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Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)

What is 'Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)'?

A certified nursing assistant is considered part of the interdisciplinary health care team and assists the registered nurse or practical nurse with providing nursing care to patients. Responsibilities include basic nursing tasks related to meeting physical needs and activities of daily living. In order to become state certified, the student must take a state approved program and pass a state-administered competency evaluation.

Is it for you?

Some nursing programs (PN/RN) require that a student be a CNA before they are accepted into nursing programs. Some medical schools recommend that pre-medicine students also work as CNAs prior to entering medical school. If you enjoy working with people, feel that you have a positive attitude, are dependable, kind, patient and could make a difference in the lives of others who have physical illness/disabilities, this may be the profession for you.

Jobs and Salary Expectations

There are multiple job opportunities in the health care field for CNAs. Currently CNAs may start anywhere from $9 to $10 per hour, and starting pay may be as high as $11 per hour in some agencies. Shift differentials are available for those who work evening and overnight shifts.

Program Faculty

COURSE Description

  • The content the CNA course follows the guidelines set forth by the State of Nebraska with specific learning objectives outlined for each unit of study. There are a total of 18 units in the program. Students are required to complete a competency skills checklist for each procedure presented. There is a quiz for every unit as well as a medical abbreviation test and a final exam. The class is approximately 82 hours and students must attend 77 of these hours. Student are not allowed to miss any clinical time and no more than five hours total in two-hour or less increments. There are approximately 59 classroom and lab hours and 22.5 clinical hours. There are various class offerings for day, evening, weekend classes, as well as several different locations. At the end of the program, a State Registry written and skills examination is given as part of the course.

Credit Classes and Registration

Students interested in a CNA course must submit the following to be placed into a class or onto a waitlist.

  • completed application signed and dated
  • completed, signed and dated technical standards form
  • a copy of their current TB test with results
  • a completed background check form
  • proof of English Proficiency

Please note: Continuance in the CNA course will be dependent upon the background check outcome. Students with a felony will not be allowed to complete a CNA course.

CNA classes fill quickly. Students should be prepared to send in their application as soon as classes are posted online for the quarter they want to attend. Upon receipt of your application, we can place you on the list to be registered; however, we cannot put you into a class or on a waitlist until we have received your paperwork, including the background check.

Registration for a CNA class is only through the Health and Public Services office unless you are registering for a Fremont class. Fremont classes will also be registered by Melinda Pitt at the Fremont Center. For questions, contact the Health and Public Service office at 402-738-4631.

There are no late registrations for CNA and students must be registered to attend a class. If you are not on an instructor's roster, you will not be allowed to stay in that class. Students may not drop into a class and hope they can stay.

Do not wait until the actual registration date to turn in your application. The class you wish may already be filled. You will not be registered if something is missing from your application packet (including the section number of the class you wish to take) or if you have a Business office hold when we attempt to register you. The student will lose their place in registration and may have to be placed on a waitlist if something is missing from the application packet. If you are having financial aid issues, let us know.

Please note: If you are enrolled in a CNA class that has not yet started and you receive notice that you have been disenrolled for non-payment, we do not automatically re-enroll you. You may be placed on a waitlist. It is the student's responsibility to see that they do not have an outstanding balance on their previous quarter classes.

Students cannot miss the first day of class, or they will be asked to drop their class.

Students cannot miss more than five hours total in the classroom, and only in two hours or less increments.

Students cannot miss any time during the clinical portion of the class.