If you live in Washington State and are eager to break into an exciting career in nursing, becoming a Certified Nursing Assistant, or CNA, is a great first step. To get the ball rolling on your new career, you will need to complete a state-approved CNA program. Luckily, there are tons of different options all across the state, so there are sure to be plenty near you. Familiarize yourself with popular programs for CNAs in the state to get a feel for which type of program is right for you.
Five Popular Washington CNA Programs
With so many CNA programs in Washington, it's easy to feel overwhelmed when attempting to select just one. The top five options in the state are a great place to start your search:
- Clark College - This Vancouver, Washington-based school has an average in-state tuition of $3,650 for full-time students. Its Nursing Assistant Certified Program is more affordable than that. Once you pass the program, you will be eligible to take the State of Washington Nursing Assistant exam to receive your certification.
- Bellevue College - Located in Bellevue, Washington, this popular school offers a convenient and affordable Nursing Assistant Certification Program that prepares you to take and pass the National Nurse Aide Assessment Program, or NNAAP, exam. The program consists of classroom, laboratory, and hands-on clinical practice in local facilities. It spans about three months, and tuition costs $1,211.76.
- Bellingham Technical College - If you live in or near Bellingham, Washington, this school should be right up your alley when it comes to starting your career as a CNA. Its Nurse Assistant Certificate program is approved by the Washington State Department of Health and consists of 8.5 credit hours of instruction. Upon completing and passing the course, you will be eligible to take the NNAAP exam. According to the school, 83 percent of graduates are employed within nine months of completing the program.
- Centralia College - With its convenient location in Centralia, Washington, Centralia College is a logical option for anyone in the local area who aspires to become a CNA. Tuition + fees for its Nurse Assistant Certification Program are $1,686.18 for in-state students and $1,838.24 for non-residents. Consisting of 18 credit hours, the program includes 45 hours of hands-on clinical experience at local facilities, including nursing homes, where you can hone your skills. Upon completing the course, you can sit for the NAC state certification exam and be that much closer to becoming a CNA.
- Clover Park Technical College - This Lakewood, Washington, school offers a convenient and affordable Nurse Assistant Certification Program that quickly and easily prepares you to take the NNAAP exam. Like many other CNA programs, it consists of a mix of classroom instruction and clinical practice. 60 of the program's 185 hours are dedicated to hands-on clinical education at hospitals, nursing homes, and other facilities, so you will get a strong sense for what it's like to work as a CNA long before you start applying for jobs as one.
In Washington State, CNAs are in extremely high demand. Average pay tends to be quite competitive too, so you will be able to hit the ground running on your career right after completing your training program, taking and passing your exam, and obtaining your certification. The sooner you start, the sooner you'll have a job as a CNA.