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Chair and Associate Professor
Areas of Research and/or Practice
Dr. Retrum always tries to find ways to involve students in her projects, for example last year she hired two social work students to help facilitate community meetings and focus groups for a project that aimed to reduce isolation for older adults in a five neighborhood area in Denver. Dr. Retrum continues to pursue research and community project opportunities that aim to improve the health and quality of life of older adults and their families.
Dr. Retrum has eight years of clinical social work experience in health and mental health related settings; hospice, home and, inpatient care, in-home therapy, and developmental disabilities. She was a recipient of the John A. Hartford Foundation Pre-Dissertation Award in 2006. Through her own research and affiliation with the Institute of Gerontology from 2005-2009, Dr. Retrum worked with many community non-profit organizations that serve the social, health, and mental health needs of older adults and their families. She was also the PARTNER Postdoctoral Fellow in Public Health Systems and Service Research (funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation) at the University of Colorado Denver, School of Public Affairs from 2010-2013.
Dr. Retrum’s research background includes Addressing the Needs of Underserved at At-Risk Isolated Seniors, GLBT Seniors Using Support to Age in Neighborhoods, and Geriatric Social Work: Building Capacity with Evidence Based Practice and served as lead researcher for the AARP’s Framework for Isolation in Adults Over 50. Dr. Retrum continues to pursue research and community project opportunities that aim to improve the health and quality of life of older adults and their families.
As an Associate Professor in the Department of Social Work at Metropolitan State University of Denver, Dr. Retrum teaches at the undergraduate and graduate level. She enjoys teaching courses related to direct clinical social work practice in health and mental health care settings, practice with families, adults, older adults, and courses that teach social work students about research and practice and program evaluation.
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