Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)

The Kodiak College CNA course is taught in a supportive, professional university environment.  Classroom learning is then developed through practical skill building within community health care facilities.

Nursing students in a classroom


Students who successfully complete the CNA program will gain the following knowledge and skills:

  • Introduction to healthcare including the patient bill of rights, legal issues, and ethical standards
  • Body structure and function - vital signs, care of surgical patient, vision & hearing problems, basic emergency care
  • Personal care - the patient unit and bed making, bed baths, oral care, dressing and undressing with IV, skin care, range of motion, turning and positioning
  • Lifespan growth & development, confusion & dementia, care of elderly, death & dying, grief & loss
  • Medical terminology, medical abbreviations, CNA role in healthcare,
  • Body mechanics - transfers & ambulation, safety/restraints, activity therapy, rehabilitation, preventing infection, comfort, rest, and sleep, sexuality, nutrition
  • Maslow’s hierarchy of needs

Students interested in becoming a CNA need to apply for the program each fall semester.  Pick up an application outside Student Services at Kodiak College or email koc_servicesworker@kodiak.alaska.edu if you would like a copy sent to you.  If you have questions about the CNA program, please contact the Chair of Health Sciences, Dr. Suzanne Buie at (865) 456-0789 or sbuie@alaska.edu . 

A minimum of 140 hours are required for course completion. The required hours are divided as followed:  80 hours of supervised clinical experience and 60 hours of classroom instruction.

Students look over details

 The 80 hours of clinical experience will be a combination of weekdays, weekends and some additional evenings.  A completed curriculum and breakdown of hours will be available to students once registration for the CNA course has been approved. Students accepted into the CNA program will take a 7 credit course called HCA A105 Certified Nurse Aid which is divided into lecture and clinical experience.

The Kodiak College CNA program prepares the student to assist patients with health care needs under the supervision of Registered Nurses or Licensed Practical Nurse in various health care settings. 

stethoscope on patient

Earning Potential

In Alaska, CNAs earn an average hourly wage of $18.24, and have an average annual salary of $37,940.

Job Outlook

According to Alaska Economic Trends (October 2012) Health care is projected to lead job growth in the state of Alaska with a projected growth of 31 percent.

There are currently many jobs for CNAs in Alaska – approximately 80 openings a year – and this occupation is expected to continue to grow.


A Certified Nursing Assistant has the skills to help patients with everyday needs such as bathing, eating and changing dressings.

**Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development