About Community Health Worker

Build a career advocating for health and social justice.

The CHW Program trains and certifies students to work in the fields of public health, health care and social services. Community Health Workers (CHWs) provide a wide range of services, including health outreach and education, client-centered counseling and case management, and client and community-based advocacy. They work to reduce unequal rates of illness and death between different communities and to promote health equity or justice, prioritizing communities with the greatest health risks.

Explore Potential Careers

Studying Community Health Worker can lead to a variety of different jobs or career paths. Below are just some of the many options you will have!

  • Community Health Worker
  • Promotor de Salud
  • Case Manager
  • Outreach Worker
  • Health Navigator

Program Options 

Click on the degree or certificate you're interested in earning to see a sample map of courses to take to complete your goal from start to finish. 

Please note that the course maps provided are just an example to help you get started. Please meet with a counselor to personalize the plan to you and your Academic goals. 

Certificate Overview

The CHW Certificate Program was established in 1992. The requirements for the Certificate are:

  • Enrollment policies, see how to apply (make link) 
  • 14 units of core courses (Health 201, 202, 203 & 203W)
  • 3-4 units of elective courses (see elective courses below)
  • A 120-hour internship placement (150 hours for paid internships)
  • A final Performance-Based Exam (PBE) administered by local public health experts

Elective Course Options

Students can select from the following courses to customize their certificate and receive training in different areas of emphasis such working with elders or youth, supporting people coming home from incarceration (re-entry) or supporting people living with HIV or Hepatitis diseases:

  • Health 10: Health and Aging.  3 units
  •  Health 64: Health Education Training: Skills and Practice.  3 units.
  • Health 65: Youth Development and Leadership. 3 units.
  • Health 66: Chronic Conditions Management. 3 units.
  • Health 67: HIV and Hepatitis Navigation Skills.  3 units.
  • Health 91C:  Hepatitis ABCs.  1 unit
  • Health 91H: Elder Abuse Prevention.  1 unit
  • Health 95: Transgender Health: Working with Clients & Communities. 1 unit.
  • Health 110: Health impacts of Incarceration.  3 units

NOTE: Students who enrolled in the CHW Program before the Fall of 2020 have Catalog Rights, and may choose to complete the courses that were required for a certificate at the time of their enrollment.  If you have questions about Catalog Rights, please contact the CHW Program Coordinator or Health Education Department Chair

Fall Semester 1 

Course Number Course Title Units Notes
HLTH 201 CHW Principles & Practice 1 5  
Elective Courses   3-4  

 

Spring Semester 2

Course Number Course Title Units Notes
HLTH 202 CHW Principles & Practice 2 5  
HLTH 203 Professional Skills for CHWs  2  
HLTH 203W CHW Internship Placement 2  

The CHW Certificate is designed to prepare students for employment and professional success.  Learning outcomes are based on input from local employers, program graduates who are working in the field, and research and emerging standards for the CHW profession.  

Upon successful completion of the certificate program, students will be able to demonstrate the following learning outcomes:

  • Analyze and evaluate public health concepts and information for health promotion.
  • Assess and integrate professional skills necessary for employment in the CHW field.
  • Evaluate and implement entry-level proficiency in CHW core competencies for working effectively with diverse individuals, groups and communities.
     
Course Title Units Notes

HLTH 59

Intro to CHW

1.0

Completed with a "C" or higher

Community Health Worker Certificate Program Admissions Procedures

To enroll in the Community Health Worker Certificate Program prospective students must complete one of the following options:

Option 1: Complete the 1-unit (18 hour) Pre-requisite Course – HLTH 59

  • HLTH 59 is scheduled each semester.
  • You must complete the courses with a grade of “C” or better 

Option 2: Current experience working or volunteering as a CHW

Submit an Application (see below) by the semester deadline. The application includes:

  • An Application Form
  • A Personal Statement regarding your motivation for enrolling in the program
  • A Letter of Recommendation from a Supervisor.  The letter of reference must document that you have at least one year of experience working or volunteering as a Community Health Worker or in related public health, health care, or social services position.

Admission Notes

To enroll in any of the CHW Certificates, you must also enroll in City College.  If you are not currently a student, please apply to CCSF.

Transfer Options

The program coursework you complete at City College will satisfy lower-division requirements for related majors at several colleges and universities. Start planning your transfer by exploring Community Health Worker programs at the following institutions: 

  • San Francisco State University
  • University of California, Berkeley

Have questions about transfer? Visit the Transfer Center for help, transfer information, and/or to speak with college representatives.