Engage-IL Prepares Interprofessional Student Scholars and Leaders to Improve Older Adult Health

Download 2024 SLIG Program Overview & Application Form

Course Goal: To enable health science students who are interested in geriatrics to acquire attitudes, values and competencies necessary for practicing comprehensive, patient- and family centered geriatric care, as part of interprofessional teams, in a variety of health care settings.

Eligibility Criteria: Health science students in the COM, CON, COP, AHS, SPH and JACSW who are in good academic standing per participating schools/colleges and who meet the below criteria are eligible to apply.  

    • COM students rising M2 students who have completed their M1 course work in the first semester successfully are eligible   
    • CON students only graduate students are eligible    
    • COP students P2 and P3 students are eligible   
    • AHS students who meet the additional criteria described below are eligible: 
      • For the Department of Occupational Therapy
        • Graduate students who are licensed occupational therapists (e.g., post professional OTD students, PhD students)  
          • Note: Due to schedule conflicts involving required courses and fieldwork, students enrolled in the entry-level OTD program are not eligible   
      • For the Department of Physical Therapy 
        • Current entry-level Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) professional program students (Please refer to details that follow)  
          • Note: Due to schedule conflicts involving required courses and fieldwork, 1st year and most  2nd year DPT students enrolled in the DPT program are not eligible.   
        • Second year DPT students whose summer clinical experience could not be scheduled would be eligible to apply. 
        • Graduate students who are licensed physical therapists (e.g. PhD students, MS in Rehabilitation Science students) in the U.S. or another country are also eligible to apply.  
      • For the Department of Kinesiology and Nutrition
        • Students enrolled in the graduate nutrition programs 
    • SPH students MPH, MHA and doctoral students are eligible   
    • JACSW students only graduate students are eligible

Application & Selection Process & Dates:

    • SLIG Course application submission deadline: February 15, 2024 
    • Notification to selected Scholars: by March 2024  

Applicants must complete the Program Application (Appendix A) and submit it by February 15, 2024 to engageil@engageil.com


Testimonials from Past SLIG Scholars

“I would highly recommend this course to my peers because there is such a deficit on education about geriatrics within the medical school curricula, and just from this course, my understanding of this field has grown, and i believe that this is a topic that every health professional should be familiar with as our aging population continues to increase and there is a high likelihood that no matter the field of medicine we’re in, we will encounter an older adult that needs us to know how to care for them.” – Medicine

“ENGAGE-IL SLIG is a fantastic program that helps deepen one’s understanding of the complex issues involving caring for and supporting older adults as they continue to age. To be an asset in their health and well-being journey, we must become aware of all their needs – acute and chronic health conditions, care transit ions, restorative/rehabilitation needs, palliative and hospice, and end-of-life. Learning how to engage as an interdisciplinary team and how to involve the family are also critical to providing a supportive, caring and trusting relationship for our patients.”Nursing

“I will approach the care of older adults keeping in mind their cultural values, ethics, and transitions of care.” – Pharmacy

“I understand ageism more and will be more intentional about the ways in which I perpetuate stereotypes and misconceptions. I understand my role within an interprofessional team to better meet the health needs of the older adult and feel more confident advocating for what is needed with other professions.” – Applied Health Sciences – Occupational Therapy

“Some aspects of care are highlighted through this course. That definitively is a takeaway for future healthcare professionals to implement in their respective fields of work.” – Public Health

“I really benefited a lot from speakers who asked questions that prompted critical reflections, for example the session on ethics really helped to challenge me to think about what my personal values as an individual person are and as a professional and the difference and influence of our values versus the patient’s values was so helpful in better understanding the roots of ethical tension. I also appreciated learning about current interventions and community resources supporting older adults, as I came into the course with no professional knowledge or education about geriatrics and now I am coming out of it with more confidence in what’s available in the aging network.” – Social Work

Funding: The SLIG course is funded by a federal grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Grant #U1QHP28730. The Dr. Akavut Suesakul Memorial Scholarship in Primary Care Geriatrics is funded by the UIC COM Department of Family & Community Medicine.  

For more details, please download the SLIG 2024 Course Overview & Application Package:

Download 2024 SLIG Program Overview & Application Form



Questions? Contact the Program Coordinator at engageIL@engageil.com


SLIG Course Co-Directors
Memoona Hasnain, MD, MHPE, PhD
Professor and Associate Head
Department of Family & Community Medicine
Associate Dean for Faculty Development
College of Medicine, UIC
Valerie Gruss, PhD, APN, CNP-BC, FAAN
Clinical Professor
Department of Biobehavioral Nursing Science
College of Nursing, UIC


Core Faculty
College Faculty Contact
Applied Health Sciences Elizabeth Peterson, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA epeterso@uic.edu
Medicine & Public Health Memoona Hasnain, MD, MHPE, PhD memoona@uic.edu
Nursing Valerie Gruss, PhD, APN, CNP-BC, FAAN vgruss@uic.edu
Pharmacy Michael Koronkowski, PharmD, BCGP koron@uic.edu





Jake Yaeger
SLIG Coordinator

Kanwal Haque, MPH
Research Associate