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Kyeongmo Kim portrait

Kyeongmo Kim, Ph.D.

Assistant professor

Email: kkim7@vcu.edu

Phone: (804) 827-8890

Ph.D., University of Maryland
M.S.W., Washington University in St. Louis
M.A., Yonsei University
B.A., Korea University

Kyeongmo Kim, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the VCU School of Social Work. His scholarship focuses on aging and mental health. He has particular interests in the role of programs, policies, and neighborhood environments in predicting mental health status and service utilization of older racial and ethnic minorities.

His current research examines the effects of county-level characteristics on mental health services use among older racial and ethnic minorities. This research expands our understanding of disparities in mental health service use (within- and between-group differences), and inform intervention strategies targeted at specific racial and ethnic minorities. Another research project investigates the associations between neighborhood physical and social environments and well-being of older adults. He is collaborating with a research team at University of Maryland at Baltimore and Wayne State University. This study addresses the social determinants of health disparities.

His research is informed by his practice experiences at both the domestic and international level. He was a program director at a community-based organization serving older immigrants in Chicago. In South Korea, he, as a social worker, developed and implemented social enterprise programs with working poor families; he also worked as an investigator at Presidential Commission that promotes human rights. Kim welcomes mentoring opportunities to guide students about the issues facing on older adults in his research, teaching, and scholarship.

Notable awards, honors and appointments

  • Council on Social Work Education Minority Fellowship Program, 2013-2016

  • The best quantitative article of the year, Journal of Social Work Education, 2016

  • Excellent Paper Award, National Research Foundation of Korea, 2016

  • Grantmakers in Aging Fellowship, 2015

  • Pre-Dissertation Fellow, Association for Gerontology Education in Social Work, 2012-2013

Research projects and funding

Recent and current funded projects

Principal Investigator, Neighborhood environment, food security, and wellbeing of older adults. Virginia Commonwealth University School of Social Work.

Consultant, Aging in place and neighborhood change. University of Maryland (PI: Amanda Lehning).

Collaborator, Neighborhood Environment and Risk of Cardiovascular Disease in Baltimore City. University of Maryland, Baltimore and University of Maryland Baltimore County (PIs: Amanda Lehning & Christine Mair).

Consultant, Understanding engagement in advance care planning among Korean American older adults. Indiana University School of Social Work (PI: Michin Hong).


Selected publications

Kim, K., Lehning, A., & Sacco, P. (2018). Analyzing the problem: Disparities in behavioral and mental health for older adults. In C. Moniz & S. Gorin (Eds.), Mental health care policy and practice: A biopsychosocial perspective. New York, NY: Routledge.

Kim, K. (2018). County context and mental health service utilization by older Hispanics. The Gerontologist. Advance online publication.

Smith, R., Lehning, A., & Kim, K. (2018). Aging in place in gentrifying neighborhoods: Implications for older adults’ physical and mental health. The Gerontologist, 58, 26-35.

Kim, Y., Park, A., & Kim, K. (in press). Food insecurity and depressive symptoms of older adults living alone in South Korea. Ageing & Society. Advance online publication.

Lehning, A., Kim, K., Smith, R., & Choi, M. (2018). Does economic vulnerability moderate the association between transportation mode and social activity restrictions in later life? Ageing & Society, 38(10), 2041-2060. 

Lee, M., & Kim, K. (2017). Older adults' perceptions of age-friendliness in Busan Metropolitan City. Urban Policy and Research, 35, 199-209.

Lehning, A., Smith, R., & Kim, K. (2017). Friendly initiatives: An emerging approach to improve communities for vulnerable populations. Journal of Policy Practice, 16, 46-58.

Kim, K., Lehning, A., & Sacco, P. (2016). Assessing the factor structure of well-being in older adults: Findings from the National Health and Aging Trends Study. Aging and Mental Health, 20, 814-822.