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What to Ask Certified Nursing Assistant Colleges
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following pointers to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are many CNA schools and colleges within Arizona and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier pointed out, the site of the school along with the expense of tuition are probably going to be the initial two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final decision, 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 recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping ensure that you receive a quality education and employment in the South Tucson AZ area, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification criteria for CNAs differ from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum certification standards for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. In addition, contact the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some South Tucson AZ healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the CNA colleges 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It's also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the South Tucson AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for certification also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby South Tucson AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.