Rend Lake College’s Certified Nurse Assistant classes are offered tuition-free to residents of the RLC district, serving as a training for a new career or as a gateway to training as a practical nurse or registered nurse.
Openings remain available for the January start of this eight-week program. Classes are available at the RLC MarketPlace in Mt. Vernon, the Hamilton County Memorial Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in McLeansboro, and on the main campus in Ina. In-district students pay only lab and supply fees.
“For those out there who are interested in a career in healthcare, the field is abundant with opportunity, and the CNA program is a good way to determine if this occupation is a good fit,” said Kim Robert, Allied Health Division Chair at RLC. “While it is a demanding program, it is also a very rewarding line of work. Our faculty does an excellent job of preparing students for the challenges and experiences they will face throughout their nursing careers.”
Nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants help provide basic care for patients in hospitals and residents of long-term care facilities, such as nursing homes, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics. The Bureau indicates that employment of CNAs and related positions is expected to grow by 20 percent from 2010 to 2020, faster than the average for all occupations. This is due in part to the growing elderly population.
To enroll in the Certified Nurse Assistant program, students must take a reading placement test and submit to a background check as mandated by the Illinois Department of Public Health. In addition, students must be at least 16 years of age before completion of the course.
For those who want to develop their skills even farther, the eight-week Certified Nurse Assistant program also acts as a prerequisite for RLC’s Practical Nursing certificate program, which requires a year of training after three other prerequisite courses are completed (Anatomy and Physiology I and II, Rhetoric and Composition I).
The Associate Degree Nursing program, which prepares students to become registered nurses, is available for practical nurses who want to elevate their abilities. It requires a year of training after prerequisites are successfully completed.