About the Minor
Gerontology is the interdisciplinary study of the social, physical
and cultural dimensions of aging. Gerontologists are concerned with
creating environments for successful aging and with ensuring the maintenance
of quality life experiences for the aging in our population. Since
increasing numbers of Americans are living longer, there is a need
for people trained in understanding the complex interaction between
aging and society.
The gerontology program at Ramapo College is designed to introduce
students to the various aspects of aging: the biology of aging, the
psychology of aging, the sociology of the aging population, and issues
of death and dying. In addition, we require gerontology students to
do fieldwork with the aged or in an agency devoted to issues of aging
to enable the students to get hands-on experience.
The study of gerontology is highly recommended for students majoring
in social work, psychology, sociology, nursing, or business administration.
In addition to the gerontology minor program for matriculated students,
Ramapo offers a certificate program in gerontology for non-matriculated
students. This certificate program is designed for service workers
presently working in agencies or institutions with the aged.
Career options for gerontology students are expanding rapidly and
include administrative work in government agencies on aging, in hospitals
and nursing homes, and in recreational programs for older people.
Direct service provision may include home health care workers, social
workers, and hospital workers. In addition, there are burgeoning business
opportunities geared toward the older segment of the population.
The faculty who teach in the gerontology program come from a variety
of disciplines within the college, and collectively have tremendous
experience in the field. Some of their areas of expertise include:
- the development of programs for caregivers
- direct service provision for older adults
- art therapy
- issues of death and dying
- human development over the life cycle
- community programs for older adults