OBU students interact with seniors at 'Checks and Chats'

Tina Bridenstine
The Shawnee News-Star
OBU nursing student Summer Moran checks blood pressure at Checks and Chats Friday.

The Shawnee Senior Center bustled with a variety of age groups Friday as it hosted its first Checks and Chats from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

This was the first of several Checks and Chats session planned to take place at the center throughout the spring semester.

During each session, OBU nursing students will be on hand at the center, and those 55 and older can show up to have blood pressure readings, strength tests, mental acuity, and other health-related checkups performed by the students, Recreation Facility Supervisor Amy Riggins said.

OBU nursing students and seniors play bingo Friday. One goal of Checks and Chats is to encourage cross generational socialization.

Nichole Jackson, simulation director and assistant professor of nursing at OBU, said as well as students providing health assessments, the sessions were also designed to encourage cross-generational socialization.

The first Checks and Chats session, scheduled for Feb. 18, was cancelled due to weather, so Friday's session became the first.

Area residents from a variety of age groups played pickle ball during Checks and Chats Friday.

An OBU nursing student did health checks near the senior center entrance, while in another room students played bingo with seniors, and a variety of ages engaged in pickle ball in the municipal auditorium.

Though there is no set schedule yet, there will be several more Checks and Chats sessions this spring. Sessions will always be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will occur on either a Thursday or a Friday. No appointment is necessary, and it is free to anyone age 55 or older.

For more information on upcoming Checks and Chats events, keep an eye out for the calendar or for Riggin's column in the weekend Lifestyles pages.

OBU nursing students and seniors play bingo Friday during Checks and Chats.

Tina Bridenstine is a reporter for The Shawnee News-Star. She can be reached at tina.bridenstine@news-star.com.