Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon Portland Community College

Gerontology Advocacy, Career Pathway certificate

Older adults listening to an instructor

Why choose the Gerontology Advocacy Career Pathway certificate at PCC?

The 39-credit advocacy certificate is designed to advance the knowledge and develop the skills of those working with older persons to support them in navigating health, care, aging services, and other systems, and in finding and utilizing the resources and services they need to thrive. The certificate is also appropriate for any professional working on policy and program development in aging, disability, and related services to enhance their ability to advocate effectively, to collaborate with other professionals and diverse stakeholders, and to ensure accessibility, equity, and inclusion for the clients with whom they work.

The courses in this Career Pathway certificate are wholly contained within the state-approved Gerontology AAS degree and are financial aid and veterans benefits eligible.

  • Social or Human Services Assistants: $13.75 to $19.53 per hour or $40,622 per year
  • Case Managers or Social Services Coordinators: $422.49 to $30.65 per hour or $63,752 per year

Award information

Awards with a icon can be earned completely online, or you can choose a mix of online and on-campus classes.

Degrees and certificates by number of terms to complete
Award Length Financial aid eligible Currently accepting students?
Career Pathway Certificate: Gerontology AdvocacyLess than 1 year

Learn more about Gerontology and all 6 awards available »


What will you learn?

Students completing this certificate will be able to:

  • Use Gerontological research and theories to plan, implement, and contribute to programs, policies, and social change strategies for and with older persons in professional, institutional, and community settings.
  • Communicate, collaborate, and access appropriate resources and services while working with other professionals and diverse stakeholders to advocate with and on behalf of older persons.
  • Adhere to professional and ethical standards appropriate to one’s Gerontological areas of specialty while managing one’s career and taking advantage of continuing learning opportunities.


Course listing for the 2020-2021 catalog year.

GRN 175The Aging Mind2
GRN 181Exploring the Field of Aging2
GRN 201Understanding and Ending Ageism2
GRN 240Care and Service Coordination3
GRN 245Introduction to Guardianship in Oregon1
GRN 247Applied Legal and Policy Issues in Aging2
GRN 280ACE: Gerontology Internship4
GRN 280BGerontology Internship Seminar1
GRN 282Gerontology Professional Seminar2
PSY 236Psychology of Adult Development and Aging4
SOC 223Sociology of Aging4
SOC 230Introduction to Gerontology4
SOC 231Sociology of Health & Aging4
SOC 232Death and Dying: Culture and Issues4
or SOC 234 Death: Crosscultural Perspectives
Total Credits39

What will you do?

Depending on their prior experience and education, Gerontology Advocacy certificate graduates assume positions in aging services, long-term care, and healthcare with job titles like the following:

  • Aging Life Manager
  • Care Manager
  • Care and Service Coordinator
  • Community and Social Service Specialist (or Manager)
  • Healthcare Navigator
  • Personal Advocate
  • Social and Human Services Assistant
  • Social Services Coordinator
  • Social Services Navigator

Next steps

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