Hi, I am a sophomore year nursing student at William Paterson college. I want to gain experience while making money before I graduate. I was thinking about taking some classes to be certified as a PCA but I dont really know how to go about it. Also, I want to work while I'm at school but also while I'm on break at home (an hour from school) so would I be able to transfer between hospitals? Also how beneficial would this be to me in terms of getting a nursing job at the same hospital I have worked as a PCA at. Thank you in advance!
Check with your school. In many places, you can apply to be a CNA after completion of your first year or semester of nursing classes. You may already qualify without taking any additional courses. The job description of a PCA, as well as whether a certification is required, varies depending on the facility. In most cases, having your CNA certification will be sufficient.
Health care experience will benefit you in several ways. 1. It teaches you basic assessment and practical skills, time management, prioritization, and how to interact with patients, families, and co-workers. These are essential for success as a nurse, and proficiency in these areas will help you transition to an RN position more easily. 2. It shows future employers that you have proven yourself to be a capable employee. 3. It allows you to build relationships with staff nurses and management who may be willing to hire you as an RN or can give you letters of recommendation to other facilities. 4. Hospitals often like to promote from within, as they already know your character and reliability. It also saves them money because they don't have to put a new employee through the general hospital orientation, physical, background check, etc.