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Things to Ask CNA Degree Programs
Now that you have chosen which nursing program to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are a large number of CNA schools and colleges throughout Arizona and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the location of the school along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the CNA certificate program along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Aside from helping make sure that you get a quality education and employment in the Somerton AZ area, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification requirements for CNAs are different from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's essential that the school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to meet the minimum certification requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, get in touch with the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Somerton AZ healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the CNA schools you are considering what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It's also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Somerton AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for certification too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Somerton AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.