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One of the goals of the Center on Aging (COA) is to strengthen and expand education in aging (geriatrics and gerontology) that focuses on the health and independence of older adults. We have accomplished these goals through center-directed activities, collaborations with University of Iowa departments and centers, and participation in the Iowa Consortium of Aging Programs. Since 2007, we have pursued four types of educational programs.
First, the COA created and continues to direct the University of Iowa Interdisciplinary Program for Graduate Students in Aging (IPGSA). Since 2007, this program has enrolled up to twelve graduate and professional students and offers these students an opportunity to increase their knowledge and skill set in terms of providing care to older adults. The students also are linked with the Iowa Consortium of Aging Programs, which works to broaden academic educational offerings in aging.
Second, the COA organizes and hosts a variety of lectures and conferences targeted for researchers, educators, and service providers who already are involved with promoting the health and independence of older adults. The COA annual keynote lecture is called the Joe L. Parkin Memorial Lecture on Aging and features an internationally recognized researcher, educator, and/or health professional in the field of aging. The COA also develops, implements, and evaluates local, state, and national conferences that inform and educate participants about contemporary opportunities and challenges presented by our aging population.
Third, the COA is home to the University of Iowa Lifetime Enrichment Adult Program (UI LEAP). UI LEAP offers a curriculum of over 100 intellectually stimulating sessions annually designed to promote health and independence among 450 active members living in southeastern Iowa.
Fourth, the COA contributes and collaborates with other campus-based efforts that offer training in geriatrics and gerontology.