Gerontologists are the professionals who are expert in the field of aging and problems related to it. This field involves people from various fields like biology, nursing, criminology, medicine, dentistry, social work, physical and occupational therapy etc.
A gerontologist can work in all types of settings. Specialists can be found in hospitals, long-term care facilities, clinics, counseling offices, home health agencies, physicians offices, government offices and even in research departments. The work environment will depend on the setting that you are in. If you are a caregiver, your demands will be quite different than if you work in research, policy or management.
Elie Metchnikoff is the founder of gerontology. He researched over the foundational figure of modern immunology, aging and longevity science, and of modern medicine. He is also a pioneer in immunology, microbiology and a vice director of the Pasteur Institute in Paris, and the Nobel Laureate in Physiology. He coined the terms gerontology and thanatology.
James E. Birren was one of the discoverers of gerontology who was also the President of The Gerontological Society of America. He is majorly known for his theory where he described aging as three different processes i.e. primary, secondary and tertiary. James was also the founder dean of the University of Southern California Leonard Davis School of Gerontology which was the first professional school of this organized field and director of the Ethel Percy Andrus Gerontology Center. He was also associated with the UCLA Center on Aging for many years.
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