2006-10-27 / Community

RDRC Launches Certified Nurse Assistant Program

Pictured: Rachel Forde (far right), RDRC's Director of Operations, and Robert Ward (second from right), Associate Director of Adult Workforce Programs, pose with the first Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) students from the RDRC course. Also pictured are instructors Smyrna Clause (far left) of the CWE and Program Director of the Health Institute and Baban Voneeden (second from left), CNA Instructor.Pictured: Rachel Forde (far right), RDRC's Director of Operations, and Robert Ward (second from right), Associate Director of Adult Workforce Programs, pose with the first Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) students from the RDRC course. Also pictured are instructors Smyrna Clause (far left) of the CWE and Program Director of the Health Institute and Baban Voneeden (second from left), CNA Instructor. The Rockaway Development and Revitalization Corporation (RDRC) expanded its workforce development programs by launching a Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA) course which began on September 11, 2006. The initiative, made possible by the New York City Council, is the first of a variety of health care classes to be offered. Instructors educate the students so they may obtain certification for employment in either hospitals or nursing homes. RDRC has partnered with the Consortium of Workers Education (CWE) to design and implement the health care training.

The CNA course consists of 268 hours of training: six weeks of classroom instruction, one week in a hospital setting and four days in a nursing home. It provides a well-rounded education giving students the ability to obtain hands-on experience and gain skills in different environments.

To obtain CAN certification, students must pass the New York State Boards. This enables individuals with an opportunity to create a career path, becoming Patient Care Associates or Licensed Practical Nurses which can lead to a profession as a Registered Nurse.

"This new initiative further demonstrates our commitment to developing human capital and transforming it into a skilled labor pool that can be accessed through collaboration with RDRC," said Kevin Alexander, Executive Director of RDRC.

The maximum of 15 students went through a screening process which included a review of their education, prior medical experience (if any) and a Test for Adult Basic Education (TABE) to assess reading and math abilities.

"This really creates a win-win situation for everyone in the Rockaways," said Smyrna Clause, Program Director of the Health Institute for the CWE. "There are many Health Care facilities in the Rockaways that are in need of qualified employees and the interest in the community to get into this field is very high." RDRC quickly reached its maximum number of 15 students for the program, prompting their decision to continue offering CNA courses as long as funding is available.

Additional classes will begin in the upcoming months and RDRC is currently interviewing applicants for the next CNA class. For more information, contact Corrine Smith, Case Manager, at (718) 327-5300 ext. 248.

For more information about other RDRC programs and services, log onto www.rdrc.org or call (718) 327-5300.

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