Preparation & Advancement
A nursing assistant must be 18 years of age.
Training courses are offered in community colleges, nursing care facilities, and vocational and technical schools. Many NA-Cs are trained on-the-job or via employer-provided classroom instruction. Previous work experience is not usually required.
Certification is required for nursing assistants working in nursing homes. (Requirements vary by state.) Many graduates obtain employment before becoming certified. With certification, salaries should increase. If employed by a nursing facility in Washington, a nursing assistant must become certified within 120 days from her/his first day of employment.
NA-Cs can train to become LPNs and advance to become RNs through a community college program. Further education can lead to a BSN or MSN.
NA-Cs also may choose to prepare to become Medical Assistants.