By Michele Coffill
A faculty research scientist in aging from the Kirkhof College of Nursing at Grand Valley State University was selected as a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America.
Sandra Spoelstra, associate dean for research and scholarship, was nominated for the fellowship by KCON faculty members Cynthia Beel-Bates and Rebecca Davis, who are also GSA fellows.
The GSA will honor all fellows at its annual Scientific Meeting in Boston, Massachusetts, in November. Fellowships recognize people who have contributed outstanding and continuing work to the field of gerontology.
Spoelstra co-leads a program designed to help adults who live below the poverty line remain at home and within their communities rather than moving into a nursing home. The MiCAPABLE (Community Aging in Place, Advancing Better Living for Elders) program has successfully reduced falls and hospital admissions while improving a person’s ability to function in a home setting.
Spoelstra’s research team, including co-investigator Sarah Szanton, from Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing, received three grants to support implementing MiCAPABLE statewide next year.
Cynthia McCurren, dean of KCON, said, “This is a well-deserved honor for Dr. Spoelstra’s commitment to improving the overall well-being and health of older adults.”