Saint Joseph’s College of Rensselaer, Ind., is launching new applied health science classes in March 2020. The first class to be offered will be the certified nursing assistant (CNA) program. The nursing assistant is a critical member of any healthcare team assisting medical patients and staff. The state-certified program will provide students with the skills and knowledge to work alongside licensed nurses.

Students who study to be nursing assistants will be introduced to the necessary skills needed in taking care of patients in medical settings. CNAs work closely with patients, helping them with daily activities that patients may have trouble with on their own. CNAs will learn medical terminology, patient procedures, observation and charting and much more.

The CNA program has been approved by the State of Indiana Department of Health and Saint Joseph’s College campus is ready with a brand-new training lab. Students who successfully complete the 30 hours of classroom time and 75 hours of clinical training will be eligible to sit for their competency evaluation exam and apply for the certification.

The certified nursing assistant program is scheduled to meet four hours a day and students can complete the program in less than 13 weeks. As a CNA, students can pursue entry-level employment in a variety of healthcare settings, including nursing homes, assisted living facilities, hospices and more.

With the launch of the new CNA program in March, the first group of students will complete the program at the end of May. Additional nursing assistant classes will be offered later in 2020, with the next one beginning in June.

Jenny Jesko, the nurse who will be leading the CNA program. (Photo by Michele Meadows)

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