DANVILLE – Danville Area Community College’s Adult Education Division seeks several individuals who are interested in earning their GED and a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) certificate at little to no cost.

Registration is being taken through next week for the Integrated Career and Academic Preparation (ICAP) CNA program at the Adult Education Division in Prairie Hall.

“At this time, there are a few spaces left. I’ve had referrals from the Community Action Agency and Vermilion County Works,” Susie Landers, assessment and retention counselor, said. “If they can, they should come here early next week to start the application process.”

Landers said she encourages students to take the application packets home overnight so they can review the material.

“There is a basic math test, and they must be at an eighth-grade reading comprehension level,” she said.

The program offers training experience and educational opportunities to prepare students to provide basic health care in hospitals and nursing homes.

Students enrolled in the program will take CNA training and GED classes at the same time. Classes start Tuesday, Sept. 24, and will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays until early December. The student will spend from 8:30-11:30 a.m. in the CNA classroom and then the rest of the day will be spent working on his or her GED/HSE.

Forty hours of clinical experience at a local nursing home will begin Dec. 10 from 8 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. Monday through Thursday and, during that time, students will not be working on their GED.

“This is an awesome opportunity,” Landers said. “If they have kids, the classes are held when the kids would be in school.”

The Adult Education Division has offered similar opportunities in the past for students to earn a certificate in automotive and in manufacturing while working toward earning their GED.

“The pathway we’re doing this time is health care,” Landers said. “We know there’s a need in health care. There are just so many jobs in health care.”

The program is grant funded and will pay for the costs associated with earning a CNA certificate and a GED for eight students.

“It’s a great opportunity because the costs will be covered,” Landers said. “The (grant) money will pay for the CNA portion, which is about $1,500, but we want them to be in the GED program as well and to take the test, so it would be a total cost savings of $1,600 to $1,700.”

To be eligible for the program, a student will need to submit to a fingerprint scan and be at least 16 years old. Sixteen- and 17-year-olds must provide proof of high school withdrawal to enroll in the program.

“They have to have a clean record because they will be working in a nursing home during clinicals,” Landers said. “They also need to have commitment because we require 100 percent attendance.”

Perfect attendance in the program is required for the state certification.

Students will be able to take the state competency exam at DACC, which will enable them to receive their CNA certificate.

“They can start off the new year in a new job,” Landers said.

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