Free CNA Training from the Job Corps

There are many individuals who may feel defeated by circumstance.  The promise of a higher paying job and the ability to reach one’s full potential just doesn’t seem possible due to surmounting financial burden.  Many people are living from paycheck to paycheck while simply trying to care for themselves or their families.  Taking time off of work to attend classes and pursue a certification for a career as a Certified Nurse Assistant doesn’t seem tangible.  However, if you meet certain criteria, you may be able to obtain free CNA training via Job Corps.

Job Corps is a division of the U.S. Department of Labor.  Job Corps offers occupational training for a number of diverse career paths  including, masonry, carpentry, automotive repair, heavy equipment operations, computer tech training, medical assistant training and training for the C.N.A. as well.  Job Corp can even help you to obtain your G.E.D. in the event that you didn’t graduate from high school.  To qualify for Job Corp assistance you need only be 16 – 24 years of age, you must be a citizen of the U.S. or a legal U.S. resident, and you must meet the low income requirements as defined by the Job Corps for your state.

The way Job Corps works is to provide instruction through an education center where the student will reside until that training iscompleted.  Most students reside within the dorms of the center during training but there are instances where an individual may commute from home. The details of a commute would have to be confirmed through admissions counselor for the Job Corps in your state.  Typically, a student will be directed to the Job Corps facility nearest their home.  If you choose to live in the center at Job Corps you will reside in a shared space with up to 7 roommates.  There are separate male and female dormitories.  Children are allowed and child care is offered as well.  All of the assistance is at no cost to you.  Depending upon the length of your training and which career option you choose, Job Corps recommends that you reside at the center up to a full year to receive the full knowledge and societal benefit needed to achieve success.  You will have to speak to counselor at your training facility to find out what this means for your career choice, specifically.  You are free to leave the program at any time.

There are some other notable benefits offered by Job Corps as well.   Job Corps will actually pay you a modest living allowance while you are attending classes.  Apparently, as you progress in your training, your living allowance will increase as well.  By doing this, they relieve the financial burden from the student to allow them to focus solely on their career training.

There are some rules to follow while residing at Job Corps.  There is a modest dress code that must be followed and you may even be required to wear a uniform during your training hours.  If this is the case, Job Corps will provide a uniform for you.  If you are in pursuit of C.N.A. training you will most likely be required to wear scrubs in a clinical setting.

The C.N.A. training program through job Corps lasts about 8 – 12 weeks but training is provided at your own pace.    At the end of your C.N.A training, you will receive a nationally recognized certificate of completion.  You must then pass a state licensure exam to receive your certification.  Job Corps can even assist you in finding a place of employment at the end of your training.

If you are interested in a achieving a C.N.A. certification but feel you may not have the resources to get yourself started, then Job Corps may be a viable option for you.  You can go to the Job Corps website at and click on locations to find a Job Corps closest to you or you can request an information packet through the website.

Written by Stephanie Dubenezic RN, LPN

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