MISSOULA – The University of Montana has been accepted into the Age-Friendly University Global Network, an international consortium of universities promoting participation, inclusion, education and wellness for older adults.
UM was recognized for its ongoing efforts to promote education for students interested in aging and methods that include older adults in educational and wellness programs on campus. These efforts include programming within the Montana Geriatric Education Center, the Institute for Gerontology Education, an interdisciplinary gerontology minor and the Montana Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.
“Recognition of UM as an age-friendly university speaks to the accomplishments of the University in preparing students to work with older adults and their families in health-related disciplines and in reaching out to older adults to include them in the UM community,” said Keith Anderson, UM professor and director of the Montana Geriatric Education Center.
According to Anderson, acceptance into the Age-Friendly University Global Network recognizes the work that UM has done, but also acknowledges that continued efforts are needed to increase UM’s ability to train students in gerontology and promote inclusivity to the growing number of older adults.
Brian Mac Craith, president of the Age-Friendly Global Network, said UM is “working to meet the needs of an aging population” and that “UM will bring an added richness to the Age-Friendly University Global Network.”
UM President Seth Bodnar said the University’s participation in the network speaks directly to its mission to include service and public impact in the student experience.
“We’re proud to be among universities who are working hard to create a culture of inclusive excellence, particularly for our aging population,” he said. “Because of UM’s efforts and advanced programming in gerontology, our students and faculty have the opportunity and capacity to deliver meaningful services to our community.”
For more information on the Age-Friendly University Global Network, visit https://www.dcu.ie/agefriendly/index.shtml.