Public Release: 

GSA confers 2005 Distinguished Mentorship in Gerontology Award to USC's Bengtson

The Gerontological Society of America

The Gerontological Society of America has chosen Dr. Vern Bengtson of the University of Southern California to receive its 2005 Award for the Distinguished Mentorship in Gerontology. This honor is given to individuals who have not only fostered excellence in the field, but have made a major impact by virtue of their mentoring, and whose inspiration is sought by students and colleagues.

The award presentation will take place at GSA's 58th Annual Scientific Meeting, which will be held from November 18th-22nd, 2005 in Orlando, FL. The actual conferral will occur on Sunday the 20th at 12:15 p.m. at the Orlando World Center Marriott Resort. The meeting is organized to foster interdisciplinary interactions among clinical, administrative, and research professionals in the field of gerontology.

Bengtson has received four teacher-of-the-year awards from USC during his long tenure there. He has chaired 34 doctoral dissertations in the sociology of aging. He has served on 23 other PhD committees of students doing research in the psychology of aging, public policy and aging, economics of aging, and social work. He has mentored eight postdoctoral students, all of whom have tenure-track appointments are working in the field of aging. Bengtson is also a past GSA president.

To be eligible for the prize, the mentor must have had influence on graduate, undergraduate, and professional students as evidenced by the number and accomplishments of their mentees. Membership in GSA's Behavioral and Social Sciences section is required for the award.


The Gerontological Society of America (GSA), founded in 1945, is the oldest and largest national multidisciplinary scientific organization devoted to the advancement of gerontological research. Its membership includes some 5,000+ researchers, educators, practitioners, and other professionals in the field of aging. The Society's principal missions are to promote research and education in aging and to encourage the dissemination of research results to other scientists, decision makers, and practitioners.

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