Certified Nursing Assistants, or CNAs, enjoy incredible job security. For many, becoming a CNA is the first step in a long, rewarding career in nursing. If you live in California and aspire to become a CNA, the first thing to do is find and complete an approved CNA program. Many state-approved programs are available around the state. They typically consist of a combination of classroom instruction and hands-on practice at local facilities. Upon successfully completing your program, you will be eligible to sit for the state competency exam. With all of this in mind, take your time selecting a CNA program, and make sure it is approved by the state of California.
Five Popular California CNA Programs
Finding the right CNA program in California is important, but needn't be stressful. Kick-start your search by considering these five popular options:
- Summit Career College - The entire Certified Nursing Assistant program of the school costs $1,395. Located in Colton, California, Summit Career College's CNA program introduces aspiring CNAs to the medical equipment they will use. It also arms them with the skills and knowledge they need to take and pass the competency exam, which is administered by the State of California Department of Health Services Licensing and Certification-approved vendor.
- Sierra College - Located in Rocklin, California, this public community college offers a CNA program. The typical cost of the program, including tuition, books, uniform, and other fees, is around $1,000, which is quite affordable. Once you have successfully completed the program, you will need to take and pass the State of California licensure examination before you can apply for employment.
- Santa Rosa Junior College - With an approximate cost of $700-800, which includes tuition, textbooks, uniforms, evaluation fees, lab pack, parking, and miscellaneous expenses, this Petaluma-based school offers among the affordable options for obtaining your CNA license in the state of California. Its Certified Nursing Assistant program, which is administered by its Health Sciences department, includes 226 hours of instruction across approximately 10 weeks. The program includes lectures, skills labs, and clinical practice at local facilities.
- Bakersfield College - By earning your Certified Nurse Assistant certificate from this Bakersfield, California, school, you will have the credentials you need to sit for the competency exam administered by the American Red Cross. Approximated cost is $1,050, so it is an affordable and convenient way to get the ball rolling on a career in nursing.
- College of the Sequoias - If you live in or near Visalia, California, and dream of becoming a CNA, you can consider the CNA program at this popular community college. Its nursing assistant course prepares students to take and pass the competency exam that is administered by the State of California-approved vendor. Approximated program cost is $1,024-$1,214. Like most CNA programs, this one includes a mix of clinical practice at local facilities and in-class instruction.
The key to becoming a CNA and finding a job quickly is taking and passing the state competency exam and obtaining your license. You can't accomplish any of that without completing a state-approved program, so investigate the options highlighted above to get your search off to a great start.