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Kalavar wins fellowship award

fellowship award
Josi Kalavar
6/13/2011 —



Jyotsna "Josi" Kalavar, associate professor of human development and family studies, was awarded fellowship status in May by the Gerontology Society of America.

Fellowship — the highest class of membership within the society — is an acknowledgment of her outstanding work in the field of gerontology, a branch of science that studies aging. It is separate from geriatrics, which is the branch of medicine that focuses on late-life medical issues. Kalavar's primary research interests are the diverse experiences of aging (homebound seniors, immigrant seniors, experiencing ageism, adult day care, seniors residing in institutions, aging among the Maasai elderly) and intergenerational relationships. Her work focuses on the care of the elderly in a changing society.

In 2004, she earned a Fulbright Scholar award to study in India. The Monroeville resident researched the elderly in a country whose traditional society previously assumed that relatives, particularly grown children, would provide care for their aging family members. According to Kalavar, due to such factors as changing lifestyles and values, dual career families and rising costs of living, a new phenomenon is emerging there.

"Against the backdrop of a changing social landscape, many older adults of the middle-income category in urban India are choosing to live in 'pay and stay' homes," said Kalavar, Penn State New Kensington's first Fulbright scholar.

After earning a bachelor's degree from Bombay University in India and a master's degree from the State University of New York, Kalavar completed her doctoral degree studies at the University of Maryland, and then spent two years as a National Institute on Aging postdoc at the University of Michigan. She joined the New Kensington campus faculty in 2001 and teaches courses in infant, child and adolescent development, adult development and aging, health psychology, and industrial-organizational psychology.

Kalavar will be officially recognized at the Gerontology Society's annual meeting in November. Founded in 1945 and headquartered in Washington, D.C., the society's mission is to advance the study of aging both domestically and internationally. The organization brings together biologists, health professionals, policymakers, and behavioral and social scientists to promote healthy aging.

For more about Kalavar, visit http://www.personal.psu.edu/~jmk18

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