Cyndi is a graduate of ASA’s New Ventures in Leadership program and is the Director of Community Health Outreach Programs at Tanana Chiefs Conference in Fairbanks, Alaska.
In the latest in our series profiling ASA leadership program alumni, AgeBlog asked Cyndi a few questions about her interests, goals and the roles that mentorship has played in her career development.
Here's what she said:
Mentors can be vital at every stage of your career. They can help you define and reach your goals, continue to grow as a professional and stay motivated. Here are 5 more reasons you need a mentor:
1. Mentors will share their experience, so that you can learn from it
Why reinvent the wheel if you don’t have to? Mentors have been there and done that, and will share their experiences with you so that you don’t have to learn everything the hard way.
This Mother’s Day, many family members will celebrate by doing what they do every day: being the primary caregiver to their mother. Across the country 42 million people are faced with the challenge of providing care to their older parents and friends each day. Mother's Day offers us a chance to say thank you to those caregivers, many who may not even consider the help they provide as caregiving. Check out the "Thanks Project" created by AARP and the Ad Council, for some easy ways to honor caregivers.
Editor’s note: The author of this article has requested anonymity.
Every morning we look at ourselves in the mirror, and see the image we reflect to the world. Who is that person and how did that person come to be?
I look at a 60-year-old man with curly gray hair and somewhat tired blue eyes. The story of my life is deeply hidden. We all hide secrets. What are mine?
Religiosity and spirituality, as they pertain to the process of aging, have both been the focus of many studies on the lives of mainstream non-minority older persons. Likewise, religious practices and spiritual pursuits have been found very beneficial in helping this population achieve a healthy later life. But, few studies have looked at gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender/transsexual persons (LGBT) and their spiritual lives. This is especially true for the latter.
I am grateful to have been asked to serve as guest editor for our collection of blog posts on transgender elders. Since 1987 when I developed a class on GLBT (gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender) issues for social workers and counselors at the School of Social Work at Eastern Washington University in Cheney, Wash., I have tried to sensitize students to the needs of this population.
Those who work in the aging services sector see the multiplicity of people’s lives and know it is unwise to think everyone is generally alike. This fallacy, however, pervades our social construction of sexuality and gender, and has been the dominant discourse for many years. Appreciating the reality of gay, lesbian and bisexual elders is emerging, so its inclusion in research and care provider training remains a somewhat novel area. Including transgender elders in conversations about providing long-term care and services often remains an afterthought.
On March 11, 2014, Helen Bonser, founding parent of PFLAG Spokane and long-time supporter of transgender individuals, spoke with Michelle Burdick following a PFLAG meeting in Spokane, Wash. Burdick relates common issues in aging as a transgender individual: a lack of needed service providers; her comfort level with being transgender; stereotyping by medical personnel; and retirement issues. Here are Michelle’s comments in her own words:
Editor’s note: Rose shared these thoughts on April 18, 2014, in a two-hour interview. Then she highlighted what she felt were the most salient points in a written document submitted several days later.
Rose feels she has many female traits: little body hair, no chest hair, a small head.
She identifies experiencing her first “female feelings” at 6 years of age: she wanted to wear girl’s clothes; she wanted to play with girls; she did not care for sports.