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Pauline Abbott

Senior Scholarship

Pauline Abbott Awarded for Work on Behalf of Seniors Through Education

April 28, 2009

By Valerie Orleans

As a follow-up to the awards, Abbott and Daucher were invited to participate on the KPFK radio talk show, “Experience Talks,” hosted by Connie Corley. The program that aired April 14 is available through May 2009 for download in the KPFK audio archives.

Pauline Abbott, director of the Institute of Gerontology, has been the recipient of two honors recently. Last month, Abbott received the Birren Senior Scholar Award from the California Council of Gerontology and Geriatrics Association. The recipient is selected by colleagues from throughout the state who are involved in teaching and research in gerontology and geriatrics.

The Birren Award recognizes outstanding achievements by individuals who have spent the majority of their careers (or lifetimes) working in and contributing to the fields of gerontology and/or geriatrics in California.

“I am so honored by this award because it is a recognition by my peers — faculty from all the different higher education institutions that provide academic programs in gerontology and geriatrics,” said Abbott. “What is especially notable is that of the four awards that are given each year, for the first time, three of them have a Cal State Fullerton connection.”

This year, two other recipients with a link to Cal State Fullerton were honored. These include Lynn Daucher, former state assemblywoman and current director of California’s Department of Aging, who received the Lifetime Achievement Award, and former student Trina Sauceda, who was recently awarded her master of science in gerontology degree, who received the Peterson Student Achievement Award.

Daucher has frequently worked with Cal State Fullerton to secure funding that enables the university to expand programs or services to benefit the elderly. This Life Time Achievement Award is given to someone from outside the academic environment, who has made outstanding contributions to enhance the well being of California’s mature citizens.

The Peterson Student Achievement Award is bestowed on a student who has made an outstanding contribution to the field of gerontology while enrolled in a university program in California. Sauceda is currently pursuing a doctorate while conducting research with local VA hospitals.

“This is the first year that three individuals with connections to Cal State Fullerton have been honored in the same year,” said Abbott. “That makes it extra-special and demonstrates the university’s commitment to the senior members of our society.”

Earlier last month, Abbott also was honored with a commendation from the City of Brea for her work on the senior citizen advisory board since its inception in 2000. Among her achievements were creating a developers’ checklist for assisted living and Alzheimer’s care facilities, providing recommendations for senior transportation services (including senior-friendly walking paths in new city parks) and providing counsel on recreation, leisure time, and human services programs and activities that would benefit seniors.

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