Certified Nurse Aid (CNA) training programs are offered mostly by 2-year colleges across Colorado. These programs can be completed in as little as a semester in some cases. Some programs have classes available in the evening, though most are offered during the day. Students will need to be CPR certified before starting a program. In addition to classroom work, students gain practical experience through clinicals, labs and simulations.
Aims Community College
Aims Community College, with locations in Greeley, Fort Lupton and Loveland, has a one-semester nurse aide program that can be completed in four weeks. During the 110 hours of training, students attend lectures, complete simulations, do lab skills and complete clinical training at health care facilities. All students must attend an orientation. Aims Community College offers many student services, including personal counseling, tutoring and supplemental instruction, computer learning lab and student support services.
Arapahoe Community College
Littleton-based Arapahoe Community College has a one-semester nurse aide program that includes theory/lab courses and clinical work at various facilities. Admission is on a first come, first serve basis. Graduates are prepared to work in hospitals, acute care, hospice and long-term care facilities. In addition to affordable tuition, Arapahoe Community College offers small class sizes, library services and a career center.
Colorado Mesa University
Located in Grand Junction, Colorado Mesa University (CMU) offers a nurse aide program through its Western Colorado Community College (WCCC). Students learn about patient care and basic nursing assistant procedures with an emphasis on the geriatric population. The program consists of at least 107 hours of study. Resume, cover letter and interviewing workshops, career fairs and a career resource center are just a few of the many services provided to students by the Career Services department at WCCC/CMU.
Colorado Mountain College
Situated in the Colorado Rockies, Colorado Mountain College offers a nurse aide certificate program at its Edwards and Rifle campus locations. Upon completing the 120 required contact hours, students have the skills to work with acute care patients and are eligible to take the NNAAP exam. Various student services and resources are available through the college's Success Center, which is offered through the Student Services and Resources division.
Community College of Denver
Located in Denver, this public school offers a nurse aide certificate program that prepares students to take the nurse aide competency exam. Through classroom studies and 40 hours of clinical practice, students learn to provide basic nursing and personal care skills. The program also covers OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) and HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) regulations. Applicants must take basic skills assessment tests. The college offers various programs designed to prepare students to join the workforce in their chosen careers.
Emily Griffith Technical College
Emily Griffith Technical College, located in Denver, prepares students to work as nursing assistants, home health aides and companion aides through its nursing assistant program. The program, which includes theory and clinical experiences, can be completed in 4-6 weeks. In addition to offering various class schedules, the school also provides students with job placement assistance.
Front Range Community College
Front Range Community College (FRCC) offers nurse aide training at its Westminster, Larimer and Boulder County locations. The five-credit hour program is a full-time program that includes day classes and clinical rotations for hands-on training. Graduates of FRCC's nurse aide training reportedly have an above-average pass rate on the nurse aide certification exam.
Morgan Community College
Morgan Community College is located in Fort Morgan and has a five-credit hour nurse aide training program that includes lectures, lab courses and clinical experiences. Students entering this program must satisfy program prerequisites and admission requirements, including providing a CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) card. Job/career guidance and placement, tutoring services and the Student Center are just a few of the resources available to students through the college's Student Services division.
Pueblo Community College Nurse Aide Program Pueblo
Pueblo Community College (PCC) in Pueblo offers a nurse aide program that admits students on a first come, first served basis. In addition to classroom studies and clinical rotations, the program includes a course that prepares students to take the NNAAP exam. According to PCCC, graduates of the school's healthcare programs have job placement rates of almost 100% percent, with many being hired prior to graduating.
Red Rocks Community College Nurse Aide Lakewood
Lakewood-based Red Rocks Community College offers a nurse aide program that includes both day and evening classes. Clinicals may be held at various times of the day. Students complete at least 107 hours of training. In addition to other admission requirements, participants must have CPR certification and be at least 18 years of age. The college boasts of offering healthcare training programs that are affordable, short, and hands-on.
To become a CNA (certified nursing assistant or aide) in Colorado, students must complete a state-approved training and competency evaluation program. Students must pass the National Nurse Aide Assessment Program (NNAAP), an examination administered by Pearson VUE. When the student passes the exam, Pearson VUE adds the student's name to the Colorado Nurse Aide Registry and provides the student with a license. CNAs must pass the competency exam within 24 months of completing the training program. The schools outlined below are among those with state-approved training programs that prepare students to take the CNA competency exam. Students may be required to meet specific health requirements and submit to drug screenings and criminal background checks prior to starting clinicals. Prior to enrollment, students should double check to make sure the program they wish to take is approved by the Colorado Department of Public Health.
School Comparison Table
|School Name||School Type and Setting||CNA Programs Offered||Program Cost|
|Aims Community College||two-year, public; small city||Nursing Aide Certificate||$687.75 in-district; $882.75 out-of-district; $2,477.75 out-of-state (2018-2019)*|
|Arapahoe Community College||two-year, public; large suburb||Nurse Aide Program||$1,457.40 resident; $3.665.40 non-resident (2019-2020)*|
|Colorado Mesa University||four-year, public; small city||Nurse Aide Program||$1,860.50 in-state; $3,700 out-of-state (2019)*|
|Colorado Mountain College||four-year, public; fringe rural||Nurse Aide Certificate||$400 in-district; $900 in-state; $2,265 out-of-state (2019-2020)*|
|Community College of Denver||two-year, public; large city||Nurse Aide Certificate||$1,169.50 (2019)*|
|Emily Griffith Technical College||two-year, public; large city||Nursing Assistant Program||$933 (2019-2020)*|
|Front Range Community College||two-year, public; large suburb||Nurse Aide Certificate||$1,590 resident; $3,124.50 non-resident (2019-2020; excludes fees)*|
|Morgan Community College||two-year, public; fringe rural||Nurse Aide Certificate||$242.90 per credit hour resident; $624.90 per credit hour non-resident (2019-2020)*|
|Pueblo Community College||two-year, public; midsize city||Nurse Aide Program||$2,305.03 resident; $4,358.38 non resident (2019)*|
|Red Rocks Community College||two-year, public; large suburb||Nurse Aide Program||$744.50 for residents (2018-2019)*|
Source: *Schools' websites.