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Student Studies Transportation and Social Isolation

Released: 7/1/2021

Satya Moolani.

It was a tender conversation Satya Moolani had with his grandmother which motivated his decision for his career. His Grandmother had lost her husband and Satya was on a rare trip home to Pakistan to visit her. While sitting and talking with her, she began to open up about her life with her husband, Satya's grandfather, and a transformation occurred. He saw her come alive in animated conversation and even a healing process began. Satya stated, "That conversation instilled in me the desire to serve, and work with older adults."

We met Satya through Howard Maier, an STC board member and instructor in the Case Western Reserve University's SAGE program. Satya, is a student at CWRU working towards a Master's Degree in Health Care Management, and with hopes to become a physician. His interest in older adults resulted in a research paper about the transportation needs of people living in the community.

As part of his research he interviewed Janice Dzigiel, Executive Director of STC. His paper featured Senior Transportation Connection's model for meeting the transit needs of older adults. He highlighted operational details of the organization and practices implemented to safely transport seniors during the COVID pandemic.

Satya's paper noted a study that found, "seniors aged 65 and older who no longer drive make 15 percent fewer trips to the doctor, 59 percent fewer trips to shop or eat out, and 65 percent fewer trips to visit friends and family, than drivers of the same age. Providing these individuals the same opportunity and flexibility is important so that they do not feel like they have been left out."

STC contributes to removing transportation barriers by ensuring affordable and accessible transportation is available to 12,000 registered riders who live across 75% of Cuyahoga County in 32 municipalities. Around 80% of these passengers are females while 52% of all riders are older than 75."

Satya noted, "STC's service is a good option to improve one's quality of life and promote personal independence."

Satya's interests include developing ways to address social isolation among older adults primarily in long-term care facilities, due to COVID, he and fellow students started "Create Circle" a program that pairs college students with older adults to spend an hour once a week in virtual conversation. In many cases a positive relationship grows between senior and college student. The main objective of Create Circle is to decrease loneliness and increase sense of purpose of both the student and the older person.

Seniors can spend one hour twice a week with a college students to share knowledge, life experience, and encouragement with one another. If you are, or you know a senior that could benefit from this program you can contact, createcircles.cleveland@gmail.com ✉ for more information.

Satya's research paper earned him a nomination at CWRU for the SAGES writing award, as well as the Think Big Leadership Award. STC appreciates his interest in services for older adults, and wishes him a rewarding and inspiring future.



 
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