USM Aging Initiative

*We are currently taking logo suggestions or ideas. See below for more details.

September 2017

Who We Are

The USM Aging Initiative is a new campus-level initiative created to connect faculty, staff, and students who have research and scholarship interests in any aspect of the aging field. The goal is three-fold: to foster engagement on the experience of aging at the individual and system levels; to connect those faculty, staff, and students who have similar areas of interest in ways that support scholarly inquiry; and to promote aging-related scholarship that is already taking place on campus. The USM AI has received funding through the USM's Title III Faculty Interest Group (FIG) program for the 2017-2018 academic year in order to develop an initiative website that will serve these goals and to host a symposium in Spring, 2018 that will feature USM scholarly work related to aging.

Two surveys were sent out to the USM community in Spring, 2017 to survey faculty and staff interest in an aging initiative at the campus level and their academic or scholarly engagement in aging research. Over 160 people responded to the first survey. Of those, 146 faculty and staff, who represent 25 areas of expertise and skill sets, indicated interest in participating in a collaborative initiative. These respondents represent a variety of academic departments, including Arts, Biology, Education, Law, Music, Nursing, Psychology, Recreation Studies, and Social Work. 

Since the initial dissemination of the survey, a USM Aging Initiative Steering Committee was formed by those interested parties. The Steering Committee has met four times and will continue to meet monthly on the third Tuesday from 1-2 pm in Wishcamper 427 on the USM Portland campus. For those who cannot attend meetings in person, we will be setting up a Zoom account to allow virtual attendance. 

Steering Committee members include:
Holly Bean
Donald Beane
Anne Cardale
Wendy Cherubini
Mary Lou Ciolfi
Nadine Edris
Elizabeth Gattine
Eileen Griffin
Frances Jimenez
Jennifer Pratt
Maryann Russell
Linda Samia
Heather Timins
If you are interested in becoming a member of the Steering Committee, please email Frances at

Steering Committee Updates

Check out the USM Aging Initiative infographic shared at the UMS Aging Initiative Conference in August. 

Read More

Meeting minutes from the September Steering Committee meeting are now available on our Google+ page.

Read More

Next Steps


The Steering Committee is developing a web-based platform to connect faculty, staff, and students across disciplines through aging-related projects and scholarship. Currently, we are exploring free website platforms to host our website and interviewing a handful of USM faculty and staff on their web needs and how this website can be an effective tool for connection and collaboration. We will be reaching out to several of you to get ideas about how to make the website most useful to you and your students. 


We need a new logo! Maybe you have some ideas? We are looking for an image that connotes cross-disciplinary collaboration, out-of-the-box thinking, and scholarship around aging issues. It is a tall order to get across all of those ideas, but please send along your ideas to Frances at Maybe something associated with “incubator”, “creativity”, “crucible”, “spark”? 


We are planning to hold either a half- or whole-day symposium showcasing faculty, staff, and student research on USM's Portland campus in May 2018. Help us pick a date by filling out a short survey! Click the link below. 

Send Us Your Suggestions

In the News

Noteworthy aging-related events and publications
As we reach out to all of you about the website design, we would love to hear about your work and feature it here. In the meantime, please feel free to promote your work and email Frances at or add a note on our Google+ page (see G+ button below).

Eileen Griffin and Elizabeth Gattine have authored a new policy brief on Maine’s Long Term Services and Supports. It is entitled Charting a Pathway Forward: Redesigning and Realigning Supports and Services for Maine's Older Adults and can be found here.

Mary Lou Ciolfi presented a workshop on social isolation and loneliness in older adults at the Maine Affordable Housing Conference on September 22nd. The session was entitled Rethinking Design and Service Delivery to Combat Isolation and Loneliness.

Both Anne Cardale and Eileen Griffin presented workshops at the Maine Council on Aging's Wisdom Summit on September 20th. Anne's panel presentation focused on learning opportunities available to older adults through The Maine Senior College Network, and was titled Curiosity Never Retires - What Maine's Senior Colleges Offer Lifelong Learners. Eileen's workshop was titled Aging Initiative at the University of Maine System: Shaping Aging Policy and Practice through Community and University Research Partnerships, and informed community members of the policy expertise available within UMS and how they could help community members in various research and community planning needs. 
What are you up to?
Send us your ongoing projects, ideas, or specific interests in the aging field to add to our growing inventory of activities at USM!
Copyright © 2017 USM Aging Initiative, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
USM Aging Initiative
34 Bedford St
Portland, ME 04101

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.

This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
University of Southern Maine · 34 Bedford St · Portland, Me 04103 · USA

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp