Faculty and Staff
Nan Sook Park, Ph.D., MSW, MS
Nan Sook Park, Ph.D., MSW, is a Professor in the School of Social Work at the University of South Florida. Dr. Park received her MSW and Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She held a faculty position at the University of Alabama before she joined the USF in 2009.
Dr. Park’s research interests include the intersections of social isolation and psychosocial resources with health and well-being among older adults in the community and long-term care settings. She is also interested in issues around health disparities/minority aging and home and community-based services for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementia. Funded by the Hartford Geriatric Faculty Scholars program, she conducted research on social engagement among older residents in assisted living facilities in Alabama. At USF, she extened her previous study by examining social relationships of ethnic/racial minorities and implications for their well-being in Florida assisted living communities. She also expanded her research interest in social connectedness to examine social and environmental contexts of older immigrants in diverse settings.
Dr. Park has worked on the subcontract grant from the National Institute on Aging (R01AG047106) entitled “Limited English Proficiency: Implications for Health and Health Care among Older Immigrants” (PI—Yuri Jang). The five-year-grant addressed critical issues of older immigrant populations such as navigating the health care systems and building the social networks in the community. Through the project entitled “Building Dementia Care Network and Community Capacity for Older Asian Immigrants with Limited English Proficiency in Florida” (Funded by the Florida Department of Health, 21A25), Dr. Park in collaborations with Drs. Hondao Meng and Fawn Ngo has investigated ways to increase knowledge, access to care, and community capacity in Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias among older Asian Americans with limited English proficiency.
In addition, Dr. Park has collaborated with Dr. Soondool Chung in the Ewha Institute for Age Integration Research at the Ewha Womans University, South Korea, since 2016. Two projects entitled “Age Integration: Building a New Social Paradigm in Aged Society,” and “Toward Intergenerational Solidarity: Beyond Age Integration and Building New Ways of Life to a Sustainable Society” demonstrate an application of age integration issues in the Korean society.
Dr. Park teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on research and human behavior theories, an MSW elective course on dementia care in home and community-based service from a social work perspective, and a PhD course.
Social isolation/social resources in the community and long-term care settings
Health disparities and minority aging
Home and community-based services for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementia