The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

Sustainable Community Health Promotion in Social Work Certificate


Students will learn to apply a sustainability framework to analyze social conditions and social poficles that facilitate or impede achievement of healthy people and healthy communities. Using the sustainability model as an analytical tool, students will propose policies and interventions to maximize the economic, ecologic and social well-being of individuals, families and communities without jeopardizing the health of other communities and future generations. 

Students who earn a graduate certificate in Sustainable Community Health Promotion in Social Work will be able to: 

  • Articulate a holistic definition of health that includes the social, economic and environmental conditions essential to the well-being of individuals, families and communities.
  • Communicate the significance of environmental justice in achieving health and well-being for individuals, families and communities.
  • Analyze the disproportionate environmental health risks incurred by members of vulnerable populations, including low-income people, people of color, and people with disabilities.
  • Apply a sustainability perspective to the analysis and development of social policies to promote health.
  • Advocate for sustainable food systems and community green spaces to facilitate physical and mental health.
  • Use a sustainability model to devise a community health promotion program targeting a locally identified health problem.
  • Work collaboratively with public health officials and medical providers to prevent disease by facilitating healthy lifestyle choices for people of all ages and abilities.

Admission Requirements

Students who have completed the MSSW foundation curriculum or who have been admitted to the 33-hour MSSW program (advanced standing program) are eligible to earn the certificate.


Application for admission must be submitted prior to the published deadline. The application is available at

Program Requirements

Required Courses - 12 Hours

SOCW 6315Social Work with Diverse Populations


SOCW 6332Social Work Practice with Latinos


SOCW 6342Advanced Policy Analysis and Development


Choose ONE of the following

SOCW 6336Advanced Macro Assessment


SOCW 6340Advanced Social Work Practice with Organizations


SOCW 6341Advanced Social Work Practice with Communities


SOCW 6395The Natural Environment and Human Well-Being


SOCW 6399Special Topics in Social Work Practice


Total Credit Hours: 12