SDSU named age-friendly university | Information Center

The designation recognizes the university’s culture and commitment to lifelong learning and the inclusion of ages.

With the number of seniors and their caregivers growing dramatically nationwide, San Diego State University has established itself as a leader with new programs as part of its decades-old initiatives to provide social, personal and economic benefits to seniors and their communities.

As of July 2021, SDSU has now committed to being an Age-Friendly University (AFU), joining less than 80 institutions connected through the Global Network of Age-Friendly Universities and the Academy of Gerontology in Higher Education.

“As the demographics of Southern California change dramatically and individuals live longer and remain vibrant, SDSU shares AFU’s commitment to ensure engagement and lifelong learning for all. members of our society, ”said the president of SDSU. Adela de la Torre.

By 2030, estimates indicate that one in four San Diego’s will be 60 or older, and those over 65 will double and be 30% more diverse in terms of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation and of lower socio-economic status than today.

“Our aging adults must continue to have opportunities to engage and contribute in a meaningful way, but also to continue to learn and develop,” said de la Torre.

As an age-friendly university, SDSU is committed to actively evaluating its current programs and creating interdepartmental and intergenerational plans to better serve seniors and the San Diego area. The following are some of SDSU’s current offerings in response and support to San Diego’s aging population:

SDSU’s Osher Institute hosts webinars and programs and offers membership-based access to local theaters, museums, cultural facilities, and other opportunities. Members of the Osher Institute can also access the SDSU Library and the Aztec Recreation Center, and are engaged in leadership and volunteer opportunities.

The SDSU Social Policy Institute, whose staff, students and volunteers were instrumental in securing the university’s designation as an Age-Friendly University, is a non-profit affiliate of the School of Social Work. It connects the university with government, business and community stakeholders through teaching, research, program design and innovation in policies, programs and practices aimed at improve the well-being of older people, their caregivers and the community.

Another program, Advancing Diversity in Aging Research (ADAR), is funded by the National Institute of Aging to recruit underrepresented SDSU students who are interested in the field of aging and prepare them to enter a doctoral program in this field. .

The SDSU Center on Aging has for many years advanced multidisciplinary education, research and community service in gerontology and geriatrics, and has been at the forefront of developing new knowledge and influencing national policies on aging. Under the direction of Steven Hooker, Dean of the College of Health and Human Services, it has grown to become the Center for Excellence in Aging & Longevity.

Aging trends

“Over the next several decades, San Diego will experience an unprecedented increase in lifelong longevity. Initiatives such as the SDSU Center for Excellence in Aging and Longevity (CEAL) will highlight ways in which all San Diegan residents can benefit from this transformation, both as individuals and as a region, ”said declared Nancy McPherson, executive director of AARP California.

And it was in 2019 that the college now called SDSU Global Campus began to develop a new model at the university to expand access to adult education.

Since then, and very attentive to the needs of professionals and individuals who are parents and the elderly, SDSU Global Campus has introduced a wide range of program and certificate offerings with flexible hours.

“We pride ourselves on the inclusive nature of our unique SDSU community, and this is yet another example of how we are changing and introducing new initiatives in support of our diverse community,” said Radhika seshan, the Dean of the SDSU Global Campus.

Seshan and his team also facilitated the application and registration processes and set up centralized support services for the elderly.

SDSU’s commitment as an age-friendly university comes as California was named the eighth state in the country to join the AARP Network of Age-Friendly States and Communities. The State of California made the announcement in June.

“The AARP congratulates San Diego State University for being a champion of aging and for joining the Age-Friendly College program,” said Joe garbanzos, president of AARP California.

“People of all ages and abilities benefit from the adoption of age-friendly policies and programs,” Garbanzos said. “Equally important, our communities benefit from the economic, intellectual and societal contributions of older people. AARP looks forward to working with SDSU to advance this important agenda for seniors.

City programs

Prior to SDSU’s commitment as an age-friendly university, the Social Policy Institute helped the cities of San Diego, Chula Vista, and La Mesa meet the demands and join the network of age-friendly states and communities. of AARP. The San Diego Foundation has supported these and other efforts to increase “livability” and reduce barriers for seniors.

“Training future professionals and leaders to support older people is an important part of our work, but it doesn’t stop there,” said Steven hornberger, director of the SDSU Social Policy Institute.

“Sometimes the most meaningful thing you can do for a person is to help them see opportunities to participate and engage with their community and, through that, to feel valued and appreciated,” said Hornberger. “Our goal is to help all of San Diego’s seniors live long, healthy lives of equity, opportunity and well-being.”

Kimberly gallo, director of aging and independence services at the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency, said: and inclusive communities where people of all ages and abilities have the opportunity to thrive . Our entire region will benefit from SDSU’s efforts to improve older people’s access to intergenerational, wellness and cultural learning programs, as well as training for older workers who wish to remain in the workforce or pursue a second career.

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