In New Jersey there are several colleges that offer training programs to become nurses' aides. Vocational nurses' aides programs typically train people to become home health aides (HHAs) or certified nurses' aides (CNAs). Many programs provide training for professionals to work at hospitals and doctors' offices, and specialty training is available for working at long-term care facilities. Some colleges do offer evening programs, but all programs require students to participate in supervised hands-on learning. Read on to find out more information about the nurses' aide programs available at 8 schools in New Jersey.
Atlantic Cape Community College
Atlantic Cape Community College in Mays Landing is a two-year school with an enrollment of more than 7,500 students serving Atlantic and Cape May counties. Students who wish to enroll in the school's 90-hour CNA program must first pass a physical examination. Once enrolled, students will take 50 hours of classroom instruction, including a lab, and 40 hours of clinical experience. Students who have already passed the CNA program can choose to enroll in a 10-hour certification program for home health aides, which may increase their professional options.
Brookdale Community College
Located in Lincroft, Brookdale Community College offers associate's degrees in over 50 areas, as well as a number of continuing education programs. This institution offers a 96-hour certification program that includes instruction on legal and ethical concepts, physical care skills, and psychosocial care skills. Interested students must have a high school diploma or GED and pass a physical exam and background check. Once this course is completed, students may work in nursing homes, residential care facilities, home care facilities, and hospices.
Camden County College
Camden County College is a two-year college that enrolls over 14,000 students a year on four different campuses in three different towns: Blackwood, Camden, and Cherry Hill. This school offers a nursing assistant program based on a set of modules that instruct students in such topics as therapeutic and technical procedures, nutrition, psychosocial care skills, grooming care, infection control, data collection, and ethical behavior. Each student must have either a high school diploma or a GED, and he or she must pass a physical examination in order to enroll in this program. Students must also attend every class and clinical experience during the program.
Hudson County Community College
Hudson County Community College, located in Jersey City, is one of the fastest-growing institutions of higher learning in the state. The community education department offers an evening CNA training program that combines 50 hours worth of classroom studies and 40 hours of working in a long-term care facility with elderly patients. Students learn how to take vital signs and change bed linens as well as how to help patients with grooming and hygiene. This program is approved by the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services and will prepare students to work in hospitals, private long-term care facilities, mental health settings, nursing homes, and assisted-living facilities.
Mercer County Community College
Mercer County Community College is a two-year institution with locations in West Windsor and Trenton. This institution offers a 90-hour CNA program that provides 50 classroom hours and 40 hours of clinical instruction. Students who complete this program, which is approved by the NJ Department of Health and Human Services, will be able to work in long-term care facilities, adult and pediatric medical day care, senior housing, rehabilitation centers, and some hospitals.
Raritan Valley Community College
Raritan Valley Community College in Branchburg offers a for-credit CNA course that prepares students for the CNA licensure exam. This four-credit program combines classroom lectures, nursing labs, and clinical experiences. Upon completion, students will be prepared to work in long-term care facilities.
Rowan College at Gloucester County
Gloucester County College in Sewell is a two-year community college that offers CNA training as part of its continuing education department. The 90-hour nurse assistant training course includes training in basic care skills, communication skills, restorative care, infection control, body mechanics, bed-making, and the Heimlich maneuver. Certified nurse assistants can become certified home health aides with a three-day training course worth 15 hours of continuing education credit, which qualifies those who complete it to work in home care, assisted living facilities, and hospice care facilities. Alternatively, students who have not received CNA training can enroll in the school's home health aide program; this curriculum combines 76 hours of classroom instruction with 16 hours of clinical practicum. Gloucester County College also has a career services program to help students find professional positions.
Sussex County Community College
Based in Newton, Sussex County Community College offers two training options for potential nurses aides through its health sciences department. Students enrolled in the 90-hour CNA training will learn how to provide competent patient care through best practices in safety, exercise, nutrition, hygiene, comfort, and toileting. Studies will include 40 hours of clinical experiences, which is provided in partnership with the Homestead Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center and the Barn Hill Care Center. Tuition and fees may be waived for income-eligible students under the New Jersey Health Professions Opportunity Grant.
Usually, CNAs work at hospitals or nursing homes and provide basic care to patients. HHAs generally provide patients with basic care services at home. Personal care assistants (PCAs) may provide patients with basic care at hospitals or in a home setting. New Jersey requires all of these workers to be certified. To do so, professionals must meet state training requirements and pass state certification exams. Training requirements are mandated by the Nurse Aide in Long Term Care Facilities Training and Competency Evaluation Program (NATCEP) or the New Jersey Curriculum for Personal Care Assistants (PCA). Curriculum standards for the NATCEP include 50 classroom hours and 40 clinical training hours at a licensed care facility. PCA curriculum requirements include 69 classroom hours and 16 clinical training hours.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type and Setting||Nurses Aide Certification Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition and Fees|
|Atlantic Cape Community College||Two-year, public; rural fringe|| Certified Nurse Aide Program,
Certified Home Health Aide for CNAs Program
| $2,940 for Certified Nurse Aide Program including materials,
$337 for Certified Home Health Aide Program including materials (program costs 2016)*
|Brookdale Community College||Two-year, public; large suburb||Certified Nurse Aide In Long Term Care Program||$1,195 (program cost 2016)*|
|Camden County College||Two-year, public; large suburb||Certified Nursing Assistant Program||$4,320 in-district, $4,440 in-state, $4,440 out-of-state (undergraduate 2015-2016)**|
|Hudson County Community College||Two-year, public; large suburb||Certified Nurse Aide Program||$5,083 in-district, $8,743 in-state, $12,403 out-of-state (undergraduate 2015-2016)**|
|Mercer County Community College||Two-year, public; rural fringe||Certified Nurse Aide Program||$1,328 (program cost 2016)*|
|Raritan Valley Community College||Two-year, public; rural fringe||Certified Nurse Aide Program||$576 in-county, $716 out-of-county (program tuition 2016)*|
|Rowan College at Gloucester County||Two-year, public; large suburb||Certified Nurse Assistant Program||$1,599 for Certified Nurse Assistant Program (2016)*|
|Sussex County Community College||Two-year, public; large suburb|| Certified Nurse Aide Program,
Home-Maker Home Health Aide Program
|$6,000 in-district, $7,950 in-state, $9,900 out-of-state (undergraduate 2015-2016)**|
Source: *Schools' websites, **NCES College Navigator.