ISSUED: 16 April 2019
MEDIA CONTACT: Valerie Owens
SHEPHERDSTOWN, WV — Shepherd University’s 11th Annual Aging Well Workshop, “Compassion: Tools for Personal Transformation and Social Courage,” will take place Tuesday, May 14, from 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. at the Robert C. Byrd Center for Congressional History and Education. This workshop, sponsored by the departments of nursing, psychology, and social work, will offer six continuing education units (CEU) for nurses and social workers. It is open to members of the community, including elders and their families. The cost, which includes lunch, is $50 to obtain CEUs and $25 for other participants. The deadline to register is May 8.
The keynote speaker will be the Rev. Gudjon Bergmann, founder and lead educator at Harmony Interfaith Initiative, an educational and social good organization based in Kyle, Texas. Bergmann is a professional speaker with more than 20 years’ experience who has authored more than 25 books. His newest book, “Co-Human Harmony: Using Our Shared Humanity to Bridge Divides,” was published this year on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Bergmann, born and raised in Iceland, moved to the U.S. in 2010. He became an ordained interfaith minister in 2017, then discovered his calling to foster co-human understanding by bridge-building differing ideologies, theologies, and philosophical viewpoints. During his talk, Bergmann will address how people have increased their ethical capacity through the ages, how each of us can do so in the modern world, and the pitfalls to be aware of. He will also explore what bridge-builders, healers, and harmonizers (caretakers) can do to decrease the likelihood of burnout through self-care.
The workshop will present topics centered around self-care, compassion, and personal transformation. Afternoon workshops will explore spiritual awareness, masculinity, and the power of positive social interactions to improve the health and well-being of those in the second half of life.
Other speakers will include Daniel Spies, owner and managing therapist at Inner Awakening Counseling and Consultation; Ed Poling, retired Church of the Brethren minister; and Bernadette Wagner, founder of Prime Time for Women, a research-based live-audience monthly TV show that challenges negative stereotypes of aging and facilitates positive social interactions.
For more information and to register, contact Sharon Earl, administrative associate, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, at 304-876-5332 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or Dr. Heidi Dobish, associate professor of psychology, at 304-876-5435.
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