How to Become a Gerontologist in Virginia - VA

Gerontology prepares you to apply specific skills to many aspects of the aging process. This means you might manage a geriatric health program, become a policy analyst on aging, or act as a resident manager in a healthcare facility. The human service programs in gerontology cover a broad spectrum of career possibilities. The gerontology certification in Virginia starts with the primary area you choose to work in. As you decide which area to focus on, you’ll find the Virginia Geriatrics Society will function as an excellent resource. This organization can offer relevant, up-to-date information about gerontology in practice within the state of Virginia.

Because of the flexibility of training, the first step is deciding if you want a broad based education in gerontology, or a specific degree with a geriatric focus. This is also a good time to consider whether you want to teach or do research, as these career paths require a master’s or doctorate degree. If you choose a specific degree program such as nursing, for instance, your training will include a certificate in gerontology along with your nursing degree. The certificate is part of your postgraduate work and issued by the educational institution you attend. The certification program is typically made up of 15 credits in coursework specific to adult development and aging. After you are finished with school, joining the Gerontological Society of America (GSA) will give you the professional support and continued training opportunities you need throughout your career.

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