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Nine students graduate from Blinn College Certified Nurse Aide Program

Program prepares students for in-demand roles as essential caregivers

Program prepares students for in-demand roles as essential caregivers

November 5, 2020

The Blinn College District recently recognized nine Certified Nurse Aide Program graduates who have acquired the skills necessary to serve as compassionate and vital health care workers.

Ashley Ahlhom, Sara Brown, Jasmine Green, O’Shaunna Hancox, Bailey Hartl, Jamie Krauter, Jordan Kurtz, Jamie Siegert, and Addyson Williams completed the coursework and clinical training needed to take the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services Exam to become Certified Nurse Aides (CNAs).  

“The community need for these dedicated caregivers has only been amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Karla Flanagan, Dean of Technical and Community Education. “These students support our most vulnerable population and the training they receive from our experienced faculty prepares them to pass the state certification exam and enter the workforce with the skills necessary to make an impact on patients’ lives.” 

CNAs often are employed in nursing or elderly care facilities, where they frequently serve as principal caregivers. They often have more contact with residents than other staff members, and their responsibilities often include answering call lights; communicating with residents, family members, and staff; serving meals; and organizing residents’ rooms.

“I am hoping to become a doctor and wanted to find a job that would allow me to get more clinical experience,” said recent graduate Sara Brown. “With this program, I’ve been able to learn more about the practical parts of medicine and caregiving and how each person plays a role in providing care to a patient or resident.”

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national demand for CNAs is expected to grow 8% between 2019 and 2029, generating 119,500 new jobs. Texas ranks among the top states in the nation for number of people employed as CNAs.

Blinn’s 120-hour CNA Program is offered in Bryan and Brenham and consists of two courses that run concurrently. The first course introduces students to basic patient care, including feeding, bathing, grooming, changing linens, transporting patients, infection control, and safety procedures. CNAs also may assist with taking residents’ temperatures, pulse rates, respiration rates, and blood pressure. The second course includes clinical work at area facilities where students get hands-on experience caring for patients. The total cost for the program is $1,000.

“Certified Nurse Aides play a critical role on the overall health professions team,” said Jay Anderson, Vice Chancellor of Health Sciences, Technical Education, and Community Programs. “Health care facilities remain in great need of these professionals.”

The CNA Program is part of Blinn’s Division of Technical and Community Education, which includes courses designed to provide students with the knowledge and ability they need to enter the workforce immediately after completion. Many of these classes do not require a high school diploma and enrollment is fast and easy. For non-credit courses, students do not need to go through the College’s admissions process to enroll. Programs vary in length and are offered with daytime, evening, and weekend options.

To enroll in Blinn’s CNA Program, students must first participate in a mandatory online healthcare information session.

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