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KIMBERLY BONVISSUTO | May 23,2022
Texas State University says it will offer the state’s first graduate degree in long-term care administration to address a “pressing demand” in the state’s economy.
The virtual program was approved Thursday by the Texas State University System Board of Regents as a Master of Science degree. The program, which can be taken full-time or part-time, will begin enrolling students this fall, pending final approval by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.
Program Director Michael Mileski told McKnight’s Senior Living that although the degree is specifically focused on a path to licensure as a nursing facility administrator, the degree also would help students pursuing careers in assisted living, independent living or any other setting along the long-term care continuum.
Mileski said the degree provides an administrator-in-training experience and is focused largely on National Association of Long Term Care Administrator domains, which can “easily be applied to anywhere in the continuum.” He said the university consulted with both the American College of Health Care Administrations and NAB, as well as several industry experts on what they needed in administrators.
Offered through the College of Health Professions and Graduate College, the program will build on state and national board’s minimum requirements to become a nursing home administrator. The program will incorporate environmental design and management, personnel management, elder abuse and mistreatment, and internship hours.
Mileski said the programs is largely focused on individuals looking for a career change, or students seeking a master’s degree program. And it offers in-state tuition to all students.
“We found that many administrator jobs posted were looking for masters level preparation,” he said. “This program is a great way to meet that need of the industry.”
The degree addresses “a need created by the rapidly aging baby boomer population,” according to the school, citing statistics that the older adult population is expected to double by 2030, resulting in a significant need for increased options for long-term care.
The Texas State program joins others that have launched in recent years, including a concentration in senior living in the Master of Management in Hospitality degree program at Boston University, an assisted living / senior housing administration concentration at George Mason University, a Master of Arts degree in senior living hospitality at the University of Southern California Leonard Davis School of Gerontology, an undergraduate senior living management major at Washington State University’s School of Hospitality Business Management under the Granger Cobb Institute for Senior Living, and an undergraduate degree in senior living management in University of Central Florida’s Rose College of Hospitality Management.
The University of Hawaii–West O’ahu also began offering a certificate in long-term care last fall to provide students with the skills needed to lead and manage long-term care facilities and community-based services.