Colloquium Showcases Colorado State University Research Highlighting Ways to Optimize Healthy Aging

A Colorado State University colloquium will explore ways in which physical and mental health of the aging population can be optimized, based on the latest health and aging research. It is slated for Oct. 29 – 30 at the Hilton Fort Collins, 425 W. Prospect Road.

The aging of the world population is considered one of the major global challenges of the 21st century, a challenge similar in magnitude and importance to major environmental and political challenges. The “graying” of the population also poses major challenges in the United States and Colorado.

The colloquium is sponsored by the Colorado State University Vice President for Research Office and is entitled Optimizing Healthy Aging: Promoting Multidisciplinary Collaboration. CSU researchers from multiple disciplines including biomedical sciences, health and exercise science, human development and family studies, psychology and occupational therapy will present findings from their work. The opening keynote address, “Optimizing Healthy Aging: Current Perspectives and Future Challenges,” will be given by Carolyn Aldwin, professor of human development and family sciences at Oregon State University.

“Although most people associate with aging that ‘bad things’ are going to happen, there is increasing evidence that the biological, psychological and social aging-related processes can be influenced in positive ways and that healthy aging can be optimized,” said Manfred Diehl, professor of human development and family studies, director of the Colorado State University Center on Aging, and program chair of the colloquium.

Nearly 38 million people living in the United States were 65 years old or older in 2007. Older adults represented 12.6 percent of the U.S. population — about one in every eight Americans. It is projected that by the year 2030 about 20 percent of the population, one in every five Americans, will be age 65 or older. The older population itself is also getting older with individuals in the 85 and above group being the fastest growing segment of the U.S. population. These national statistics are also reflected in Colorado. Currently about 13 percent of the population in Colorado is 65 or older. Between 1996 and 2006 Colorado was one of ten states in which the 65 and older population increased by 20 percent or more.

“The primary objective of this year’s CSU research colloquium is to showcase the research that is conducted across the campus with a focus on optimizing healthy aging. The research colloquium provides a forum for open communication among disciplines and to stimulate multidisciplinary collaborations. Researchers, as well as professionals in the greater community with an interest or occupation in the field of aging, are invited to attend,” Diehl said.

There is no charge for the two-day colloquium, including meals. Registration is required and is limited to 200 participants. For more information, the complete program and to register, visit or contact Linda Foster at (970) 492-4038 or