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How to Become a Gerontologist in Rhode Island - RI

Though gerontology is a wide-ranging and very diverse subject, encompassing allied health professionals of every make and type, there are still some general steps you should follow if you’re working towards becoming a gerontologist in Rhode Island.

  1. Figure out what aspect of the career best interests you. Gerontologists go on to counsel and help people suffering from dementia and Alzheimer’s at places like The Miriam Hospital, plan and administer nutritional programs at old folks homes, and set-up and guide elderly treatment programs at facilities such as Our Lady of Fatima Hospital.
  2. Once you’ve decided what sort of gerontologist you want to become, find the program that best suits your needs. Gerontology degree programs are offered online, at colleges and universities, and can take anywhere from one year, to more then six, to complete. The more complex and demanding the job you want, the longer you’ll probably go to school, and the higher level of degree you’ll need.

  3. Consider going to a school accredited by the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education, and, near graduation, becoming accredited by the Gerontological Society of America. In Rhode Island, neither of these steps are necessary for employment, but they give you a definitive extra edge on your resume, and let your professionalism and dedication precede you.
  4. Depending on what sort of career you’ve chosen, you may need to become certified or licensed. Occupational Therapists, Nurses, Audiologists, Psychiatrist, all those allied health professionals who studied gerontology, but whose practices are regulated by other bodies, will have to become certified and licensed through them before they can work. These processes usually cost a few hundred dollars, and require taking and passing and test, and filling out some paperwork.
  5.  Once you’ve graduated, and fulfilled any specific certification and licensure requirements, you’re eligible to begin your rewarding and exciting career as a gerontologist in Rhode Island.

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