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Gerontology

Credit Diploma (0231) and Certificate (3300) - Gettysburg, Harrisburg, Lancaster, Lebanon and York campuses
Gerontology (GERT) courses are only offered online.
Each one-credit gerontology course is approved for 12 continuing education credits for Personal Care/Assisted Living administrators.

Printable flier about the program
Gerontology Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) (pdf) rev 3/12

Required Courses (pdf) rev. 2/13

Estimated Expenses-both programs (pdf) rev 5/13

Description of Occupation
Gerontology programs are designed to develop sensitivity and competence for those individuals in allied health, social services, activities, business, marketing, wellness and administrative fields who work with the aging population. The course content includes basic principles and issues in gerontology, allied health, social service, mental health, psychosocial and wellness as well as 20 hours of service learning volunteering.

A wide variety of occupations utilize Gerontology:  nurse aide/nursing assistant, home health aide, practical nurse, registered nurse, social service worker, activity professional, and administration and management. Graduates will possess specialized knowledge in gerontology, allied health, social services, mental health/dementia and psychosocial aspects of aging.

Program Entry Requirements
Application to college, college placement testing in reading and writing. Students may also transfer in credits from other colleges to meet some requirements. Willingness to participate in volunteer service learning experience for a ten week period of 2 hrs/week for one semester. Students who have completed nurse aide certification and acquired work experience may be able to articulate up to 6 credits to the Senior Health Care – Workplace Assistant Diploma.

GERT 100, 101, 102 and 103 each meet 12 hours of continuing education credit per the DPW guidelines for Personal Care and Assisted Living Home Administrators and Direct Care Workers, and for RNs.

Length of Program and College Degree Conferred
The Gerontology Diploma is 17 credits. The Gerontology Certificate is 30 credits. The Senior Health Care – Workplace Assistant Diploma consists of 16 credits.  Courses can also be taken individually.

The program works well as an add-on to many health career and social services majors.  Why not have a second area of emphasis?

Employment Outlook
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 43% of adults will be 50 or older by 2010, with Pennsylvania having the second largest percentage of those over 65 in the nation. With this demographic trend, the need for well-trained, skilled Gerontology staff to serve the aging population will continue to grow dramatically throughout the 21st century.

Places of Employment
All facilities/agencies/institutions providing services to the aging population.  Gerontology students find employment with hospitals, home health agencies, retirement communities, social services providers, government entities, and a variety of businesses. 

Salary Range
Will vary according to level and type of employment.

Educational Advancement
Courses from this Diploma can be applied to other degrees at HACC.

Related Websites For Additional Information About The Profession
National Certification Council for Activity Professionals
Administration on Aging 
Career Infonet
Bureau of Labor Statistics
Direct Care Alliance

Program questions? Email gert@hacc.edu
Kathy L. Sicher, MHA, 717.780.2300 x710992
Annamarie Fazzolari, MHA, 717.780.2300 x 710663
Gerontology Co-Coordinators

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