Katarina Friberg Felsted, PhD portrait
  • Assistant Professor (Clinical), College Of Nursing

Research Summary

My research addresses chronic conditions in older adults by using alternative, complementary, and integrative treatments and strategies. I seek to promote optimal aging across the life course. I work to advance education in aging studies. I work to increase the participation of nurses on boards statewide.


  • Masters of Science, Gerontology, University of Utah. Project: An Integrated Wellness Program Designed for a Senior Living Community
  • Bachelor of Arts, English Literature and Composition, Brigham Young University
  • admitted, PhD program, College of Nursing , Cancer, Aging, End of Life cohort, University of Utah
  • Higher Education Teaching Specialist, Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence, University of Utah


Katarina Friberg Felsted is as Assistant Professor in the Gerontology Interdisciplinary Program in the College of Nursing at the University of Utah, and holds an MS in Gerontology.

Katarina teaches both core and elective gerontology undergraduate and graduate courses: Health and Optimal Aging; Diversity in Aging; International Dimensions of Lifelong Learning; and Caregiving & Aging Families. Katarina has a strong commitment to excellence in teaching in higher education, and has earned her Higher Education Teaching Specialist designation through the Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence at the University of Utah.

She currently serves on student supervisory committees and scholarly project committees for the GIP MS and Nursing DNP programs in chair, committee member, and content expert roles. She is a member of the Center on Aging, the University of Utah Academy of Health Science Educators, the Utah Aging Alliance, the Utah Commission on Aging, and the Utah Geriatrics Society. Katarina enjoys serving the community through her work on the the Utah Organization of Nurse Leaders Leadership Committee as well as the executive board of the Utah Action Coalition for Health. She works to increase the participation and impact of nurses serving on boards state- and nationwide. 

Nationally, she serves on the Executive, the Program, the Awards, and the Student Committee for the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education (AGHE). She is the second contact state liaison for the national Nurses on Boards Coalition. She is an abstract reviewer for three national scientific organizations, the Gerontological Society of America (GSA), the Society of Behavioral Medicine (SBM), and the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education (AGHE). She was appointed the GSA Ambassador for the University of Utah by the national organization.  

Her current research interest is the use of alternative, complementary, and integrative therapies to treat chronic conditions in older adults. Her reserach focus is mindfulness-based stress reduction as a treatment for urinary urge incontinence in older adult women. As a gerontologist, she studies the most marginalized populations in scientific research: older adults and women. 

Katarina was awarded three grants in 2016 from the UU CoN Hartford-Noorda Fellowship, the UU Office of the Associate Vice President for Health Equity and Inclusion, and the Gamma Rho Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International to support this research focus. She continues to present at national and international conferences. 

Her book, co-authored with Dr. Scott Wright, Toward Post Ageing: Technology in an Ageing Society, was published by Springer. She has published several articles in various scholarly and academic journals. 

Katarina entered the University of Utah College of Nursing PhD program in the fall of 2013. The specialty focus for her cohort is Aging, End-of-Life, and Cancer. She will defend her dissertation by fall of 2017.

She is a Noorda-Hartford Fellow, a Jonas Nurse Leader Scholar, and a Marriner S. Eccles Graduate Fellow.

Career Highlights

Katarina Felsted was appointed as the director of the Gerontology Interdisciplinary Program in June of 2012. She collaborated with her colleagues and marketed the program and tripled the number of incoming MS students by the next fall.

Katarina worked diligently to bring a Minor to the Gerontology Interdisciplinary Program and this went through the entire process, including approval by the Board of Regents, and was put into place by Fall 2013.

Katarina was awarded a Faculty Innovation Grant in February of 2013 to execute a curriculum to reduce ageism in middle schoolers. She is conducting several studies simultaneously, on frailty in older adults, pelvic floor disorders &resilience in older adutls, and mindfulness based stress reduction &urinary urge incontinence in older adults. 

Katarina applied to and was accepted into the College of Nursing Cancer, Aging, and End-of-life PhD Cohort, in the spring of 2013. As a result, she recruited a stellar new director for the program, Dr. Kara Dassel, who became co-director in August of 2013 as Katarina began her doctoral studies in August of 2013.

She is a Noorda-Hartford Fellow, a Jonas Nurse Leader Scholar, and a Marriner S. Eccles Graduate Fellow.

In November of 2014, Springer Verlag published her first book, Toward Post Ageing, co-authored with Dr. Scott Wright.