Roybal Institute Symposium


CONTACT: Margie Yu
Public Affairs Assistant
(323) 343-3047


Los Angeles, California -- October 9, 1996 -- On Thursday, October 31, 1996, the Edward R. Roybal Institute for Applied Gerontology at California State University, Los Angeles presents a symposium on "The Need and Prospects for Professional Training in Gerontology." The speakers will be James Birren, associate director of the UCLA Center of Aging, and Betty Birren, executive director of the California Council on Gerontology and Geriatrics. The presentation is free to the public and is scheduled from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Roybal Institute for Applied Gerontology on the Cal State L.A. campus.

According to Manuel Miranda, CSLA Endowed Chair in Gerontology, the symposium focuses on the need to train individuals to become professional gerontology caregivers, researchers and educators. There will also be a discussion on the future growth of the elderly population and what their critical needs will be and how these needs can be met.

James Birren is currently associate director of the Center on Aging at UCLA and serves as an adjunct professor in medicine, psychiatry and bio-behavioral sciences. He is also professor emeritus of gerontology and psychology at USC. Author of more than 250 scholarly publications, his research interests include the causes and consequences of slowed information processing in the older nervous system, the effect of age on decision-making processes, and the role of expertise in skilled occupations. He has served as a delegate to several White House Conferences on Aging and continues to develop national priorities for research and education related to issues of aging.

His past positions include: chief of the aging section of the National Institute of Mental Health, founding executive director and dean of the USC Andrus Gerontology Center, founding director of the Anna and Harry Borun Center for Gerontological Research at UCLA, president of the Gerontological Society of America, president of the Western Gerontological Society and president of the Division on Adult Development and Aging of the American Psychological Association.

Betty Birren has been the executive director of the California Council on Gerontology and Geriatrics since 1987. She began working in the field of gerontology in 1947, when she coordinated the first survey of the literature in gerontology and geriatrics for the U.S. Public Health Service. Since 1979, she has frequently been a group leader in the course, Psychological Development Through Guided Autobiography, at the USC Andrus Gerontology Center and at a summer session at the University of British Columbia in Canada. Currently, she is involved with two guided autobiography groups sponsored by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP).

She is a member of the Adult Development and Aging Division of the American Psychological Association. She has served as its membership chair for ten years, its secretary/treasurer for three years and its president in 1980-1981. She has also been active in the Gerontological Society of America.

Cal State L.A. is located at the Eastern Avenue exit of the San Bernardino (I-10) Freeway, near the interchange of the I-10 and I-710 Freeways. For more information or to RSVP to the symposium, please call the Edward R. Roybal Institute for Applied Gerontology at (323) 343-4724.

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