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Students interested in pursuing a graduate degree in Gerontology should contact the NEIU Graduate Admissions office in order to apply!

*NEW* AGHE Program of Merit Designation

In Fall 2013, the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education designated the NEIU gerontology program as a program of merit. This designation indicates that the NEIU gerontology program has a standard of excellence in both offering a quality education and career training for its students.

 Further merits of the Gerontology Proram include: Dr. Lisa Hollis-Sawyer receiving an American Psychological Association (APA) Division 20 Mentorship in Gerontology Award in 2014. 

Gerontology Student Testimonials

"My decision to study gerontology was further validated through the exceptional teaching methods by the professors in the department. I knew I would learn more about aging and issues related to aging; however, what I did not realize was that this program slowly structured me through academic education, hands on experience, and the ability to think outside of the current aging issues. The ability to perform outside of what is current and the ability to have an understanding that helps me at a very personal level and also allows me to help others in a way that I never thought possible!"
~Aroma Blomquist, M.A. in Gerontology Graduate (May 2016)

The Gerontology program at NEIU provided a unique educational experience that profoundly impacted my personal and professional life.  The program offered the opportunity to learn and understand various theoretical principles, and how those principles can be understood in our current political, social and cultural climate, as well as how our knowledge can be applied in real practical settings.  Most importantly, this program prepared me to work in the aging field.  This program is extraordinary because of the professors who continuously challenge students while giving support and guidance, and the students who bring diverse cultural and professional backgrounds and experiences allow stimulating learning experience.  

~Jessica Moon, M.A. in Gerontology Graduate May 2016

"The Gerontology Program at NEIU is an excellent foundation for anyone who wishes to change the future of the rapidly growing population of older adults. Offered courses examine aging from multiple perspectives, preparing students with the theoretical knowledge and practical experience. During the studies I gained the academic knowledge and skills that will definitely help me to better serve older adults."

~Katarzyna Zajac, M.A. in Gerontology Graduate May 2015

"Northeastern Illinois University's Gerontology Program provides you with a solid base for a solid future. Their interests in their students extends beyond graduation by offering guidance for academic and employment choices."
 ~Vincent Volpert, M. A. in Gerontology graduate, August 2015 
"I received much more than an education from this program. The Gerontology program provide me with numerous skills that I am currently applying to my personal and professional lives. Due to this program, I am able to educate my family about available older adults services to assist with the care of our aging parents. I have profound confidence that the education I received will benefit me in every aspect of my life."
~ Leticia Hill, M.A. in Gerontology Graduate August 2015 

Video Testimonials

     Video Link 1

     Video Link 2 

Program Mission

Established in 1991, the mission of the Gerontology Program at Northeastern Illinois University NEIU) is to contribute to the quality of life of older adults through education, research and community service. To that end, the program seeks to train practitioners through a broad education in the history, characteristics, and circumstances of this older population and prepare them to make a contribution to direct service, advocacy, and research. As such, this program is appropriate for individuals working in the field, for those seeking professional level entry into the field, and also for those whose interest is in studying aging for their own academic or personal growth.

Program Goals

The Gerontology Program is designed to meet the educational needs of a variety of student groups: those already working with the elderly, those contemplating a career change, and those working in other fields who wish to increase their knowledge of aging processes. To address these needs, students complete a set of required courses providing a solid background in the concepts of gerontology. Additional elective courses permit the student to gain expertise in either counseling/clinical or administration/social policy. This combination of general and specific course work prepares students for positions in direct service or in administration and policy analysis. The program is also structured to ensure the development of skills in both theoretical and applied research, enabling students to be proficient consumers, reviewers, and generators of research in gerontology.

Career Opportunities in Gerontology

The gerontology faculty members fully support our students in training for careers in the aging field. Check out information on various careers in the field at,,, and contact the program coordinator ( for further guidance in finding your career in a growing job market with an equally growing aging population.

M.A. in Gerontology Program Overview

The M.A. in Gerontology curriculum consists of 36 credit hours organized into three components: classroom courses, experiential learning, and independent research. Each of these components provides an opportunity for a specific type of learning; all are intended to be coordinated around the student's focus in the program. The classroom component will provide the theoretical knowledge and the academic skills necessary for success in the other two. The experiential component will give students the opportunity to apply, as well as to increase, their knowledge and skills by working in agencies and programs for the elderly in the greater Chicago land area. Finally, the research component allows students to integrate what they have learned from both of the above and to produce a thesis or pass a new comprehensive exam option that demonstrates their mastery of the interdisciplinary field of gerontology.

New Gerontology Senior Advocate Certificate Overview

The new post-baccalaureate Gerontology Senior Advocate Certificate curriculum consists of 21 credit hours encompassing core and elective classwork from the master’s degree program. Students take courses with master’s degree students and can transfer all 21 credit hours into the M.A. in Gerontology for continuing education purposes.

For more information, please refer to the list of options to the left to access important information about details of the program, tentative course offerings, and other information helpful to potential and current gerontology students.

Advising and Applying to the Gerontology Program

If you have any questions and/or would like to set up a meeting to discuss your interest in gerontology further, please feel free to contact the gerontology program coordinator for information:

Dr. L. Hollis-Sawyer, Gerontology Coordinator
Bernard Brommel Hall, BBH 307-E
Phone: (773) 442-5846

Dr. Masami Takahashi
Bernard Brommel Hall, BBH 307-A
(773) 542-5845

Generativity Club and SIGMA PHI OMEGA Honor Society

Dr. Takahashi is the faculty supervisor for both the gerontology club (Generativity Club) and the honor society in gerontology (Sigma Phi Omega). Please contact Dr. Takahashi for more information and how you can be involved!


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