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Grant brings back nursing assistant program

June 2, 2014

New Berlin — The School District of New Berlin is one of 30 organizations and the only K-12 district in Waukesha County to receive a Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development Fast Forward Grant to prepare high school students for the future though training in high-demand job fields.

The grant will enable the New Berlin schools to reinstate an on-site certified nursing assistant (CNA) program.

Waukesha County Technical College will provide an instructor, and LindenGrove-New Berlin, a skilled nursing facility, will sponsor the on-site certified nursing assistant (CNA) lab, the resources needed for students to complete their clinicals, and an intent to hire students once they have passed the state CNA exam. The program will serve as many as 20 students each year.

The program will help provide qualified workers who are acquainted with the complexities of caring for an aging population, LindenGrove-New Berlin administrator Michael Zimmerman said in a news release announcing the program.

"We have always found that new hires coming from WCTC's programs have the right skills and knowledge to provide the necessary care to our elderly residents, shortening the learning curve," he said.

New Berlin students have already shown interest in this employment choice. Nine students are pursuing their CNA this summer with plans to be placed in a youth apprenticeship program at area healthcare providers. These students will be employed as CNAs their junior and/or senior years of high school and will be able to use that experience to help plan and pay for their postsecondary education.

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