Department of Social Work Receives Excellence in Memory Care Award

Tompkins receives award

Dr. Catherine Tompkins receives the first Excellence in Memory Care Award. Photo courtesy Insight Memory Care Center.

Insight Memory Care Center in Fairfax recognized the Department of Social Work with its first Excellence in Memory Care Award. The award honors programs and services that positively impact memory care in the community.

The department was selected as a result of a research project, led by Catherine Tompkins, associate professor of social work and assistant dean for undergraduate studies in the College of Health and Human Services. The project is exploring the effects of personalized music on the behavior and emotions of older adults with dementia or memory loss.

"It’s estimate that more than 47 million people worldwide live with dementia, and that number is only expected to grow," Tompkins said. "Using individualized music interventions has shown to have a positive impact on a person’s cognitive abilities, and we hope this additional research will help us improve the quality of life for people living with dementia or memory loss."

Others involved in this research include Emily Ihara, Megumi Inoue, Holly Matto, and Sonya Hudson.

Learn more about the research project in this story and brief video.