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Students' Corner

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Graduate Center for Gerontology Representatives

College of Public Health Representatives

Gamma Mu The University of Kentucky Chapter of Sigma Phi Omega

About Sigma Phi Omega and Gamma Mu: Sigma Phi Omega is the official national honor society for recognizing the excellence of those who study gerontology and/or aging, as well as of professionals in aging service. Gamma Mu is the University of Kentucky chapter. Sigma Phi Omega seeks to promote scholarship, professionalism, friendship, and services to older persons, and to recognize exemplary attainment in gerontology/aging studies and related fields.

Gamma Mu Sponsored Events:Gamma Mu sponsors department-wide events such as providing a team for the Alzheimer’s Memory Walk, hosts guest speakers, and participates in various university and community-based activities throughout the year. Gamma Mu also holds monthly meetings in the Gerontology Center for SPO members.

Becoming a Member:Membership is open to undergraduate and graduate students who are majoring or minoring in gerontology/aging studies and related fields and who are in at least their second term of enrollment. Undergraduates must have a grade point average of at least 3.3 on a 4.0 scale, and graduate students must have at least a 3.5 GPA to be eligible for membership. Faculty, alumni, professional, and honorary memberships are also available. National dues for students are $30 for the first year and $20 in subsequent years. New members receive a certificate, a lapel pin, a subscription to the Sigma Phi Omega Newsletter, and an invitation to participate in the national meeting and all activities of the Society. For more information about the local chapter, contact Katie York. For national organization information, go to Sigma Phi Omega’s website.

UK Gamma Mu Representatives

Externatl Funding Sources

Internal Funding

Rebecca Cunningham Van Meter Endowment Fund:

This fund was established in honor of Rebecca Cunningham Van Meter, a 1932 alumna of the University of Kentucky to assist the University’s Graduate Center for Gerontology in its research and education mission. It is the donor’s hope that the lives and health of present and future generations of older Kentuckians will be improved through this gift. Van Meter Awards are given to students who the Selection Committee feels will contribute to the economic and intellectual status of the Commonwealth through their education, research, or professional endeavors. Awards from the fund shall be for research fellowships, student travel, and professional development activities for doctoral students in the University’s Graduate Center for Gerontology.

Gheens Fellowship:

The Gheens Fellowship was created through a five-year grant from the Gheens Foundation. This grant is used to provide a stipend for a doctoral student in the Graduate Center for Gerontology whose program of research and scholarship includes a focus on long-term care. Recipients of the Gheens Fellowship are approved by the Administrative Council of the Graduate Center on the recommendation of the Director of Graduate Studies.

Charlotte R. Schmidlapp Fellowship in Gerontology:

The Charlotte R. Schmidlapp Fund was established in 1908 by Jacob G. Schmidlapp, a Cincinnati philanthropist and former president of Fifth Third Bank. He established the fund in memory of his daughter who was killed in an automobile accident in Paris, France. Mr. Schmidlapp lost his wife, mother and another daughter in a train wreck. He established the fund to allow young women, unlike his daughters, to realize their dreams. The Graduate Center for Gerontology received substantial funding from the Schmidlapp Fund to establish this fellowship in January, 2001. This award supports the career of a woman who demonstrates academic potential for excellence in the program. The fund, in the words of Mr. Schmidlapp , is to “ennoble, uplift, and strengthen the lives of young women who are compelled to be self-supporting.”

Robert T. McCowan Fellowship:

The Robert T. McCowan Fellowship was established in 1999 by the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging Foundation and supported through a gift from the estate of Mr. Robert T. McCowan to create an endowment for support of a doctoral student whose program of research and scholarship includes a focus on Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders. Priority in receiving the award is given to students with a primarily biomedical or clinical focus.