DETROIT – Henry Ford Health System has created a program aimed at encouraging non-clinical staff to pursue careers in medicine through in-house training to be become a nurse assistant. Known as Grow Your Own, the program is led by Henry Ford’s nursing leaders and educators. It offers current employees in non-clinical roles, such as housekeepers and valet drivers, an opportunity to learn the necessary skills and begin work as a nurse assistant upon completion.
Now in its second year, the Grow Your Own program is a six-week course with both classroom and clinical training components. Participants must pass both written and clinical skill exams before beginning their new role as a nurse assistant. Under the direction of a registered nurse, nurse assistants are responsible for performing specific patient care duties to meet the safety and comfort needs of patients, as well as providing input to assist the registered nurse in planning and implementing patient care.
Dekeisha Campbell, who began her career at Henry Ford as a housekeeper three years ago, graduated from the first class of Grow Your Own participants at the end of 2017. Now one year into her new role as a nurse assistant, Campbell says she was thankful to be part of the program and is glad she pursued the opportunity.
“The Grow Your Own program was very informative and prepared me to transfer into my new role as a nurse assistant,” Campbell said. “My favorite part of being a nurse assistant is having the opportunity to provide care for the patients. There’s also a lot of room to grow professionally, and I’m excited about that.”
In addition to providing necessary skills and guaranteed job placement upon graduation, Grow Your Own offers several more unique benefits.
“Grow Your Own allows employees to obtain their nurse assistant education and start their career without having to miss work, balance school and work, or pay for the program,” said Mary Kravutske, Ph.D., R.N., Henry Ford Nursing Development and Research Administrator. “The program is approximately 36-40 hours per week and offers fulltime benefits and compensation.”
To learn more about nursing education and careers at Henry Ford Health System, visit henryford.com/hcp/nursing-careers/education.
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