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Feast for Your Brain – Healthy Aging Community Day

10:00 am to 3:00 pm

Attend the free Feast for Your Brain healthy aging engagement event and enjoy presentations, performances, health services, games, mind-body exercises, food services and a raffle. Older adults and their families are all invited to attend. Graduate and undergraduate students are also encouraged to join the event where they can sign up for internships, experiential learning credits, and the Precision Aging Network (PAN) student ambassador program for healthy aging and population health research.  

The event brings together many aging experts from the University of Arizona Health Sciences and other partners. Coordinated by the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health to increase awareness and engagement with healthy aging practices and research opportunities, the event will support PAN which is empowered by the MindCrowd brain research project and funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). In 2021, UArizona was awarded a large grant to support the PAN project.

A national scale research network established with funding from the NIH’s National Institutes on Aging, PAN was created to develop innovative community-engaged brain aging research that will help to close the gap between lifespan and brain-health span. With multiple partners and study sites (UArizona, ASU, University of Miami, Emory University, Johns Hopkins University, Translational Genomics Research Institute) PAN brings a new scale to brain research across geographic regions and diverse communities.

The Feast for Your Brain event is presented in partnership with many community groups and is partnership with the Healthy Aging Lab, CoVHORT research study and Mobile Health Unit from the Zuckerman College of Public Health, the All of Us Arizona research study, the Skin Cancer Institute, and the UArizona Fred Fox School of Music.

Presentation Schedule

10:30 a.m. – Carol Barnes, PhD, “Precision Aging Network: Building Healthy Minds in Arizona”

Dr. Barnes will describe the Precision Aging Network grant that is centered in Arizona. This will include:

  • Explaining the overall goal of the grant - to understand how to optimize brain function to improve life quality at older ages
  • How our studies can lead to customized solutions for achieving the goal of healthy minds for individuals
  • How the aging brain has tremendous potential to adapt in positive ways

11:15 a.m. – David Coon, PhD, “Caring for Family, Friends, Neighbors and You”

Dr. Coon will present on evidence-based strategies that you can tailor to help you and others work together to manage stress, reduce isolation, and enhance quality of life – all of which have linkages to key health outcomes including healthy minds for life.

12 p.m. – Zhao Chen, PhD, MPH, “Balance Matters – Tai Chi for Your Physical and Mental Health”

Join Dr. Chen to learn about research findings on the benefits of Tai Chi to your health; find out local Tai Chi classes and get a taste of Tai Chi following a Tai Chi instructor. Discover how you can engage in mind-body exercises at home, your backyard, at work and everywhere else for better health and well-being. 

12:20 p.m. – Matt Huentelman, PhD, “What is MindCrowd? What Has It Taught us About the Aging Brain?”

Dr. Huentelman will share results from the MindCrowd project. Attendees will learn about the brain and the health, medical and lifestyle factors that are linked with memory performance. Dr. Huentelman will also talk about how MindCrowd is helping to power the activities of the Precision Aging Network and how the entire team will help usher in the new era of studying the aging brain in a fully personalized manner.

1:10 p.m. – Tomas Nuño, PhD, “Healthy Eating and Healthy Aging”

Dr. Nuño will provide tips for healthy eating across the lifespan. Following a nutritious diet is one of the best things you can do for your health as you age. He will discuss what is a nutritious diet, as sometimes dietary advice can be confusing or overwhelming. These tips may help you evaluate your eating in personal and social situations and find healthy changes to make.

1:40 p.m. – Amanda Sokan, PhD, MHA, LLB, “We Want YOU! The Student Ambassador Program and PAN”

This is a recruitment focused talk. Dr. Sokan will:

  • Introduce the SAP to student members of the audience
  • Explain its purpose and importance
  • Share the value-added for volunteers, both in contributing to the success of PAN mission, as well as to their own growth and development – both professionally and personally

2:10 p.m. – Kate Ellingson, PhD, “Healthy Aging and COVID-19: Lessons Learned from the Pandemic”

Dr. Ellingson will summarize the latest trends in the pandemic and key issues that COVID-19 has presented for aging and caretaking. This will include:

  • A brief discussion of epidemiologic trends and hybrid immunity at the population level
  • Dilemmas faced when weighing isolation and infection risk in the context of healthy aging
  • Steps everyone can take to protect our communities moving forward
Carol Barnes, PhD
Regents' Professor, Psychology, Neurology and Neuroscience; Evelyn F. McKnight Chair for Learning and Memory in Aging; Director, Evelyn F. McKnight Brain Institute; Director, Division of Neural Systems Memory and Aging
University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson
David Coon, PhD
Professor and Associate Dean of Research Initiatives, Support and Engagement, Edson College of Nursing and Health Innovation
Arizona State University
Zhao Chen, PhD, MPH
Associate Dean, Research-Public Health; Professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics; Director, Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics; Director, Healthy Aging Lab
University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health
Matt Huentelman, PhD
Professor, Neurogenomics Division; Scientific Director, Center for Rate Childhood Disorders, Head Neurobehavioral Research Unit; Associate Research Professor, Basic Medical Sciences
Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen); College of Medicine – Phoenix
Tomas Nuño, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics
University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health
Amanda Sokan, PhD, MHA, LLB
​Assistant Professor, Department of Public Health Practice and Translational Research
University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health
Kate Ellingson, PhD
Associate Professor, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics
University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health
To request any disability-related accommodations for this event please contact the event coordinator at least three business days prior to the event.
PDF icon Feast for Your Brain event flyer2.21 MB
10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Saturday, September 10, 2022 - 10:00am


Faculty, Staff, Students, Alumni, Community
Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health


Tucson area
Health Sciences – Tucson
Health Sciences Innovation Building
1670 E. Drachman Street, Tucson, AZ 85721


Raymond Valenzuela
Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health