Hot Degrees for Veterans and Military: Gerontology
What can you do with a Gerontology Degree?
Gerontology is the study of aging. A gerontologist is an expert in the process of aging and the many aspects of growing older. A gerontologist studies aging in individuals and also how aging and older individuals’ impact (and are impacted by) society as a whole.
A Degree in Gerontology lends itself to understanding of our aging populations, the older adults’ role in and influence on society, and also what the future holds for ourselves as we enter into older age.
A Degree in Gerontology can open doors to many different career paths. Great paying jobs in this area of study have opportunities in both the public and private sectors, and include jobs in a wide variety of careers such as:
- Health Care
- Social Work
- Public Policy
- Senior Care Administration
A Gerontology Degree can even provide opportunities to work for yourself by starting your own business or working as a consultant.
Is a Gerontology Degree hard?
A Degree in Gerontology is definitely not hard! In fact, a Gerontology Degree is a very interesting field of study, with the benefit of learning what to expect as you also age! Gerontology is a broad field, yet in its essence it is the understanding of older adults and how to help them age happily and healthily.
A Degree in Gerontology is an extremely wise choice as the job market related to older adults will grow dramatically with the aging of the Baby Boomer population. By 2030 the senior population (over 65 years old) will triple to over 70 million elders and comprise 20% of the US population. A Degree in Gerontology is poised for career growth as an aging population will increase demand for all things geriatric.
Getting a Degree in Gerontology
Associate Degree in Gerontology
An Associate Degree in Gerontology is a great starting point for those interested in the science of aging. With specialty focuses such as health care, law, public service, and senior care businesses earning an Associate Degree in Gerontology can set one on a successful career path and prepare for further education and career advancement.
Jobs you can obtain with an Associate Degree in Gerontology:
- Geriatric Nutrition Technician-Assist in the provision of food service and nutritional programs for seniors, under the supervision of a dietitian. Work in the public sector such as in senior centers and nursing homes or in the private sector such as elder care facilities or senior care businesses. Average annual salary: $31,000.
- Geriatric Wellness Coordinator-Educate seniors and geriatric populations in adopting healthy behaviors. Average annual salary: $35,000.
- Geriatric Nutrition Coach-Instruct senior individuals and geriatric groups in healthy nutrition choices and diets. Average annual salary: $43,000.
Bachelor’s Degree in Gerontology
Students can earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Gerontology and minor in a wide variety of specialties such as health care, elder law, and social services. Conversely, many interdisciplinary bachelor degree programs will offer a minor in gerontology. For many students, a degree in gerontology is the first step in becoming a certified gerontologist.
While earning a bachelor’s degree in an accredited school and program, a student seeking to be a certified gerontologist completes additional specialized training focusing on the physical and psychological (mental) processes of aging. Often times a certification will be offered in conjunction with an approved bachelor’s program or it can be earned separately. Certification as a gerontologist can be desired by students and employers but is by no means a necessity in securing an excellent job (and great salary) with a stand-alone Bachelor’s Degree in Gerontology.
Jobs you can obtain with a Bachelor’s in Gerontology include:
- Geriatric Community Health Worker-Assist senior individuals and elder communities to adopt healthy behaviors. Average annual salary: $44,000.
- Geriatric Nutritional Health and Wellness Coach-Instruct senior individuals and elder communities in healthy lifestyle choices. Average annual salary: $46,000.
- Geriatric Social Science Research Assistants-Assist social scientists in social science research. Help prepare findings for publication and assist in data management. Average annual salary: $51,000.
Master’s Degree in Gerontology
A Master’s in Gerontology would include at least one specialty focus such as health and wellness, law, public policy, therapies, social services, etc. Those earning a master’s degree can continue in their current career path with additional earning power, undertake supervisory roles, enter into research and publishing, or transition into teaching postsecondary gerontology students.
Jobs you can get with a Master’s Degree in Gerontology:
- Geriatric Health Education Specialist-Manage senior health education programs that help individuals, families, and senior communities adopt healthy lifestyles. Average annual salary: $61,000.
- Geriatric Dietitian and Nutritionist Specialist-Plan and conduct nutritional programs for seniors to assist in the promotion of health and control of disease. Average annual salary: $61,000.
- Geriatric Social Services Manager-Plan, direct, and coordinate the activities of a social service program for seniors. Average annual salary: $73,000.
- Postsecondary Teacher-Instructor for gerontology programs. Average annual salary: $74,000.
Doctoral Degrees in Gerontology
Go even further with your education and earn a Doctorate in Gerontology! Doctoral candidates typically focus on research; the possibilities for study and specialties is vast and able to be tailored to a student’s interests and desired research. Whether looking for a career in research with the government or in the private sector, starting your own business, or working as a professor a Doctoral Degree in Gerontology is certain to come with a large paycheck.
Jobs you can get with a Doctoral Degree in Gerontology :
- Geriatric Health Care Practitioners-Holistic health care providers with a focus on geriatric care. Average annual salary: $84,000.
- Geriatric Sociologist-Study senior populations including social institutions, individual and collective behaviors, analyze the influence on and of geriatric populations and groups. Average annual salary: $91,000.
- Senior Recreation and Entertainment Manager- Senior management position directing and managing activities and outreach programs for elder populations at public or private sector locations such as a senior care facility or senior housing complex. Average annual salary: $119,000.
Is a Gerontology Degree worth it?
A Gerontology Degree for military and veterans is one of the best ways to seek a career in an aging nation. Of course a Degree in Gerontology is worth it! Helping our aging communities along with learning what to expect as you and your loved ones age, this degree has so many benefits. There are an abundance of program options from online to campus-based along with dual degree programs. There are also a vast variety of specialties including senior living management, nutrition, law, and seemingly everything in between! A Degree in Gerontology provides graduates with a profitable career path, able to be customized for the future of their choosing!
VA-Approved Colleges with Gerontology Degree Programs
Ready to start your Degree in Gerontology? Check out these great programs! Some partner schools have paid for promotional consideration.
Quinnipiac University– Offers a Bachelor of Arts in Gerontology. Quinnipiac University has GI Bill approved programs, offers credit for military experience, awards credit for both the CLEP and DSST exams, and is approved for Tuition Assistance. Quinnipiac University is a Yellow Ribbon school and a MyCAA approved school.
Kent State University– Offers a Graduate Certificate in Gerontology and Gerontology as a minor for its undergraduate degrees. Kent State University has GI Bill approved programs, offers credit for military experience, awards credit for CLEP exams, and is approved for Tuition Assistance. Kent State University is a MyCAA approved school.
University of Nevada Las Vegas– Offers Gerontology as a minor for its undergraduate degrees. UNLV has GI Bill approved programs, offers credit for military experience, is approved for Tuition Assistance, and awards credit for the CLEP and DSST exams. UNLV is a MyCAA approved school and a proud participant in the Yellow Ribbon program.
Viterbo University– Offers Gerontology as a minor for its undergraduate degrees. Viterbo University has GI Bill approved programs, offers credit for military experience, and awards credit for the CLEP and DSST exams. Viterbo University is a Yellow Ribbon school, is approved for Tuition Assistance, and is a MyCAA approved school.
Oklahoma State University– Offers Gerontology as a minor for its undergraduate degrees. Oklahoma State University has GI Bill approved programs, offers credit for military experience, awards credit for the CLEP and DSST exams, and is approved for Tuition Assistance. Oklahoma State University is a Yellow Ribbon school and is also a MyCAA approved school.
Central Ohio Technical College– Offers something unique with its Case Management for the Healthcare and Gerontology Professional Certificate. Central Ohio Technical College has GI Bill approved programs, offers credit for military experience, and awards credit for the CLEP exam and the DSST exam. Central Ohio Technical College is a MyCAA approved school and is approved for Tuition Assistance
*All average annual salaries adapted and calculated from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics National Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates. For more information click here.
>> For more GI Bill-approved degree programs in Gerontology, please go here.
- Hot Degrees: Nutrition and Dietetics
- Mechanical Engineering: Degrees, Jobs and Scholarships
- Getting Your Master’s Degree Online
- Getting a Degree in Social Work
- Online Senior Living Management Degree
- Online Degrees in Health Services Administration for Military & Veterans
About the author
Born in SoCal yet raised Tampa, Florida - Leah earned her undergraduate BA in Liberal Studies from the University of Central Florida. Leah earned her MA in the MALAS at San Diego State University, while also completing a graduate teaching certificate in English for Secondary Education. An avid traveler, she has visited more than 60 countries. With the birth of her son Spencer in 2012, Leah embarked on her biggest adventure (yet) as parent and Coast Guard wife.