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New York program lets seniors head back to the classroom, learn latest technology

August 15, 2012

Many of today's seniors are online, and a large portion of them are on Facebook. However, for those that aren't, there are many classes aimed at bringing them up to speed with the popular social network, Reuters reports.

One of the largest initiatives is in New York, where nearly 90 libraries are offering tutorials on the ins and outs of Facebook to seniors looking to stay connected to friends and family. Josh Soule, the senior librarian at one Bronx library, goes over more than just the basics. His classes cover everything from the advent of the new timeline to changes in privacy settings. Unlike common perceptions of seniors, Soule says they pick up on things very quickly.

"They are more tech savvy than they think they are," he told Reuters. "They tend to be unsure of themselves, I find, and they need reinforcement and some tips about how to use it better."

Classes like those offered by Soule are indicative of two growing trends among seniors: the embrace of technology and the desire to continue their education. A number of states and higher education institutions have taken note and provide outlets for seniors to keep their minds active. Among them is Ohio's Program 60, which lets seniors take classes at public universities for no cost, the Chillicothe Gazette reports.