Sweet Summertime! Students complete MPTC nursing assistant boot camp

Two students from CNA boot camp pose for picture with instructor

Eight more students recently successfully completed Moraine Park Technical College’s Nursing Assistant (CNA) boot camp–a rigorous three-week, 120 hour, 3 credit, learning experience. Students spent their clinical hours training at Fond du Lac Lutheran Home. Pictured from this group above are (left to right) Cami Stoll, Hannah Stoll and MPTC CNA Instructor Tina Cordell.

Funded by the U.S. Department of Labor Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College Career Training (TAACCCT) ACT for Healthcare Grant program, the CNA boot camps condense a typical 8- or 16-week, three-credit Nursing Assistant course into an accelerated format. Training provides theory, laboratory experience and clinical learning that teaches students the skills to perform duties such as taking vital signs, bathing, dressing, feeding, making beds, and other direct resident care. The grant-funded CNA boot camps began in the summer of 2015 and continue through the final training cohort in August, 2017. Approximately 200 students are expected to complete the camps over the three-year grant, qualifying them to take the Pearson Vue Wisconsin Nurse Aide Certification Exam.

CNA training is required for students interested in pursuing many healthcare related fields.  Some CNAs go straight into the workforce. Others continue their studies toward an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. Many students may work as a CNA for great experience and a paycheck while continuing their studies.

All 16 Wisconsin Technical Colleges, including Moraine Park, are three-year grant recipients, with each institution developing its own supplemental healthcare programs under the Act for Healthcare consortium project. Dislocated workers and veterans receive priority placement for grant funding.  Moraine Park already offers traditional CNA classes at all three campuses throughout the academic year.

CNA training is in high demand, with most classes filled to capacity. Boot camp students complete the theory portion of the course online on their own time and master hands-on skills for 120 hours of training in the classroom and clinical settings.  A grade of C or better and 100 percent attendance are required for successful completion. Boot camp sizes are capped at 10 students per instructor, with some cohorts stacked with 20 students and two instructors.  CNA employees are in extremely high demand with over 1,000 positions currently listed across the state.  More CNA instructors are needed to meet the growing demand!

Hannah Stoll graduated from the Fond du Lac CNA cohort, along with her mom Cami Stoll.  Hannah shared, ” I had recently graduated from Markesan High school and will continue my education at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. I am still undecided as to what major I am considering; Special Education or Nursing. My older sister, who is sixteen months older than me, is currently enrolled at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh as she will be studying for Nursing. She became a CNA during her junior year at high School while my mom had been working as a CBRF (community based residential facility). As for myself, I have always wanted to help people, so I decided I should start caring and helping people as a certified nursing assistant.”

“My first thoughts while enrolling myself in the CNA boot camp offered by Moraine Park was an abundant amount of emotions. I was initially nervous to be apart of any CNA class but an accelerated boot camp? I couldn’t imagine myself getting through it! However, I decided to take the class one day at a time. I met some really awesome people, most I now consider friends. Without the help of my mom by my side, Tina Cordell our instructor, and the other students encouragement, I don’t know how I would have made it though this class!  I have a huge weight off of my shoulders now that I passed the accelerated CNA course. I’ll always have the pressure of providing the best care for patients/residents but that should be expected. Now that I know that I’m capable of caring and helping someone I can take some of that stress away. As for now, I am currently looking to acquire a job as a preCNA before I take my state test.”

“My advice for others considering CNA training is to not doubt yourself and to be confident. You learn so much and it’s surprising how much you can learn in such a short time. With all that knowledge, you become capable of caring for someone who cannot care for themselves and they know if you feel confident by the way you care for them.  With my mom’s encouragement, I was able to pass the accelerated CNA course offered by Moraine Park!”



From left to right, Dr. Fred Rice – Dean of Technology and Trades, Micah Felch, Chris Frederick – Health Science Instructional Aide, Tina Schneider, Carissa Schill, Anne Lemke – Grant Manager, Brianna Hettenhaus, Kristen Finnel – Dean of Health, Megan Andes, Cami Stoll, Tina Cordell – CNA Instructor, Heddy Pahnke – Nursing Administrative Assistant, Hunter Waller, Hannah Stoll, Mike Miller – MPTC Board Chair, Kim Spartz – Administrative Assistant for Dean of Health.

Written by Anne Lemke
Student Community Impact Coordinator