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Free CNA Classes in Los Angeles

Attending a CNA program is an excellent way to get your foot in the door in the healthcare industry, but we’re aware that it can be awfully expensive to get started. Fortunately, some locations are offering free CNA training in Los Angeles for individuals looking to save a few bucks while learning the essential job skills needed to begin working as a nursing assistant. We’ll provide you some details and information on local programs so you can decide if any of them are a good fit for you. Plus, we’ll talk through some of the pros and cons of free CNA classes in Los Angeles (and in general).

Organizations With Free CNA Classes in LA

Los Angeles Education Corps

The Los Angeles Education Corps (LAEC) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization established in 2008, overseeing College Bridge Academy (CBA) and The Education Corps (TEC) charter schools, which operate in economically disadvantaged areas of Greater LA. These schools offer small learning communities for approximately 100-130 students, serving as a second chance for those seeking a high school diploma.

LAEC collaborates with high-quality nonprofits to provide wraparound services and holds accreditation from WASC. They offer a CNA Training Program for individuals aged 18-24 interested in healthcare careers, allowing participants to earn a CNA credential while attending an on-site high school.

Learn more: Los Angeles Education Corps

Program InformationDetails
CostNo cost
Program Duration14 weeks
Class SchedulesContact LAEC for current schedule
Certification EligibilityEligible for state CNA exam
Location1403 S. Union Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90015
Phone(323) 316-2125, ext. 1420
Email[email protected]
Job PlacementContact LAEC for details
Online Classes?No
Free Classes?No

Los Angeles Job Corps

The Los Angeles Job Corps offers a comprehensive Certified Nurse Assistant training program, designed for individuals passionate about the medical field. This hands-on program covers patient care tasks, vital signs, and meal service, offering practical experience for employment in healthcare settings like hospitals, senior living facilities, and clinics.

Completing the CNA program opens doors to further healthcare career opportunities, including advanced training as a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) or Registered Nurse (RN). Throughout the program, you’ll earn nationally recognized credentials, including a CNA license and vital certifications.

To enroll, you must meet prerequisites, including high school completion, test success, and compliance with state-specific requirements, with dedicated staff at the Los Angeles Job Corps Center ready to assist. This program offers a rewarding path to the healthcare field, where you can positively impact lives.

Learn more: Los Angeles Job Corps

Program InformationDetails
Program DurationContact Job Corps
Class SchedulesContact Job Corps
PrerequisitesHigh school diploma or equivalent, completion of introductory and career preparation courses, passing scores on tests, academic requirements, state-specific requirements (e.g., background check)
Certification EligibilityCNA license, BLS for Healthcare Providers, Heartsaver® Bloodborne Pathogens certifications
LocationLos Angeles Job Corps Center, 1020 S Olive St, Los Angeles, CA 90015
Phone800-733-JOBS (800-733-5627), 877-889-5627 TTY
Job PlacementNo
Online Classes?No
Free Classes?Yes

Santa Monica College

Santa Monica College provides tuition-free noncredit programs in Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA) and Home Health Aide (HHA) Pre-Certification, catering to aspiring healthcare providers. The CNA Pre-Certification program, spanning 180 hours, equips students with essential skills for entry-level nurse assistant roles, while the HHA Pre-Certification program, consisting of 54 hours, prepares individuals for home health aide careers.

These programs prioritize affordability, with no tuition fees and most supplies available for loan; however, students may encounter out-of-pocket expenses for background checks, drug screenings, and CPR certification. Admission requirements include background checks, drug screenings, a recent TB test, CPR/BLS certification, COVID-19 vaccination, and flu vaccination during flu season.

Learn more: Santa Monica College

Program InformationDetails
Program DurationLess than 2 months
Class SchedulesHealth 985, Bundy, M/T 7am – 3pm
Health 986, Lab, W/Th/F 7am – 2pm
PrerequisitesYes (Background check, drug screening, TB test, CPR/BLS certification, COVID-19 vaccine, flu vaccine during flu season)
Certification EligibilityYes (CNA and HHA certifications)
LocationSanta Monica College, California
Email[email protected]
WebsiteSanta Monica College
Job PlacementNo
Online Classes?No
Free Classes?Yes (Tuition-free)

Cheap vs. Free CNA Training

If you don’t qualify for free CNA classes at your desired program, or it just isn’t a good fit for you in general, there are still several other cheaper CNA courses in Los Angeles that provide a quality experience that you can explore.

Pros and Cons of Free CNA Programs

As with most things that won’t cost you a dime, you’ll likely have some tradeoffs if you sign up for a free CNA program in Los Angeles. Let’s run through some of the common pros and cons students will experience.

Pros of Free CNA Programs

One of the significant advantages inherent in free CNA programs lies in their cost-effectiveness. The absence of tuition fees renders these programs accessible to individuals who may be concerned about the financial burden of pursuing education. This affordability makes it a viable choice for a broader demographic.

Free CNA programs alleviate the concern of accumulating student loan debt. Graduates of these programs are not encumbered by financial obligations stemming from tuition expenses. This financial liberation can be particularly appealing to those who seek to avoid post-education financial burdens.

Another noteworthy benefit is the expeditious nature of CNA training. Free programs offer a relatively quick pathway to entry into the healthcare sector. This expediency enables individuals to commence healthcare employment and accrue valuable professional experience promptly. Additionally, the fundamental nursing skills acquired during CNA training can serve as a strong foundational base for individuals considering further advancement within the healthcare field, such as pursuing licensure as a practical nurse (LPN) or a registered nurse (RN).

Cons of Free CNA Programs

There are certain drawbacks associated with free CNA programs. Accessibility to these programs can be limited, contingent on geographical location. High demand coupled with limited slots often results in competitive admission processes and restricted enrollment opportunities.

Free CNA programs may entail stringent admission prerequisites. These prerequisites can encompass background checks, mandatory drug testing, and, in some instances, specific educational prerequisites. As such, gaining admission may pose challenges for certain applicants.

It is also important to acknowledge that free CNA programs tend to have abbreviated durations and intensive structures in comparison to their paid counterparts. This brevity may be unsuitable for individuals who prefer a more comprehensive and extended training experience.

The quality of instruction in free CNA programs can vary quite a bit. While some programs maintain rigorous standards, others may not offer the same level of comprehensive training and essential resources typically provided by accredited, paid programs. Consequently, the quality of education and preparedness of graduates may be inconsistent.

Certain free CNA programs, especially those sponsored by healthcare institutions, may necessitate that program graduates commit to a specified period of employment with the sponsoring entity. This employment obligation could restrict job flexibility and freedom of choice for graduates seeking broader employment options.

Ultimately, the decision to pursue a free CNA program versus a paid one should be made after a thorough evaluation of the associated pros and cons. Individuals should ensure that their chosen program aligns with their specific educational and career objectives, considering factors such as program availability, admission requirements, program duration, and employment obligations, as well as their individual circumstances and preferences.