Indian River State College Nursing Assistant (C.N.A.) Program Headquarters Moves to Blackburn Educational Building in Fort Pierce - Indian River State College
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Indian River State College Nursing Assistant (C.N.A.) Program Headquarters Moves to Blackburn Educational Building in Fort Pierce

Indian River State College Nursing Assistant (C.N.A.) Program Headquarters Moves to Blackburn Educational Building in Fort Pierce

September 7, 2022 Suzanne Seldes

FORT PIERCE, FL—Indian River State College has moved its Nursing Assistant (C.N.A.) program headquarters to the Blackburn Educational Building in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Fort Pierce. The decision is attributed chiefly to the success of the Lincoln Park Career Pathways Initiative (LPCPI), housed at Blackburn. LPCPI offers eligible residents of the Lincoln Park community eight-week, tuition-free industry certification programs—C.N.A. among them—in growing and expanding careers in healthcare, logistics and manufacturing.

In response to the success of the Lincoln Park Career Pathways Initiative (LPCPI), housed at Blackburn Educational Building in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Fort Pierce, IRSC has moved its Nursing Assistant (C.N.A.) program headquarters to the facility.

“The (C.N.A.) program has changed many lives in this community,” says Dr. Heather Belmont, IRSC Provost, Vice President for Academic Affairs and CAO. “It’s a difference-maker, and our students are getting better jobs. For those seeking upward mobility for themselves and their families, training to become a C.N.A. is the first rung on the ladder toward a great-paying career in healthcare.”

The new headquarters also functions as the official training site for the program in St. Lucie County. IRSC will continue to offer C.N.A. programs at branch campuses to serve students in Indian River, Okeechobee and Martin counties.

In December 2021, in response to the statewide nursing shortage, IRSC announced that it would double the size of its Nursing program. The Nursing Assistant and Home Health Aide programs have already moved to the Blackburn Educational Building. The Practical Nursing, Associate Degree in Nursing (R.N.) and the Registered Nurse (R.N.) to B.S.N. programs will move to expanded facilities on the IRSC Pruitt Campus in Port St. Lucie by spring 2023.

“I’m incredibly excited about this move,” shares Adriene Jefferson, Dean of the IRSC Northwest Center. “The Northwest Center has such a great impact on our community, and it is time to dedicate an IRSC program to run exclusively out of this location. Making the Blackburn Educational Building the headquarters for the Nursing Assistant and Home Health Aide programs makes it even easier for our community members to begin a rewarding career in the in-demand healthcare field.”

Fort Pierce Commissioner Curtis Johnson, Jr. concurs. “Investment in the historic Lincoln Park community of Fort Pierce is very important for the continued uplift of this resilient community. IRSC’s move to place the Nursing Assistant program headquarters in the heart of the historic Lincoln Park community means affordable, career-changing educational opportunities that provide economic and career success are right here. The facilities are here; the instructors are here; the support system is here. Pathways for residents seeking a career in healthcare now start here in Lincoln Park.”

Outcomes for students graduating from the IRSC Nursing Assistant program are outstanding. One hundred percent of those graduating from the program in 2021 were working in either a full or part-time position nine months after graduation.

IRSC offers day and evening Nursing Assistant classes and is now accepting applications for students who want to begin the programs in August. Financial assistance for eligible students may be available through the LPCPI or scholarship programs, including those offered through the IRSC Foundation. Interested students are encouraged to attend a free, online IRSC Nursing Information Session on September 15 or October 20.

To learn more at irsc.edu or send an email to IRSCCNAinfo@irsc.edu.

About the Blackburn Educational Building
The Blackburn Educational Building is an IRSC facility that helps support the revitalization of Fort Pierce. The Blackburn serves as the learning hub of the R. “Duke” Nelson Human Development & Resources Center, located at 3002 Avenue D. It is a community resource that provides citizens with training for rewarding careers, good pay, and bright futures.

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