Feb 20, 2024  
2023-2024 SGPP Catalog and Student Handbook 
2023-2024 SGPP Catalog and Student Handbook

Community Health Worker Certificate

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Program Description

A community health worker (CHW) operates in the health and social services arenas. A core role of a community health worker is to help individuals and communities navigate complex medical and social service systems. A CHW promotes wellbeing through health education. Students taking the Community Health Worker courses learn to combine technical skills, as well as language and cultural proficiencies, to advance preventative health and support people living with chronic illness.

Program Outcomes

  1. Understand the role, responsibilities, and limitations of a community health worker.
  2. Explain the legal and ethical guidelines around confidentiality, documenting and reporting, agency policies, and cultural considerations that a community health worker works within.
  3. Navigate complex medical and social service systems.
  4. Analyze resources to help individuals access needed supports.
  5. Advocate for individual, community and capacity building needs.
  6. Develop skills to communicate with individuals, communities, and providers to promote health and wellbeing.

Elective Structure and Delivery

The Community Health Worker Certificate courses are delivered fully online.  Courses can be taken in sequence as electives to meet general education requirements in bachelor of science completion programs or as a certificate.

Certificate Requirements

Certificate courses 14 cr.
Internship course 2 cr.
Total 16 cr.


Internship Course: 2 cr.

Bachelor’s Degree Completion

These certificate courses may be used to meet general education elective credits  in any Bachelor’s Completion program with permission from the Program Director.


The faculty members for this program have earned doctorate or master’s degrees. Faculty are selected for their combination of educational and professional experience and expertise.

Admission Requirements

The Community Health Worker certificate is open to all current and prospective students. Students currently enrolled in a Saint Mary’s University bachelor’s completion program are eligible to enroll in the certificate through the Change/Add Program process. Students interested should contact their Program Director.

Application Process

Applicants must submit:

  1. A completed application form
  2. An official high school or GED transcript issued to Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota. (waived if you have earned 14 transferable college-level credits or more.) 
  3. Official transcripts from all post-high school coursework including technical and community colleges.

Applicants from countries outside the U.S.

  1. A completed application form.
  2. High school transcripts and post-high school transcripts from countries other than the U.S. must be evaluated by a university accepted evaluation service, such as World Education Services, Educational Credential Evaluators, Educational Perspectives, or One Earth International Credential Evaluators and be deemed equivalent to accredited U.S. university standards).  Evaluations from an approved member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES.org) will also be accepted.  Any post-high school transcripts should be evaluated on a course by course basis rather than a general evaluation.
  3. English proficiency Exam - Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota accepts the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with a minimum score of 72, the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) with a minimum score of 6.0 the Michigan Language Assessment Battery (MELAB) with a minimum score of 74%, the International Test of English Proficiency (ITEP) with a minimum score of 4.0 or Pearson Test of English with a score of 51. We also accept the SAT with a minimum composite score of 1000 (minimum 480 in English) and Duolingo with a minimum score of 100.

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