Why Many Nursing Schools Require Students to Hold a CNA Certification

If you have been looking into nursing school, you have noticed that many nursing programs require you to have your CNA certification before you can apply for the nursing curriculum.  You can receive CNA certification by completing an accredited nursing assistant certification program.  Additionally, you will need to receive a passing score on a certification exam. 

Completing certification as a nursing assistant will help to provide you with the building blocks for an education and later a career as a nurse.  There are many skills that you will learn when you are training to be a nursing assistant.  You will learn to assist patients with activities of daily living and even to oversee range of motion exercises for patients who need help with mobility. 

When you train to become a nursing assistant, you will learn to take patients vital signs and to record information in their chart.  Your training will teach you CPR and other basic first-aid and safety skills.  These skills will be valuable when you do your clinical rotations in nursing school and once you start working as a nurse. 

Many schools want people to work in the healthcare field before they make a final decision to apply to nursing school.  This helps to prepare students for the stresses and hard work of working in a healthcare setting.  Some people will be more ready than ever to train to become a nurse after working as a certified nursing assistant.  Of course, there will be other individuals who will realize that a career in nursing is not a good fit after all.

Training to be a CNA also provides you with access to employment while you attend nursing school.  You will be able to continue to gain valuable experience working in a hospital, continuing care community or home health setting.  You can transfer much of what you learn into your education to become a nurse.

Working as a CNA before and while enrolled in nursing school will provide you with a way to earn an income while you complete your nursing degree.  You will be able to earn money for your living expenses while you are in nursing school.  Your work as a CNA can provide you with income to help cover the cost of nursing school as well. 

Many nursing schools want you to be a CNA before they will consider your application to the nursing school or nursing program.  In fact, some schools will not even consider accepting you unless you are a certified nursing assistant.  These schools recognize the many benefits of training to be and working as a CNA before attending nursing school. 

If you want to become a nurse, you should consider starting out as a nursing assistant.  You can find CNA programs at many healthcare facilities and community colleges.  Some nursing schools offer CNA training as well.  Courses usually only last for a few weeks, though some training programs are actually for a few months.

This is a guest post by Sandra Stevens who is a blogger over at  She writes about and answers questions on all Nursing Assistant related topics.


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