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Celebrating 3,000 certified nursing assistants trained by the Institute

June 16, 2023 | At the International Institute of Minnesota, we’re celebrating a remarkable milestone: the certification of our 3,000th nursing assistant trained by the Institute.

We are thrilled to mark this achievement and reflect on the positive impact our Nursing Assistant Training program has on both New Americans and our community.

“Through our commitment to providing high-quality and professional nursing assistant training to New Americans, we are not only addressing the caregiver crisis in Minnesota but also empowering individuals with talent, potential and ambition to pursue rewarding careers in healthcare,” said Jane Graupman, Executive Director at the Institute. “We thank our team for providing top-notch training that leads to certification, employment and a meaningful career that benefits our community.”

Filling Critical Labor Gaps

The caregiver crisis has presented significant challenges in the nation’s healthcare industry, including in Minnesota. Recognizing the need for skilled professionals, the Institute launched its Nursing Assistant Training 33 years ago. Since then, we have played a vital role in filling critical labor gaps by training immigrants and refugees as certified nursing assistants (CNAs).

Our program equips individuals with essential skills and knowledge in patient care so they can begin healthcare careers. The Institute’s employment navigators also provide job search assistance for our certified graduates and to ensure success between our employer partners and Institute-trained CNAs.

“I have been lucky enough to be a part of this program for 15 years,” said Julie Garner-Pringle, the Institute’s Nursing Assistant Training Program Manager. “It has been such an honor to see so many incredible people be successful.”

New Americans: A Wealth of Talent and Potential

New Americans arrive in Minnesota with a wealth of talent, potential and ambition. They bring diverse cultural perspectives, multilingual abilities and a deep dedication to their work. By recognizing and leveraging the unique talents of New Americans, we have developed a model that aligns their skills with the needs of local employers, while fostering diversity, inclusivity and excellence in the healthcare industry.

Collaboration with Employer Partners

Our success would not be possible without collaboration with employer partners. We work closely with local healthcare facilities, clinics and hospitals to help meet the demands of the industry. We’re proud that our Nursing Assistant Training exceeds state standards, while aligning with the evolving needs of healthcare employers

The Institute is dedicated to creating a workforce that is skilled, competent and ready to contribute to the well-being of patients.

“Some students are restarting long established health care careers. Some students are starting their first career. Some have been in Minnesota for a long time, and some a short time. All are going to be valuable, skilled employees,” Garner-Pringle said.

Looking Ahead

Reaching the milestone of certifying our 3,000th trained nursing assistant is a testament to the dedication and commitment of the International Institute of Minnesota. We take immense pride in being part of the solution to the caregiver crisis in our state, while empowering New Americans to build the lives of their dreams and achieve self-sufficiency.

We look forward to training and supporting many more CNAs in the future, while making a positive impact on the community.

Since 1919, the International Institute of Minnesota has delivered critical services and resources to help New Americans transition to their new lives in Minnesota. From language learning and job training to immigration and refugee services, the Institute offers New Americans a pathway for a strong start to a new life. Once stability is achieved, we’re there for next steps, too: from college preparation and career advancement to citizenship support and financial coaching toward home ownership.