We will empower people to age well and live a positive healthy life.


The Institute of Gerontology leads cutting edge research and education in the classroom and community. We advance our healthy aging mission through collaborative strengths in mental health and cognition, technology innovation, and positive lifestyle promotion.

Since its founding in 1965, the Institute of Gerontology has focused on the changing needs of older adults in Georgia. The IoG promotes innovation in education, research, and outreach programs by supporting education leading to formal degrees, identifying high impact research questions in public health and public policy, and sharing the results of research with local, state, national, and international audiences.

With institutional roots dating back over 50 years, the Institute of Gerontology at the UGA College of Public Health is at the vanguard of formally-supported gerontological research and training opportunities in the United States. Our activities include graduate and post-doctoral training, collaborative basic and applied research, and faculty development. Institute faculty provide expertise to public, private, and professional organizations.

Institute of Gerontology History

In July of 1965, UGA President O.C. Aderhold appointed Dr. Robert P. Wray as the chairman of a Multi-Departmental Council on Gerontology. The Council consisted of twelve members representing a diversity of institutes, departments, schools, and colleges across the University. At that time, Dr. Wray’s position in gerontology was jointly supported by the School of Social Work and the Center for Continuing Education. Over the next 20 years, gerontology flourished under the directorships of Dr. Wray, Dr. David Levine, Dr. James Thorson, and Dr. James Montgomery, and Dr. Leonard W. Poon, who served as Institute’s Director and Chair of the Faculty of Gerontology from 1985 until his retirement in 2011.

Today, the Institute of Gerontology serves as home to UGA’s Faculty of Gerontology with over 25 UGA faculty members representing various institutes, departments, schools, and colleges across the University. In 2005, the Institute became a unit of the newly created College of Public Health, expanding its research and opportunities into the field of public health.