Pathways in Geriatrics

Whether you're a nurse, pharmacist, physician, physician assistant, social worker, or other type of healthcare professional, a career in geriatrics can take many forms, just as it can offer many rewards.

Geriatrics professionals provide care to older adults, but they also teach in health professions schools, conduct research, educate policymakers, and oversee administration at a variety of healthcare institutions. Explore the career pathways below to learn more about the variety of ways you can make geriatrics your professional home.



Clinicians are the doctors, nurses, pharmacists, social workers, physician assistants, and other healthcare professionals whose main career focus is to see and treat patients. In geriatrics, being a clinician often involves working to coordinate care with an interprofessional team of colleagues.

Learn about the education & training needed for the geriatrics workforce from the Association of Directors of Geriatrics Academic Programs (ADGAP).


Educators are healthcare professionals who teach medical and healthcare professions students. Most of these teachers are Clinician Educators who split their time between seeing patients and training the next generation of geriatrics health professionals. 

Get resources for educators from the Association of Directors of Geriatrics Academic Programs (ADGAP).


Administrators are health professionals, often clinician educators or researchers, who also oversee a team of coworkers within their department or division. They help make decisions for their institutions while advocating for the needs of their team.


Researchers are the doctors, nurses, pharmacists, scientists, social workers and other healthcare professionals whose career focus is finding evidence-based answers to the health and social issues that concern older adults. A researcher may or may not also have a clinical practice. He or she often works in interdisciplinary teams, across many hospital and academic settings.



Advocates are health professionals and other stakeholders who stay engaged with legislative rules and regulations that affect their work or the people they serve. Anyone can be an advocate for our health, independence, quality of life, and care as we age. Visit our Advocacy Center to see how you can show your support, or click the link below to read the profile of a geriatrics advocate.

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