So you want to advance your caregiver career with a certification? Or take your first step into the nursing field? Or join one of the fastest growing careers in the nation? You need to take CNA classes! But here’s the catch – you’re on a pretty tight budget and you just can’t swing a $1,000 tuition fee right now. First of all, let me just say as a newly graduated college student, I hear you. Second of all, let me tell you finding a good AND affordable CNA program IS POSSIBLE, even on your budget! Let me offer some practical suggestions and tips for affording Certified Nursing Assistant Programs.
1. Check multiple schools in the area – Don’t just assume that the first nursing assistant classes you ran across are the best/most affordable option! Look around, compare program costs, ask each place about scholarships and grants they offer. Check places like local nursing homes, the American Red Cross, vocational schools, community colleges, or even local high schools. You’re sure to be surprised at what you find.
1. Scholarships – Suppose you find the most affordable program in your area and it’s still not really cutting it. Consider digging around for scholarships. They may be offered by local nursing facilities (with an agreement that you work for them). The American Red Cross has a stipend program in place in most of their locations. Or scholarships may be offered by folks like us here at myCNAjobs! Check out our Nursing CNA Scholarship opportunities and apply today!
2. Free programs – It’s true; free programs for CNAs do exist! Becoming a CNA can cost nothing at all if you look in the right places. One of the most common examples is nursing homes, assisted living communities, and other clinics that pay for CNA training in order to keep the graduates on staff as employees after the course ends. (See our news blog on a recent example of this: LA Nursing Homes Offering Free CNA Job Training.) Additionally, many programs for special groups (minorities, low-income, single-mothers, veterans, etc.) are available through churches, community centers, and other non profit organizations. (Read about an example of this in our blog CNA Class Graduates.)
Don’t give up hope on finding the right CNA program for you! Keep searching for the most affordable option – it might not jump right out at you, but you’ll find it. For a list of CNA schools in your area, use our handy-dandy CNA Class Finder. As always, good luck from the myCNAjobs team!