The Gerontology Program is interdisciplinary in approach and designed
for students preparing for a professional career working with older
persons or students already employed in the human service field who wish
to refocus their skill to more effectively work with older persons.
Graduates of the program have continued on to many diverse careers. Some
provide direct care to older clients in such fields as care
management. Others direct offices of aging, nursing homes, assisted
living facilities or other age-related activities and programs. Some
graduates have brought their expertise to a field in the private sector
such as retirement planning, advertising or human services. Still
others have used their knowledge within present careers as educators,
clergy, or healthcare professionals. Some graduates have become
entrepreneurs, developing new services for an aging population.
The interdisciplinary approach to gerontological education
incorporates the contributions of biology, psychology, sociology and
spirituality as they relate to the natural processes and consequences of
aging. A strong emphasis of the program is cohort analysis,
recognizing how the experiences of each will shape their response to
aging. This academic foundation is complemented by relevant research
and data analysis in the field of aging studies, by skill development
courses, including those within the student’s specialization, and by
appropriate field experience.
The Master’s program offers three options for specialization: (1)
administration (focusing on planning and administrating programs for the
older persons) (2) counseling and direct service to older persons. (3)
thanatology (grief and berevement counseling).