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Pre-Conference Workshops: Come Early and Get Intensive

If you want to build muscle and strength, there’s no substitute for intensive workouts. When it comes to building and strengthening your professional career, the same is true for intensive workshops. Pre-Conference Workshops are rigorous, skill-developing sessions intended to build on the attendee’s knowledge of aging. These full or half-day sessions complement the GSA Annual Scientific Meeting Program while allowing attendees to further cultivate their professional toolbox in a specific area. Pre-registration for all workshops is required. All workshop fees are nonrefundable. Continuing Education is not awarded for pre-conference workshops.


Schedule of Events

All Pre-Conference Workshops begin at 8:00 AM ET on Wednesday, November 10. Click on arrow to the right of each workshop title for a full description.

Half Day Workshop: 9:00 AM – 12:30 PM (ET)

Inter-organelle Communication in the Regulation of Aging and Longevity

In eukaryotic cells, membrane-bound organelles including endoplasmic reticulum (ER), endosomes, lysosome, peroxisome, mitochondria, Golgi and lipid droplet not only perform their specialized functions but also communicate extensively in order to maintain cellular functions and homeostasis.

The Pre-meeting Symposium at the 2021 Gerontological Society of America Annual Scientific Meeting is aimed at highlighting recent advances on the interactions between organelles that are critical in maintaining cellular functions and homeostasis during metabolic stress, disease, and aging. In addition to organelle-organelle interaction, specific interactions between the organelle and the nucleus have recently been shown to broadly influence transcriptional regulation, autophagy, immunity, and cell fate. In light of those recent advances, the focus of the Symposium is to expand the current knowledge of critical organelle-organelle interactions in the context of stress and disease conditions to their implications in aging while exploring state-of-the-art technologies necessary to measure those interactions.

Half Day Workshops: 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM (ET)

Building scalable and sustainable health promotion interventions (e.g. activity, diet, sleep, medication adherence) requires skills and strategies from multiple disciplines. This interactive workshop will actively integrate principles from each intervention science and implementation science through a mix of interactive presentations, hands-on activities, and roundtable discussions. Workshop content will provide an introduction to adaptive interventions, engaged co-design, designing for dissemination, and implementation strategies. This workshop is open to researchers, clinicians, and educators of all levels and disciplines. Workshop content and activities may be particularly relevant for individuals who are designing, evaluating, and/or implementing health behavior and health promotion interventions in both clinical and community settings. Participants will be invited to bring an active project to discuss during hands-on activities and breakout groups (not required; case studies provided if needed). A select number of travel awards will be available for students, trainees, and junior faculty (by application only). NOTE: Originally scheduled as a full day workshop, this half-day workshop on November 10th will be supplemented by three additional sessions scheduled over subsequent weeks. This revised format will allow workshop content to be tailored to participants’ projects and interests, as appropriate.

The Reframing Aging Initiative has been embraced by many organizations and professions in the wider field of aging. As a multi-disciplinary and multi-generational setting, the university is a perfect place to apply the communication strategies of the reframing aging principles. These frames have been shown to increase knowledge and improve attitudes about aging and increase support for aging policies and programs. Would you like to counteract ageism on campus and improve the ways that older people and the aging process are regarded? If so, join us for this workshop to explore how to apply reframing aging principles in your work. The workshop includes a brief review of the research and the principles, a panel discussion by faculty who have applied reframing aging strategies on their campuses, and small group work to practice applying the principles to your messaging. Pre-work includes watching the free video series, Reframing Aging and Ageism, and choosing a communication piece to reframe at the workshop.

Panel Topics
Confronting Ageism in Curricula: Tracey Gendron, Virginia Commonwealth University
Reframing Aging for Student Community Engagement: Shannon Jarrott, The Ohio State University
Reframing Research Dissemination: Suzanne Kunkel, Miami University of Ohio
Toward a Shared Vision: The Intersection of Reframing Aging and the Age-Friendly University: Carrie Andreoletti, Central Connecticut State University
Moderator: Nancy Morrow-Howell, Washington University in St. Louis
Reframing Aging Overview provided by Laurie G Lindberg, Reframing Aging Initiative, GSA

The assessment of frailty can help to identify older adults at highest risk of adverse health outcomes and those in need of targeted interventions. Despite its potential to modify practice patterns to better protect frail adults, frailty detection and clinical implementation strategies, frailty screening and care mapping has not been broadly implemented in clinical settings in the U.S. This workshop will provide insights based on rigorous research and clinical experiences into core topics: 1) state-of-the-art knowledge on definitions of frailty and the distinctions between different frailty assessments, the epidemiology and biology of frailty, and potential interventions; 2) progress-to-date in implementing frailty assessment into clinical settings, including challenges, successes and lessons learned from multiple specialties; 3) integrating frailty in your own research and clinical work; 4) gaps where a fuller evidence base is needed. Designed for clinicians and researchers interested in integrating frailty into their clinical practice and research.

With the growing complexity of longitudinal studies of older populations, new approaches are emerging to organize and present these data to facilitate the research process. Increasingly, researchers are interested in multi-wave studies presented as unified analysis files rather than a series of cross-sections, the popularity of the RAND HRS being one example. Another area of interest is interoperability, allowing the comparison of different studies across variables and themes. The workshop will illustrate the NACDA Data Portal using the MIDUS and NSHAP studies as examples and external portals such as NHATS to explore interoperability research frameworks. The use of data organized into merged across-wave studies will enhance all researchers' ability to successfully employ longitudinal analysis files, identify variables of interest, and create customized analysis files for download and further analysis. NACDA is currently the only organization offering this capacity within a DDI Lifecycle framework.

The AGHE Program of Merit (POM) review process advances gerontology and health professions programs. The Program of Merit has expanded its review to include any health professions program applications with specific guidelines and competencies dedicated to Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine and Doctor of Pharmacy programs. Broad guidelines and competencies are published for all other health professions programs. For successful POM applicants, the AGHE POM provides gerontology programs and those health disciplines that integrate geriatrics/gerontology content into the curriculum with an AGHE distinguished program designation. This designation verifies program quality to administrators to assist with lobbying additional resources, maintaining program quality, marketing the program, and recruiting prospective students. This workshop will begin with the “Why,” “What” and “How” of applying for the AGHE POM. Time is allocated for POM application and program development FREE consultation. Institutions need not be an AGHE member to apply!

Mentoring & Career Development Workshop

*October 28 & 29, 2021 • 12:00 PM to 5:00 PM ET

The GSA Mentoring and Career Development Technical Assistance Workshop for Early Career Diversity Fellows has moved online*. For registration and award application information, please visit our Mentoring and Career Development Workshop Page

This unique Mentoring and Career Development Technical Assistance Workshop program is tailored to suit the needs of trainees from diverse backgrounds. This exceptional educational and networking opportunity supports professional training and growth among early career trainees from underrepresented background. This workshop is designed to empower trainees for successful career development and strategic planning. Comprehensive information related to mentoring opportunities, career development, professional networks and leadership will be discussed with the ultimate goal to produce a successful, well-prepared and empowered diverse workforce to contribute to the future of aging research.

This workshop is supported in part by the National Institute on Aging of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number R13AG072884. The content is solely the responsibility of the faculty and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.


The Gerontological Society of America is the oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education, and practice in the field of aging. GSA’s principal mission — and that of our 5,500 members — is to promote the study of aging and disseminate information to scientists, decision makers, and the general public. Founded in 1945, GSA is the driving force behind advancing innovation in aging — both domestically and internationally. Our members come from more than 50 countries. To further fulfill our mission, GSA assembles more than 3,500 professionals from around the world to an Annual Scientific Meeting. This monumental event now features more than 500 sessions each year. Additionally, we publish the field’s preeminent peer-reviewed journals.



The Gerontological Society of America
1220 L Street NW, Suite 901
Washington, DC 20005
United States


Meeting Logistics/Program