Welcome to the website of the Center on Aging (CoA) at the University of Maine. Established in the winter of 2001-2002, we are a multi-disciplinary research center within the University of Maine System devoted to aging-related education and training, research and evaluation, and community service and consultation. CoA’s base of operations is at the University of Maine System’s flagship campus. Our main offices are in the city of Bangor, with staff outposted in several locations throughout the state. The Center is proud to be affiliated with the Institute of Medicine, the School of Social Work, and the College of Earth, Life, and Health Sciences. We are also a designated interdisciplinary research unit at the University of Maine administered through the Office of the Vice President for Research.
CoA is always buzzing with activity, but nowadays, much of it happens remotely, in good part because of the lasting impact of the pandemic on workforce practice. As a result, our staff and students are now more immediately situated throughout the state in the very cities, small towns, and communities we serve.
A wide range of exciting community programs, educational initiatives, and research investigations are continuously underway. The staff and students at UMCoA are planning and implementing a variety of programs that aim to enrich the lives of Maine’s older citizens and their families, the communities in which they live, and the current and future workforce serving them. At the same time, we are talking with older adults, family members, health and human service professionals, government officials, students, faculty, and business leaders throughout the state and the nation as we take stock of what are the most pressing aging-related issues and concerns for each of these important stakeholder groups in the future of an aging America.
Unquestionably, our mission has always been bold and broad. The designation of aging research as an Emerging Area of Excellence at the University of Maine by the Office of the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs & Provost has elevated the priority placed on aging-related education and inquiry significantly and has extended our focus. In addition, we are working very closely with the recently established Institute of Medicine. In concert with the Office of the Vice President for Research, we aim to support aging initiatives not only across the UMaine campus but throughout the University of Maine System. It requires the full commitment of the staff, associates, and students affiliated with UMCoA and the loyal resolve of the rapidly expanding cadre of academic and community partners collaborating with us in this effort. It also requires the strong support of those who have the financial wherewithal to make the much needed programs that we offer now and intend to offer in the future a reality in a state that has traditionally grappled with scarce resources. Our mission remains the right one, given we remain the oldest state in the nation based on median age and the home to the largest proportion of baby boomers in the U.S. At the same time, Maine continues to have a high proportion of older adults grappling with some of the most demanding challenges facing individuals in later life.
We will continue to strive to offer the widest possible array of aging–focused services, education, and research to the state and the nation. We will also remain committed to moving our programs as quickly as possible from the drawing board to the classrooms and meeting halls of the campus and to a variety of public and community venues throughout the state and nation. Partnering with other organizations makes it all possible.
Please visit our website regularly as we will be updating our program information frequently, and join us as we work to ensure that Maine is a state that proudly embraces its older citizens and has the professional expertise and programmatic infrastructure able to respond to the opportunities and challenges of an aging America.
Lenard W. Kaye
Director and Professor