The career of the certified nursing assistant can be very gratifying for those who have thought of working with patients in a medical environment. They work under the direct care of the registered nurse, providing service to the patients that the nurse would delegate to the certified nursing assistant. Most CNA’s work in hospital environments, nursing homes for the elderly, some are employed by retirement facilities that provide assistance in everyday tasks. Most of the duties that the CNAs perform involve personal care duties as in bathing, dressing, administering medications at appropriate times, helping with exercise and assistance with meals.

The benefits that they can give to the elderly or infirm helps them to retain their dignity, in trying times. It does take a special kind of person to become a certified nursing assistant, for the job is not a glamorous one, and sometimes one’s character can become challenged by what their patients have to go through. To have the ability to make a difference in one’s life and give true compassionate care is what nursing is all about.

All in all, if you have thought of nursing, as a career for your future, becoming a certified nursing assistant is a great way to enter the field for the greatest exposure in the medical field, working with registered nurses, and providing the very best care for all patients.

Education And Training

When you think of becoming a certified nursing assistant, the first thought is where do I go to school for this certified career, what is involved, can I work and go to school? How long does it take? It just may surprise most that there are many opportunities for one to become educated for this career.

One can easily find educational resources for certified nursing assistant training. One of the most popular and easiest method is the online classes. All materials are available online, which makes studying for this career an easy transition, even for those currently employed and wish to change careers.

Most of our local community colleges, as well as, medical career colleges offer a very comprehensive certified nursing assistant program. The benefit of these educational sources is the fact that many have payment plans, scholarships or accept financial aid. These options can help the student significantly, as their financial outlay can be reduced significantly.

Many of the courses required for the certified nursing assistant training program are rather routine from one school to the next in preparing the student for the state licensing exams, which will honor the student certified and ready for gainful employment. Among some of the mandatory subjects studied would be: The Fundamentals of Nursing, Anatomy and Physiology, Nursing Assistant Skills, Medical Ethics, Emergency Medical Training and various other courses. Each school usually has a set number of hours that are required in classroom work and additional clinical hours to fulfill before the student is ready for their license exams.

Finally, one option that many do not realize is available to explore, is the benefit to those who become trained in lieu of a working commitment to the facility that is providing the training. This would mean that if you were to work for a nursing facility or hospital, they would in turn provide the education for free that you would need to pass the licensing exams, and in turn, you would agree to commit to working with them at their facility for a said period of time, which could range from 3 to 6 months. This option works very well for those who need to work, but also want to further their career with certification.


Salaries for the entry level positions in the certified nursing assistant field can vary from one facility to the next. While the salaries may be lower in the beginning, ranging from $19,000 to $30,000, depending on the part of the country one lives, bonuses and incentives can also be offered as bargaining tools, as well as, timely reviews and periodic pay raises. Often times the employee can be offered an hourly rate instead of a yearly salary.

One of the most important factors in realizing the salary that one would like to have, is education. It is a simple fact that the more education and experience that one has would deem them more attractive to a prospective employer. Continuing one’s education is a worthy investment in oneself and alerts an employer that you are a valuable candidate, who takes pride in increasing your knowledge with medical education. Such advantages are usually compensated with more frequent financial increases and bonuses.