February 23, 2005
Contact: Sandra Rodriguez (860) 522-1111 x235
“Bridges to Health Care Training”
Provides “Career Ladders” for Certified Nurse Aides (CNAs)
Unique Pilot Program Officially Launched
Press Conference, Capital Community College – 2nd Floor Community Room,
950 Main Street, Hartford, February 28th, 2005 – 4pm
HARTFORD – Capital Workforce Partners (CWP), a workforce development partnership in north central Connecticut, has recently been awarded a grant to manage a pilot program designed to prepare Certified Nurse Aides (CNAs) for more advanced allied health or related fields. This 60-week program, officially launched with its first day of classes on January 31, 2005 and is expected to conclude in May 2006.
“Providing a career ladder opportunity to these individuals is such a critical step in addressing today’s health care employment needs, in addition to building a skilled workforce into the future.” says Tom Phillips, CEO, Capital Workforce Partners.
Leading this initiative along with Capital Workforce Partners is Capital Community College, Capitol Region Education Council (CREC) and the 1199 Training and Upgrading Fund. Speaking at the press conference will be Mayor Eddie Perez, Booker DeVaughn, Capital Comm. College’s Interim President, Capital Workforce Partners’ Tom Phillips, CREC’s CEO, Bruce Douglas, and 1199’s Steve Bender. Also, since this program is up and running, four students will share their experiences. Says Marie Spivey, RN of Capital Workforce Partners, “This unique partnership and the investment provides professional advancement opportunities to 25 fortunate health care nurse aides, and is so important to addressing staffing needs throughout our healthcare community as the nationwide shortage of nursing and allied health professionals heats up. The Hartford area is stepping up to the bat to take some of the necessary steps to deal with the shortage of skilled health professionals.”
Twenty-five (25) employed CNAs with a high school diploma or GED have been recruited from a variety of sources. The participants are now earning college credits applicable to continued study as well as specialized employability skills training applicable to their field of study. The program provides a “bridge” to other educational programs that will allow for personal career growth, advanced opportunities for individual and family economic success, and a more quality diverse workforce in the Hartford region.
Graduates of the program will have many options. Some may specialize in an allied health field (i.e., X-ray technician), become an LPN or ultimately an RN through additional educational programs for which they otherwise would not be qualified, based on their academic skills and/or background. Most, if not all, of the successful participants will also be eligible for an Individual Training Account (ITA) or other educational grants that will facilitate their continuing education and career advancement.
Capital Workforce Partners is the lead agency for this project, Capital Community College is housing and administering the pilot program, the 1199 Training and Upgrading Fund is providing employability skills enhancement training and CREC has provided a case manager and is responsible for tracking program outcomes.