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Gerontology connections
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00094645/00001
 Material Information
Title: Gerontology connections
Physical Description: Serial
Language: English
Creator: Center for Gerontological Studies, University of Florida
Publisher: Center for Gerontological Studies, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Creation Date: 2004
Copyright Date: 2004
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Genre: serial   ( sobekcm )
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Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
System ID: UF00094645:00001

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DIRECTOR'S NTS


Thank you for your interest in our gerontol-
ogy programs and news. Through its vari-
ous programs, the Center for Gerontological
Studies ensures that today's students will
be prepared to meet society's needs in the
coming decades for professionals and citi-
zens who can inform public policy regarding
the needs of one of this country's most
valuable resources: its older adults.
Recent developments that we are par-
ticularly proud of include the new distance-
learning Graduate Level Certificate in
Geriatric Care Management, in partnership
with the Division of Continuing Education
and the National Academy of Certified Care
Managers. The certificate is designed to
enhance the ability of health and social
service professionals across the United
States to manage the care of elders in a
variety of settings, including the home.
The certificate is also designed to
enhance the ability of recent graduates in
health related fields to manage the compre-
hensive care of our aging population.
Additionally in the past year, we have a
new and energetic chapter of Sigma Phi
Omega, the National Honorary and
Professional Society for Gerontology, the


number of aging courses that are offered
and the number of students enrolled in the
gerontology minor keep growing, and the
Center has joined in a mutually beneficial
partnership with the Institute for Learning
in Retirement.
Because the Center serves all students
and faculty, regardless of department, col-
lege, or major, gifts to the Center for
Gerontological Studies impact a broad
cross-section of the University's population
and the community at large. Your generosity
helps students, faculty, and the community
by funding annual lectures and symposia
on aging; by enriching the collections of
aging-related books, journals, videos, and
online resources; by supporting research
activities and other student activities, such
as travel to gerontology conventions, geron-
tology promotional efforts, and community
activities.
Even a small donation can make a dif-
ference, so please think about supporting
our important mission by writing a check to
The Center for Gerontological Studies,
Account Number 000075.
Thank you in advance for your gen-
erosity and support of the Center.


The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has
awarded a $50,000 grant to the University
of Florida Foundation to be used by the
Center for Gerontological Studies in support
of the Leighton E. Cluff student research
program.
Created to increase student interest in
aging studies, the Leighton E. Cluff Award
for Aging Research honors the best research
papers written about older adults and the
aging process. Students from all fields of
study submit their papers each year to the
center, which are reviewed by a faculty
committee. A $1,200 prize is given for the
best paper in the graduate and professional


category and $600 is given for the best
undergraduate writer.
The award was established through a
donation from Leighton E. Cluff, professor
emeritus in the UF College of Medicine.
Cluff is the retired president of the Robert
Wood Johnson Foundation, the nation's
largest foundation devoted to improving
the health and health care of all Americans.
The new grant will boost the fund estab-
lished by Cluff in 2000.
"The Center for Gerontological Studies
has as one of its primary missions the
preparation of students who will be able to
address the special challenges associated


with a graying America," says Patricia
Kricos, director of the center. "The gener-
ous gift provided by the Robert Wood
Johnson Foundation to supplement the Cluff
Award ensures that today's university stu-
dents will be encouraged to prepare to
meet the future needs of older Americans."
Past recipients of the award have
included Katherine White, Sharon Phaneuf,
Cindy Hamilton, Arielle Borovsky, Amanda
Floetke, Amie Dirks, Samantha Lewis, and
Courtney Wise.
-BUFFY LOCKETTE


Grant Boosts Leighton Cluff Award








A Lifetime of

Memories


Why do we vividly remember particular
moments, days and events, while others are
forgotten? How are our memories strung
together to make a meaningful "life story?"
What functions do our memories serve?
Does that change as we age?
Under the direction of Dr. Susan Bluck,
research in the Life Story Lab, is conducted
with men and women of all ages to address
questions of what humans use autobio-
graphical memory for, and how that
changes across the lifespan. The research is
grounded in a common phenomenon: peo-
ple's tendency to think about their own
past and to share stories with others. In the
lab, interviewers ask people to produce per-
sonal memory narratives, that is, to share
pieces of their life story. In addition to
quantitative measures, these memory narra-
tives are then qualitatively coded. The
broad goal of this program of research is to


determine the role that autobiographical
memory plays in:
* Constructing and maintaining a sense of
identity
* Initiating and maintaining relation ships
* Directing future goals and plans

Dr. Bluck has a joint appointment as
an assistant professor in the Center for
Gerontological Studies and the Department
of Psychology. In addition to her work in
the Life Story Lab, she teaches undergradu-
ate courses in Gerontology and a graduate
seminar in Psychology, Autobiographical
Memory Across the Lifespan. For more infor-
mation, go to www.aging.ufl.edu/lifestorylab

-SUSAN BLUCK, PHD
PHOTO BY: RANDY BATTISTA/MEDIA IMAGE


Introducing PETERCOLLINGS


We would like to welcome our new assistant professor in aging, Dr. Peter Collings, who is jointly appointed
between Gerontology and Anthropology. Collings earned his PhD from Pennsylvania State University, home
of the "Nittany Lions," and his dissertation was on the perceptions of aging, the life course, and culture
change among Inuit in the Canadian Arctic. His current research examines hunting and food sharing among
Inuit, specifically the social network of food sharing between younger and older Inuit. In the fall, Collings
taught two graduate seminars -Culture and Aging and Language and Culture. We are pleased that he has
joined us here at the University of Florida and look forward to working with him and learning more about
his dynamic research projects.


Spotlight


Faculty in the Center for Gerontological
Studies are working on a variety of exciting
research projects in the field of aging. Here is
a sampling of our faculty's recent research
endeavors:

PATRICIA B. KRICOS
Dr. Kricos' research efforts focus on older
adults with hearing loss. Her two current
avenues of research with elders include the
effects of clear speech training on lip reading
and adjustment to hearing loss and hearing


aids by older adults. She is currently exploring
the relevance of the Transtheoretical Stages-of-
Change Model for helping older adults cope
with hearing loss.


ROBIN L. WEST
Dr. West's research looks at information pro-
cessing in aging and how pre-existing beliefs
about memory may affect these processes. Her
research goal is to maximize memory perform-
ance for older adults through strategy training,
increased positive beliefs, reduced anxiety, and
goal setting. In collaboration with William
Perlstein, a professor of clinical psychology,
she is examining the brain correlates of anxi-
ety and information processing using f-MRI
technology.


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UNIVERSITY OF

FLORIDA

Center for Gerontological Studies
2326 Turlington Hall
PO Box 117335
Gainesville FL 32611-7330


Address Service Requested


Ip~- 71A1 0 0 i1M


The University of Florida has recently estab-
lished a chapter of the national academic
honor and professional society in gerontology,
Sigma Phi Omega (Y9Q). The national objec-
tives of 1Q are to promote scholarship, pro-
fessionalism, friendship, services to older per-
sons, and recognition of exemplary achieve-
ment in gerontology/aging studies and related
fields. 92Q is striving to build a national net-
work of professionals whose leadership and
service will help shape the future of gerontology.
The objectives for our local chapter, Delta
lota, are as follows:

* To promote awareness of the field of gero-
tology and age-related issues.
* To spread our own knowledge and expe-
rience in gerontology across diverse
disciplines.


* To network within our organization and
within our community.
* To provide a platform to practice our pre-
sentations and receive feedback from peers.
* To provide service to the community within
the realm of gerontology.
* To enhance our knowledge and experience in
gerontology as it relates to our individual
fields.

During its inaugural year in 2003-2004,
the Delta lota (AI) chapter has participated in
various educational and public service events
including People Awareness Week, Careers in
Aging Week, and the annual Association for
Gerontology in Higher Education convention.
The chapter has also established a campus-
wide campaign promoting awareness of aging
and gerontological issues at the UF by educat-


ing students in the classroom and at organiza-
tion meetings. Last year, AI sponsored its first
ever Teacher of the Year in Aging Studies
awards program. Dr. Robert M. Beland, from
the Department of Recreation, Parks, and
Tourism, was our first recipient.

The current officers of AI are:
President: Brooke N. Schoeffler
Vice President: jillian Gordon
Treasurer: Erin Emery
Executive at Large: Courtney Wise
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Patricia B. Kricos

For more information on how you can get
involved or support Delta lota, contact Brooke
N. Schoeffler at brookus@ufl.edu