Director of Community Health
Sarah Flanagan MSW, MPA, LCSW
PH 402.552.6875  TF 800.647.5500 
FlanaganSarah@clarksoncollege.edu

Community Health Mission

Professionally prepare students to critically address, sustain, and improve community health needs using an interdisciplinary approach.

Community Health Overview

The interdisciplinary Community Health program prepares students for a variety of community health professions outside of direct patient care in the areas of gerontology, health care business, human services, public health, and women’s health.  The degree options are offered entirely online with select courses available on campus.  Students may complete courses year-round on a full-time or part-time basis.  The following Community Health degree options are offered:

  • Bachelor of Science in Community Health (Traditional, Post-Associate, Dual Degrees)
  • Certificates (Gerontology, Human Services, Public Health, Women’s Health)
  • Minors (Gerontology, Human Services, Public Health, Women’s Health)

Community Health Program Goals

  • Educate students through an interdisciplinary approach to community health populations.
  • Provide students with an understanding of how community health systems work.
  • Prepare students to drive positive change and improvement in the community
  • Provide an online avenue for degree completion and career advancement.

Program Specific Competency Goals

Upon successful completion of a degree in Community Health, graduates will:

  • Demonstrate proficiency in communication by organizing ideas clearly and effectively in written formats. (Communication)**
  • Incorporate communication strategies in collaborative relationships with clients and their families, community organizations, and/or other stakeholders. (Communication)**
  • Utilize critical thinking and problem solving skills to analyze community health needs. (Critical Thinking)**
  • Practice awareness of cultural, ethnic, age, gender, and lifestyle differences. (Diversity)**
  • Utilize evolving technologies proficiently in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of community health care. (Technology)**
  • Demonstrate ethical and professional conduct appropriate to the community health environment. (Professionalism)**

**Categories denoted in the parentheses represent relationship to Clarkson College’s student success skills, which are our institutional student learning outcomes, and include Communication, Technology, Critical Thinking, Diversity, and Professionalism. 

Community Health Degree Options

Bachelor of Science in Community Health:

The traditional degree option is for students with little or no transfer credit.  Students complete general education, core, support, and major courses in addition to four of the five concentrations which include Gerontology, Health Care Business, Human Services, Public Health, and Women's Health.

The post associate degree option is offered to students that have previously earned an associate degree from an accredited institution.  Post associate degree students receive 60 direct tranfer credits for general education and concentration courses.  Students complete core, support, and major courses and choose one of the five concentrations which include Gerontology, Health Care Business, Human Services, Public Health, and Women's Health.

The dual degree option is for students completing an associate degree at Clarkson College.  This option allows credits earned while completing an associate degree to be used directly toward a Bachelor's in Community Health.  The options include:

  • Dual degree: Associate of Science degree in Physical Therapist Assistant/Bachelor of Science degree in Community Health.
  • Dual degree: Associate of Science degree in Radiography/Bachelor of Science degree in Community Health.
  • Dual degree: Associate of Science degree in Health Information Technology/Bachelor of Science degree in Community Health.

Service reflects a holistic view that focuses on how individuals provide high quality, ethical and compassionate service in the field of health care and the community at large. Students will become familiar with service agencies, connect learning with practice and engage in civic service activities to live and demonstrate the Clarkson College Values of Learning, Caring, Commitment, Integrity and Excellence.

All students are required to complete designated service courses as a component of their program of study. Successful completion of service experiences is required to pass the designated service courses. Designated service courses are identified using the following symbol: ◊

Certificates

The 21 credit hour certificate programs are ideal for current health care practitioners or other individuals seeking to increase their knowledge and enhance their career goals. The certificate program courses were developed and are taught by a multi-disciplinary team of experienced and motivated faculty who are excited about sharing their expertise. Courses are offered year-round on a part-time or full-time basis.

Gerontology - These courses will explore the physical, psychological, social and cultural aspects of the lifelong aging process and how to effectively provide supportive care for patients approaching the end of life. Contemporary policies, programs and services that impact quality of life, strategies used to develop programs for the older adult, and the fundamentals of long-term care management will also be discussed. Students will be prepared to work as home health and palliative care professionals, as long-term care managers or housing specialists focusing on the needs of older adults, just to name a few.

Human Services - This program will provide students with an understanding of the role, history, and importance of human service agencies. Characteristics of populations served, problem solving skills used to assess the needs of clients, the impact of family dynamics, crisis intervention techniques, and the importance of ethical decision making are also explored. Students will be prepared to work as health and wellness directors, child and family services specialists, youth program directors, abuse prevention program coordinators, disaster relief specialists, and community services managers.

Public Health - These courses will explore public policies that support individual and community health, epidemiology, and population-based health sciences. Students will also learn how to diagnose problems, develop programs to educate and empower people about health issues, and the importance of research to uncover new insights and innovative solutions. Students will be prepared for positions in environmental health, community health, corporate health and wellness, as well as biostatistics and informatics and health education

Women's Health - This program offers comprehensive study of historical and current issues related to the growth and development of women. Psychological, social, and behavioral influences along with the political, cultural and geographical factors will be explored. Students will be prepared to work as patient service representatives, sexual assault services program coordinators, domestic violence prevention educators, victim assistance advocates, youth ministry coordinators, and child/family services case workers.

Minors

Students may earn a minor in conjunction with any Clarkson College degree program. The Community Health minors will complement any major program in a health care related field and will provide the background for students to work in a wide variety of health care settings.

Gerontology  - The Gerontology minor is for students interested in the physical, psychological, social, and cultural aspects of the lifelong aging process. Coursework will explore contemporary policies and programs that impact quality of life, how to navigate current regulations, and the fundamentals of long-term care management. Students will also learn how to provide supportive care for patients approaching the end of life.

Human Services - The Human Services minor is for students interested in helping vulnerable people become more self-sufficient and learn new skills. Human Services professionals coordinate the provision of basic needs for clients who are unable to care for themselves.

Public Health - The Public Health minor is for students interested in disease prevention, health promotion, and emerging issues impacting public health and how changes in our health care systems impact these areas.

Women's Health - The Women’s Health minor is for students interested in the study of historical and current issues related to the growth and development of women. Psychological, social and behavioral influences along with social, political, cultural and geographical factors will be covered.

Undergraduate Community Health Courses

This course will introduce the role, history and theory of human services. The goal is to provide a context for understanding the societal need for human service workers from intake to discharge. The focus will be on understanding the framework for connecting people with the community services they may need, from a strengths-based perspective. This class requires an off-site service commitment in order to provide an opportunity for real world application.

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This course will address human services practices and policy focusing on historical and current developments and content of the key social, legislative and governmental programs designed for groups in need across the lifespan. The course will consider factors that contribute to vulnerability. Students will explore and identify the eligibility requirements, barriers, and provisions of the programs related to vulnerable populations.

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This course serves to examine relationships within family systems across the life span, and their reciprocal relationship with cultural and societal dynamics. An overview of family systems theory will serve as the foundation for exploring topics such as healthy relationships, problem solving, communication, conflict resolution, decision-making, time- and stress-management.

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The objective of this class is to help students effectively and efficiently identify appropriate resources for their clients/patients in need. Students will explore ways to help people in need identify their difficulties and create a co-planned approach to possible community assistance. Students will learn how to advocate for special populations and gain an understanding of creating a resource databank for themselves.

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This course explores the historical development, current operation, and future trends of criminal justice. Students will begin to understand the major components of the system: police, courts, and corrections. Students will develop an awareness of the intersection of healthcare and the criminal justice system, focusing on both mental health issues and health disparities.

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Grant writing is an important skill for professionals in a variety of settings. Students will learn the basics of grant writing, including needs assessment, identifying potential funding sources, creating goals, and identifying assessment plans.

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This seminar addresses different types of crises that may impact individuals, families or communities. A framework for assessing and intervening is offered and integrated throughout the following possible topics: substance abuse, mental health, medical crisis, acts of violence, natural disasters, death and loss. Information on family dynamics, self-care, stress relief and coping is included.

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This is a foundational course for health professionals in the field of infection control in all health care settings. This course integrates microbiology, infection prevention, and patient care practices as applied to a population-focused practice. It provides major emphasis on risk identification and prevention strategies.

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This course investigates physical, chemical and biological risk factors that may contribute to human disease. Disease processes, manipulation of the environment to prevent disease, and therapeutic interventions to cure diseases will be discussed.

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This course provides an introduction to women's health. A review of the historical and current issues related to the growth and development of women and the barriers to maintain a healthy lifestyle throughout the lifespan.

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This course examines psychological, social, and behavioral influences on women's health. It focuses on the relationship between lifestyle factors and mental and physical health in women. Topics covered include high-risk health behaviors, stress, weight, sexuality, fertility, and promoting health and wellness among women.

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This survey course explores women’s health as portrayed in literature, including the multiple challenges women face in a healthcare context, particularly, though not limited to, women as the healthcare patient and women as the healthcare provider. Students will analyze literature both past and present to illuminate the complications and significance inherent in women’s health.

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This course will examine recommended actions to promote a health literate society and how to be an advocate to not only the patient and family but at a local, state and national level. Content areas include an exploration of verbal and written techniques, tools and interventions implemented to ensure health information is clearly communicated and promotes patient access and resources for quality care. Students will also learn key principles and strategies of how to effectively provide resources to a variety of patient populations and improve health literacy, along with different methods of evaluating literacy and its impact on health. This is a designated service course.

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This course will explore the anatomy and physiology of adult body systems, age-related changes in structure and function and age-related disorders. Epidemiology of the major chronic diseases, risk factors, methods of prevention and current methods of treatment will be discussed. Students will also learn about the impact of physical activity and recreation, nutrition and infection control on health and disease in the aging population.

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This course provides an overview of the psychological and social aspects of aging. The demographics of aging and the impact of aging on social institutions will be examined. This course provides an analysis of the individual and society, and an exploration of the changing roles and status of the aging population. It addresses both normal aging and psychopathology. Implications for cultural diversity and at-risk populations will also be explored.

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This course surveys contemporary policies, programs and services for an aging population and explores the impacts of an aging society on financial planning and retirement. Students, caregivers, professionals, family members, and friends are equipped with information to provide quality care for elderly people while taking care of their own needs for support and rest. Focus is on understanding a multidisciplinary approach to community, home, and institution based care which addresses social and ethical issues, problems, policies, and programs that affect the quality of life for our rapidly aging population. This course explores specific health needs of aging individuals and assists students in identifying techniques and strategies used in developing programs for the older adult.

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An integrative course in which students will apply current events and knowledge gained in earlier coursework to gerontology related areas such as advocacy, professionalism, family and work space issues, education, vulnerability, and legal issues.

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In this course, students will analyze information concerning future trends in Public Health Care using methods learned in Advanced Statistics. Students will also look at demographics, facilities, educational infrastructure and law, and analyze how future trends will affect public health.

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This course will look at the concepts of community building and health improvement. Students will identify strategies for stakeholder outreach and implementation of community health initiatives. Active public engagement will assist with the exploration and identification of established programs within a community of interest.

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This course examines women’s health with an emphasis on global issues. Social, political, economic, cultural and geographical factors influencing women’s health will be explored. Students will examine the basic health needs of all women and compare the availability of and types of services in different parts of the world.

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This course examines the mental health of women throughout the lifespan, considering strengths and challenges related to life events and family roles. Topics such as sleep and self-care, substance abuse, co-dependency, anxiety, post-partum depression and empty-nest phenomena will be explored. Additionally, the effects of violence against women will be discussed to examine how violence affects the mental health of women.

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This course examines the role of mammography in breast cancer detection. Breast cancer risk factors, the need for screening, breast health strategies and available technology will be discussed.

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This course examines pharmacologic agents used during pregnancy, labor and delivery, and postpartum. Oral and long acting contraceptives, menopausal hormone replacement therapy, and the pharmacologic prevention and treatment of osteoporosis will also be discussed.

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This course examines preventative and restorative topics relevant to women’s health, such as incontinence, lymphedema, breast/ovarian/uterine cancer, pelvic floor dysfunction, and how to stay active throughout the lifespan to maximize quality of life.

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The fieldwork experience allows students to combine academic theory with new, career-related experience in their area of professional interest. Students must gain permission from the advisor before enrolling.

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The capstone experience requires students to conduct programmatic research and implement a service project in their area of professional interest. Students must gain permission from the advisor before enrolling.

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Last updated: 08/27/2018