Dr. Catherine Tong works with a range of stakeholders to improve the health and wellbeing of older adults, with a dedicated emphasis on foreign-born older Canadians. She does this primarily by engaging in community-based and patient-oriented research, employing qualitative methodologies. Areas of research include ethnicity and aging, home and community care, mobility and physical activity, and multilingual and accessible research design. Her passion for gerontology extends to the university classroom, where she teaches ‘Health and Aging’, ‘Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Aging’, and ‘Active Bodies in Later Life’.
Catherine completed her PhD at the University of British Columbia, in the Interdisciplinary Studies Graduate Program (Home Department Family Medicine). Working closely with community partners, her doctoral work included a mixed-method exploration of the physical activity and mobility of Chinese and South Asian older adults in Vancouver. Her prior degrees (University of Victoria and Simon Fraser University) focused on languages, public policy and intercultural communication.
With the Geriatric Health Systems Research Group, she is involved in a number of projects, principally the CFN-funded study ‘Transforming primary health care for frail elderly Canadians’. She also serves at the Social Science Section Editor for the Canadian Journal on Aging.
Catherine is part of a large, multicultural and multilingual extended family. She dabbles in any language that she comes across, and is most at peace outside, in the forest, with her husband and two young children.