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SHARP Program Overview

Skills for Healthy Aging Resources and Programs (SHARP) is a newly designed certificate program in Evidence Based Health Promotion (EBHP) for older adults that was offered at both College of the Canyons (COC) and Santa Barbara City College (SBCC).

This project funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Funds for the Improvement of Post Secondary Education (FIPSE) to UCLA included five partnering institutions:

What is Evidence Based Health Promotion (EBHP)?

According to the National Council on Aging1, EBHP is "a process of planning, implementing, and evaluating programs adapted from tested models or interventions in order to address health issues" in individual and community settings. It focuses on populations—like older adults—emphasizing both prevention and treatment. The U.S. Administration on Aging has sponsored EBHP and disease prevention programs within the areas of chronic disease self-care, physical activity, fall prevention, nutrition, depression and/or substance abuse since 2003. These programs are currently being offered to older adults by our community service providers in settings such as senior centers, hospitals, health clinics, and senior housing.

1National Council on Aging, Center for Healthy Aging. (2006). "Using the Evidence Base to Promote Healthy Aging."
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Goals & Objectives

The project developed and tested a new Career Technical Education (CTE) program to produce skilled educators to teach in evidence-based health promotion (EBHP) and disability management programs.

  • The SHARP Certificate orients students towards careers in aging and/or supplements other health professions majors. SHARP is the only college program to prepare personnel to work in community-based aging services and agencies that offers evidence-based health promotion and disease management programs.
  • Students use their fieldwork practicum to collaborate with community partners and gain strong practical experiences supporting, conducting and teaching EBHP community-based programs. SHARP focuses on the latest evidence for what works in promotion of older adult's health and helps establish positive partnerships with community organizations, such as local senior centers, faith based organizations, and health care organizations.
  • SHARP offers exposure and contacts with various employment pathways in the health and social service professions. The program meets the needs of students to gain practical skills in a short amount of time to work in the community with older adults.

SHARP Recruitment Brochure