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Vol 57 No. 16 : Sept. 1, 2005
Vol 57 No. 16 | Sept. 1, 2005

Goodman Receives Archstone Grant For Project on Aging

Social Work's Catherine Goodman, a member of the university since 1985, recently received $655,147 over three years from the Archstone Foundation to participate in the California Social Work Education Center's Aging Initiative.

Together with co-investigator JoAnn Damron-Rodriguez of UCLA, Goodman will combine Archstone's funding with support from the California Welfare Directors Association and CSULB's Department of Social Work to pursue her project titled "CalSWEC II Aging Initiative: California Labor Force Development in Geriatric Social Work" running through 2008. The grant is to advance the goals of the California Social Work Education Center's Aging Initiative (CalSWEC) and is conducted in collaboration with this statewide organization.

The Archstone Foundation is a private grant-making organization whose mission is to contribute towards the preparation of society to meet the needs of an aging population. The Foundation has served a key role in building the capacity of grant makers in aging.

"I'm very happy to receive this support," said the Topanga Canyon resident and expert on the growing role of grandparents as primary caregivers of their grandchildren. "Our major goal is to develop a work force to help deal with the 3.5 million older adults in California. CALSWEC is shifting its focus to aging to go along with their new mental health mission. What once was about only child welfare statewide has expanded into mental health and aging."

The current grant follows Goodman's and Damron-Rodriguez's first Archstone funding that supported a 2004 summit that drew "100 stake holders in aging" including educators, administrators and policy developers to CSULB. "Our current project builds on that summit and the relationships we discovered there."

Goodman's 10 projects funded under the Aging Initiative deal with such issues as the development of curriculum, the finalization of Social Work competency goals, coordination with other national aging initiatives, the development of a CALSWEC dissemination center, a survey of area schools to study their aging curriculum (or to encourage them to develop one) and the development of curriculum in aging.

"Archstone will provide stipends for 24 students in years two and three of the project and we'll ask area communities to match that so that student stipends may continue," she explained. "We're aiming for a two-to-one match in Year Three. It's an honor to receive a stipend and it looks good on student resumes. It's as if society had given its blessing to this area. It is important socially and encourages students to enroll in an aging curriculum."

She sees the grant as a tribute not only to her participation but to CSULB's Department of Social Work. "We have a huge concentration in aging our department," she said. "Ours is one of the biggest programs in the nation with a third of our 600-graduate student enrollment focusing on aging. Our department is a pathfinder in terms of producing social workers in gerontology. Many departments of Social Work have no concentration in aging at all."

She hopes the Archstone grant helps her to contribute to many of CALSWEC's goals. "In some cases, we can take the infrastructure developed to deal with child welfare and adapt it to the needs of developing social workers in aging. It is a wonderful opportunity," she said. "To be able to use an existing statewide network represents an efficient and economical approach to dealing with aging. We're very excited about an opportunity to create sustainable agency-university collaboration and to see CALSWEC's infrastructure expand to include aging. I'm happy to be able to contribute to that."

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