Campus: CSU, Fullerton -- October 7, 1999

Cal State Fullerton Names Director to Lead Institute of Gerontology

In an effort to promote successful aging through education, research and community service, Cal State Fullerton has established an Institute of Gerontology and named Dr. Pauline S. Abbott its director.

The institute, housed in the Ruby Gerontology Center, will be a central force for research, collaborative efforts across disciplines, regional conferences and partnerships with the community.

"Dr. Abbott is well qualified to provide the leadership and direction needed to launch and implement the mission and goals of the Institute of Gerontology," said President Milton A. Gordon.

"I am thrilled that the Institute of Gerontology at Cal State Fullerton was formed during the United Nations Year of the Older Person," said Abbott, who previously served as assistant dean and assistant director of USC's Leonard Davis School of Gerontology. "The university is making a real commitment to gerontology, the study of aging, in a true multidisciplinary approach that crosses all schools and encompasses the community."

The Institute of Gerontology will be working with existing gerontology efforts and groups, such as Continuing Learning Experience, the Lifespan Wellness Clinic, the Balance and Mobility Program and University Extended Education.

Abbott's responsibilities include implementing and developing policies and procedures that support the study of gerontology as a discipline and of the Ruby Gerontology Center as a leader in such programs.

"We have a great leader to lead this institute to become one of the best centers of gerontology in the nation," said Dr. Jacob Pandian, chair of the Gerontology Policy Council, which drafted the institute's by-laws. Pandian also chaired the search committee that brought Abbott to the campus following a nationwide search. "An Institute of Gerontology was established to create more coherence and integration of the existing programs on campus," he added.

Abbott currently serves as president-elect of the California Council of Gerontology and Geriatrics. She also has served as the national president of Sigma Phi Omega, the national gerontology honor society, as well as president of Women in Management at USC. She is a longtime member of the California Council of Gerontology and Geriatrics; the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators; Association for Gerontology in Higher Education; American Society on Aging; and the Gerontological Society of America. She also belongs to the International Association of Physical Activity, Aging and Sports.

Additionally, Abbott has taught classes at Pasadena City College and USC, where she earned a doctorate in education in 1995, and has authored several papers on issues related to gerontology.

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