural OMEGA scholarship to Lauren Miller, a rising senior at Newton South High School in Newton, Massachusetts. The OMEGA scholarship recognizes young people who work to foster intergenerational connections within their communities.
Miller cofounded a student group called Crossing Generations, which organizes events to connect high schoolers with local senior citizens. Through her activities, Miller has shared the insight — so rare among teens — that young adults and elders have much to learn from each other. For her efforts, she received a commendation from the City of Newton.
The award was presented in the AgeLab studio before Miller's family, one of her teachers, a staff member from the Newton Senior Center, and AgeLab staff members and associates. Joe Coughlin, AgeLab and New England UTC director, and Michael E. Festa, Massachusetts director of AARP, also spoke about the value of MIller's work. The OMEGA scholarship will provide $1,000 toward Lauren's college tuition, and an additional $1,000 to Newton South High to continue Lauren's intergenerational efforts.
OMEGA, which stands for Opportunities for Multigenerational Engagement, Growth, and Action, was created by the MIT AgeLab to support the development and growth of student programs and clubs that connect high school students with older adults. With AARP and the New England UTC, AgeLab will continue to offer the OMEGA scholarship for the coming academic year.
The MIT AgeLab is a multidisciplinary research program that works with business, government, and NGOs to improve the quality of life of older people and those who care for them. The New England University Transportation Consortium conducts research, education, and technology transfer to understand, manage, and creatively exploit the strategic implications of disruptive change on the future of the transportation system.