Main Navigation Menu

Training for Professionals

National data shows that most aging service providers desire additional training on a wide variety of topics and issues relating to working with older adults. Grand Rapids Community College and the Older Learner Center offer a variety of periodic educational training and professional development opportunities for professionals that work with older adults, their families and caregivers. When available these training opportunities will be listed on this web page.

The Workforce Training office of Grand Rapids Community College also offers a wide range of non-credit education and training opportunities for area professionals


Regional Professional Forum and Luncheon

Please join us for a Regional Professional Forum & Luncheon to discuss the needs and issues of Grandparents Raising Grandchildren.

When:  Friday, May 11, 2012, 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM

Where:  Grand RapidsCommunity College DeVos Campus – Sneden Hall, Multipurpose Room (room 108)

415 Fulton St. E., Grand Rapids MI 49503

Cost: Complimentary, however, any donations received allow for continued and expanded services to grandparents in Western Michigan.

Please mark your calendar and plan to attend a special educational training forum and luncheon designed for professionals from the K-12 educational system and aging services provider network.  This session will educate you on the current needs, issues, and community resources available to grandparents involved in helping to raise their grandchildren.  This program is provided with funding from the Older American’s Act Title IIIE administered by the Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan. 

Program Agenda:

11:00 to11:15 – Welcome & Introductions

11:15 to 11:45 – Keynote Address by Dr. Henry Holstege (nationally recognized Gerontologist and Author)

11:45 to 12:30 -  Lunch with Video Presentation & Discussion

12:30 to 1:30 –   Grandparent Support Group Facilitator & Participant Panel Discussion

1:30 to 2:00 –    Wrap Up & Evaluation

Registration Information:

Registration is available by telephone, or online through the Grand Rapids Community College Workforce Training office.

Phone: (616) 234-3400

Online: www.grcclearn.com (click on Older Learner Center)

 

Aging Related Professional Training Opportunities

Grand Rapids Community College Certificate in Aging

Non-Credit Courses

The Grand Rapids Community College Certificate in Aging is a non-credit continuing education program in aging designed for professionals and others working with older adults, who are interested in learning how to be more effective in working with this population. This program consists of four (4) eight hour classroom-based courses held on Saturdays periodically throughout the year.  Check with the GRCC Workforce Training office for a current list of class offerings.

Aging 101 – An Introduction to Gerontology  
Instructor: Cindy Streekstra, RN

This course will explores issues vital to the growing aging segment of our population with its myths and realities; love, intimacy and sexuality in later years; social roles and relationships; work, retirement and economics; how the body changes in the aging process; and surviving growing older in contemporary America.

Upon completion of this course the student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of vital issues affecting the fastest growing segment of our population (older adults).
  • Apply theoretical concepts related to aging and the aging process to real-life situations; discuss the impact of these concepts on individuals, families, and society.
  • Identify factors relating to surviving growing older in contemporary America.

HealthyAging & Chronic Disease Management  
Instructor: Cindy Streekstra, RN

It is important for professionals working with older adults to understand the role of health promotion and chronic disease management in healthy aging. This course will explore common chronic health conditions and their management; the role of key elements of health promotion in successful aging; and the importance of educating older persons regarding healthy lifestyle choices and practices.

Upon completion of this course the student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the most common chronic health conditions effecting older adults; an increased understanding of a variety of chronic disease management techniques and there potential use with older persons; the key issues/concepts involved in aging related health promotion; and an understanding of how key lifestyle choices and health practices can impact healthy aging.
  • Apply learned healthy aging and chronic disease management concepts to real-life situations; discuss the impact of these concepts on individuals, families, and society.
  • Identify a plan for integrating aging related health promotion and chronic disease management concepts into work with older persons.

Caregiving 101  
Instructor: Cindy Streekstra, RN

Dealing with and/or caring for older adults can bring with it a broad spectrum of changes and pressures for which individual's are often unprepared. This course will help students to recognize and understand the key issues involved in caregiving; explore the dynamics of changing relationships as "children" become more involved in their parent's care, and parents face age-related changes and loss; learn about community resources available to assist family caregivers; and utilize effective communication techniques as well as learn how to understand, cope, and effectively deal with older adults in need of care.

Upon completion of this course the student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of key issues related to aging and caregiving.
  • Apply learned caregiving concepts to real-life situations; discuss the impact of these concepts on individuals, families, and society.
  • Identify community resources available to support family caregivers.

Death, Dying, and Bereavement  
Instructor: Cindy Streekstra, RN

It is important to recognize the emotional needs of those who have lost an older adult client or loved one. This course is designed to introduce students to a wide variety of issues relating to death, dying, and bereavement. It will cover historical perspectives; define death, attitudes toward death, the dying process, and grief and loss; as well as provide coping strategies for those experiencing the loss of an older adult client or loved one.

Upon completion of this course the student will be able to:

  • Understand death in a historical, medical and social context
  • Identify and examine the dying and grieving process
  • Apply theoretical concepts related to death and the dying process to real-life situations; and discuss the impact of these concepts on individuals, families, and society.

Continuing Education Hours (CE's) are available for Social Work and Nursing. A total of eight (8) contact hours will be granted for participation in each of the courses in this program. Those completing all four course offerings in this program will also receive a non-credit Certificate in Aging from Grand Rapids Community College.

Course and Program Fees : A fee of $150 (without CE's) or $160 (with CE's) per participant will be charged for each eight hour course; or $500 (without CE's) or $540 (with CE's) per participant for those enrolled in all four program offerings. Also, a discounted rate of $125 per course per person is available to organizations registering 2 or more participants.

To register, please contact the Grand Rapids Community College Workforce Training office (click on Social Work) or by telephone at (616) 234-3400.

Gerontology Certificate Program

With the older population expanding twice as fast as the general population, there is a growing need for knowledgeable, experienced and compassionate individuals to provide assistance and support to older adults and their families. The demand for qualified individuals to work in the field of gerontology is expected to increase much faster than average due to growth of the aging population and programs designed to provide services to older persons. The GRCC Gerontology Certificate is a 32 credit program designed for students who wish to obtain a certificate in gerontology only; choose to obtain a certificate in gerontology along with another degree; or have baccalaureate or advanced degrees, other professional degrees or certification and wish to obtain a certificate in gerontology. For more information contact Mike Faber at (616) 234-3483 or visit Gerontology program webpage.