Andrew Thomas Steward

Adjunct Faculty

  • Faculty

What I do

My research explores gaps in understanding and responding to ageism. In particular, I explore interventions to reduce internalized ageism and the intersectionality of ageism with other social justice issues, with an overarching emphasis of the well-being of aging adults.


aging and gerontology, civic and community engagement, social justice, health and wellness, disparities

Professional Biography

Andrew Steward is an LCSW in Colorado with 5 years post-MSW experience. Steward is a PhD Candidate and has been an Adjunct Faculty at the Graduate School of Social Work since 2017. Steward currently serves as a research consultant for Boomers Leading Change, a non-profit providing volunteer opportunities for adults 50+ throughout the Denver area. Additionally, Steward is the Program Evaluation Coordinator for the LinkAGES Intergenerational Collaborative through the Knoebel Institute for Healthy Aging. Finally, Steward provides therapeutic flute music for clients in hospital and skilled nursing settings as a Certified Music Practitioner.


  • Ph.D., University of Denver , 2021
  • MSW, University of Denver , 2014
  • BA, Music , University of Denver , 2012

Licensure / Accreditations

  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW)
  • Certified Music Practitioner


My broad research aim is to explore how health outcomes for older adults may be enhanced by reducing internalized ageism through micro, mezzo, and macro level interventions. A growing body of research identifies significant public health impacts of internalized ageism, including mental health challenges, cognitive decline, cardiovascular events, recovery from disability, and longevity (see work by Becca Levy and colleagues). Yet, very little research has explored which interventions may be effective in reducing internalized ageism, thus promoting more positive health outcomes as people age. Additionally, important aspects of the phenomenon and impacts of ageism remain unexplored by research, indicating a need for qualitative inquiry. Therefore, my current research agenda involves two primary areas of focus:
Research Aim 1 (quantitative focus): Based on theories of successful and productive aging, to test potential interventions in examining whether engagement in social, physical, intellectual, or spiritual activities (e.g., volunteering, intergenerational programming, exercise, computer use, and mind-body practices) may mitigate the negative impacts of internalized ageism on health.
Research Aim 2 (qualitative focus): To explore specific phenomena and impacts of ageism from the perspective and lived experience of aging adults, including intergenerational tensions in society, racialized ageism, and interpersonal-level ageist microaggressions, each in terms of their impact on well-being.