Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) are without a doubt the backbone of the healthcare industry, as they often spend much more direct time with patients than other members of the team. As a CNA, you're not only an invaluable asset to the patient, but also to the medical team as a whole. Perhaps the most important attribute of a successful CNA is empathy. Nursing assistants are required to have compassion and patience for those they are caring for.
Certified Nursing Assistant programs in the state of Illinois are specifically engineered to instruct and train students to act as integral members of healthcare teams, under the management of registered nurses (RNs) and/or licensed practical nurses (LPNs), in a wide variety of settings.
Individuals seeking to pursue a career as a Certified Nurse Assistant should attempt to seek out and attend the very best programs available to them. Prospective CNA students should take the following measures into consideration when looking for top programs:
Prior to being certified, prospective CNAs must first complete an Illinois-approved nursing assistant program. Elementary nursing assistant training programs cover state-mandated material, and will include at least 80 hours of in-class theory instruction as well as 40 hours of onsite clinical skills training. Like the vast majority of other CNA state certification examinations, prospective CNAs from Illinois are required to pass two sections of the exam: written and oral. Once a student has passed the exam, they are then placed on the state CNA registry.
Shawnee Community College
Founded in 1967, Shawnee Community College is a state-funded, post-secondary educational institution located in Ulin. SCC represents one of 48 two-year colleges that compose the Illinois Community College System (ICCS). Currently, the college enrolls approximately 2,388 students.
SCC offers students a 6.5 credit hour Certified Nursing Assistant course that’s composed of 80 hours of in-class, theoretical instruction, and 40 hours of on-site clinical skills training at a local healthcare facility.
Healthcare facilities located near the city of Ulin currently hiring CNAs
- Integrity Healthcare Communities
- The Lutheran Home
- Addus Homecare
CNA students who are planning on enrolling in SCC’s program are required to pay an approximate course registration fee of $1,328.
Lewis and Clark Community College
Originally established as far back as 1838, Lewis and Clark Community College is a 2-year, post-secondary institution located in the St. Louis Metro-East area of Godfrey. As of today, L&C Community College serves nearly 15,000 students with its eight campuses across the region.
L&C Community College’s CNA program has been known to produce top class CNAs. Throughout the program’s duration, students will be required to attend 80 hours of in-class, theoretical instruction, in addition to 48 hours of clinical training at a long-term care facility or hospital. The 6-unit NUAD 120 - Basic Nurse Assistant Training course is the course prospective CNAs will take at L&C Community College. It’s not uncommon for these local long-term care facilities and hospitals to recruit L&C Community College students after they graduate.
Healthcare facilities located near Godfrey that are currently hiring CNAs
- Heritage Operations Group, LLC
- Robings Manor Rehabilitation & Health Care
- Gateway Regional Medical Center
For those students who reside In-District, the total estimated cost of attendance is approximately $750. For individuals coming from outside of the district, but still inside of the state, the cost is approximately $2,250. Lastly, students coming from outside of Illinois will be required to pay a total estimated cost of attendance of $3,000
City Colleges of Chicago
First established in 1911, The City Colleges of Chicago is an arrangement of seven different community colleges and six satellite campuses which provide educational opportunities to those residing in the Chicago metropolitan area.
City Colleges of Chicago offer students a Basic Nursing Assistant Training Program five times throughout the year. Like many other CNA training programs, City Colleges of Chicago’s BNATP consists of a theory portion and clinical portion. The in-class, didactic portion of the program is held 3-4 days per week for 6.5 hours each day, adding up to a total of the required 80 hours by the program’s end. Students then complete 40 hours of clinical skills training at a local hospital or long-term care facility. Morning classes are held from 8:00am to 3:30pm, while evening classes are held from 4:00pm to 9:30pm.
Healthcare facilities located near Chicago that are currently hiring CNAs
- Sinai Health System
- Avanti Wellness and Rehab
- Tristate Healthcare Services
For students who reside In-District, the total estimated cost of tuition is approximately $949. For individuals coming from outside of the district, but still inside of the state, $2,490 is the estimated cost. Those coming from outside of Illinois can expect to pay $3,126.
College of DuPage
College of DuPage is a state-funded, postsecondary educational institution with a main location in the city of Glen Ellyn. The College of DuPage also maintains smaller satellite facilities in Addison, Stream, Naperville, Carol and Westmont. The institution was originally founded in 1967. Today, College of DuPage serves over 28,000 students, making it the second largest provider of education for undergraduates in the entire state of Illinois.
College of DuPage offers prospective CNA students a 6-unit program designed to prepare students as entry-level healthcare providers. The nurse assistant training program is to be completed in one semester. In that semester, both classroom instruction and a clinical skills portion are to be completed.
Healthcare facilities located near the city of Glen Ellyn currently hiring CNAs
- Natus Medical Incorporated
- Rehab Without Walls
The total cost of tuition for In-District students is approximately $816. Students coming from parts of the state outside of the district will be required to pay $1,938. Those coming from outside of Illinois will be required to pay a total estimated cost of attendance of $2,358.
Spoon River College
Originally founded in 1959, Spoon River College represents one of the 48 community colleges in the state that are a part of the Illinois Community College System (ICCS).
SRC offers students a 7-unit nursing assistant program constructed specifically to prepare individuals seeking employment as assistants to registered nurses (RNs) in a wide variety of healthcare settings including hospitals, home health settings, and nursing homes. The program is composed of two sections: in-class, theoretical instruction as well as onsite clinical skills practice.
Healthcare facilities located near the city of Canton currently hiring CNAs
- Courtyard Estates of Farmington
- UnityPoint Health
- Courtyard Estates of Bushnell
In-District students are required to pay tuition of roughly $1,120. For individuals coming from outside of the district, the tuition rate is $2,331. Out-of-state students can expect to pay $2,583.
Originally established in 1967, Parkland College is a two-year community college located in the city of Champaign. The college is a member of the Illinois Community College System and serves approximately 18,000 students annually.
Parkland College offers students a 6-unit, one semester CNA certificate program that’s approved by the Illinois Department of Public Health. The program offers courses during the daytime as well as evening hours. Students are trained in basic anatomy, nutrition, personal supportive care, and other topics. Upon successful completion of the program, students can sit for the Illinois nurse aide state competency exam.
Healthcare facilities located near the city of Champaign currently hiring CNAs
- Illini Heritage Rehab & Health Care
- Clark-Lindsey Village/Meadowbrook Health Center
- Helia Healthcare
Students who reside In-District have a tuition rate of $984. Out-of-district students will be required to pay $2,220. Those coming from outside of Illinois will be required to pay a total estimated cost of $3,174.
Located in Cicero, Morton College is the second oldest community college in the state of Illinois. The college was originally established in 1924, and currently enrolls around 5,000 students
Morton College’s 7-unit CNA program is composed of two courses: NUR-105 Basic Nursing Assistant Training and NUR-106 Advanced Bedside Care Technician. MC maintains affiliation agreements with a number of extended care facilities, healthcare agencies and hospitals in the Chicago area that regularly employ graduates.
Healthcare facilities located near Cicero currently hiring CNAs
- Premier Healthcare Management
- University of Illinois at Chicago
- Sinai Health System
In-District tuition is approximately $672. Out-of-district (but in-state) tuition runs around $1,568. Those coming from outside Illinois will be required to pay tuition costs totaling $2,016.
Kaskakia College, originally established in 1940, is a post-secondary educational institution located in Centralia.
KC offers a one semester, 7-unit CNA program that goes by the code name NAST 160: Nurse Assistant. The course takes approximately 7 weeks to complete and is composed of a classroom theory portion and a clinical skills practice portion. Kaskaskia College sets itself apart from other programs by including a 15-hour training program dedicated to the care of patients suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease.
Healthcare facilities located near the city of Centralia currently hiring CNAs
- SSM Health
- Vernon Health Care Center
- HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital
Students enrolled in Kaskaskia College’s CNA program can expect to pay approximately $1,589.
Originally established in 1964, Triton College is a 2-year community college located in River Grove, quite close to downtown Chicago. In 2016, Triton College was ranked as the top community college in the state and the 25th nationally according to the salaries of TC graduates.
Triton College offers students a one semester, 7-unit program. Upon successful completion of the program, students are eligible to sit for the state certification examination.
Healthcare facilities located near River Grove currently hiring CNAs
- Abcor Home Health Chicago
- Heritage Operation Group, LLC
- Angel Caregivers
Tuition fees for In-District students is $861. Illinois residents who live out-of-district are required to pay a tuition rate of $2,243. Out-of-state students have an estimated cost of attendance of $2,813.
South Suburban College
First established in 1924, South Suburban College is a two-year, postsecondary educational institution located in the south suburbs of Chicago. SSC has two campuses; a main campus located in South Holland, and a secondary campus situated in Oak Forest. As of 2017, approximately 11,000 students were enrolled at South Suburban College.
South Suburban College offers students a 6-credit nurse assistant training program. The program mainly focuses on the instruction of basic nursing skills through both didactic lecture and supervised clinical skills experiences.
Healthcare facilities located near Chicago currently hiring CNAs
- University of Illinois at Chicago
- Sinai Health System
- Mercy Health System Chicago
In-District tuition runs approximately $912, while out-of-district Illinois students can expect to pay $2,100. Those coming from outside of Illinois have a tuition rate of $2,430.
Oakton Community College
Initially established in 1969, Oakton Community College is a two-year community college with campuses in Des Plaines and Skokie.
Oakton Community College’s 7-credit CNA program is administered under the course code banner BNA100 – Basic Nurse Assistant Training. The class seeks to teach students basic principles and procedures used by nurse assistants in various healthcare settings including long-term care, as well as home health settings and hospitals. OCC’s content mainly focuses on the geriatric population.
Healthcare facilities located near cities of Des Plaines and Skokie currently hiring CNAs
- Presbyterian Homes
- NorthShore University Health System
- Covenant Retirement
OCC’s tuition for In-District residents is approximately $953. Illinois residents who reside out-of-district will need to pay $2,569. Those coming from outside Illinois will be required to pay a total cost of $3,003.