PARIS – Sixteen new CNAs are in the work force in the Oxford Hills area, due to the cooperation of Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School Adult Education, Stephens Memorial Hospital, and Maine Veterans’ Home.

The students have worked in the classroom and in clinical settings to complete the requirements to be certified under the state board of nursing as certified nurses aides. The course started in January and finished this month.

They completed 92 hours of classroom time (three days a week for three hours a day), and 88 hours of clinical rotations. The clinical rotations were for six hours a day; seven days at Stephens Memorial Hospital and seven days at Maine Veterans’ Home in South Paris. They have been under the supervision of three registered nurses who share the responsibilities as instructors.

The graduation ceremony took place on May 18 in the multi-purpose room at the Maine Veterans’ Home. A welcome address was given by Judy Green, director of Adult Education. Each of the three instructors, Marcia Campbell, RN, Henry Raymond, RNC, and Lee Berry, RN, spoke of the students’ determination to learn all they could in each clinical setting, and to provide outstanding care.

Each graduate, dressed in new white uniforms, was presented a CNA pin, a pink rose, and a guardian angel pin to wear as they go out into the workplace.

“This is a wonderful accomplishment for these individuals. There are frequently shortages in staffing in this caring profession, and these graduates will help to provide the best of care wherever they decide to work,” said Matthew Lessard, administrator of the Maine Veterans’ Home-South Paris.

Lessard said he is not only happy to have new graduates in the area, but to have two employees among the graduates.

“This was an undertaking that both of these employees wanted to do to further enhance the options for their employment here. It has been a big commitment for both of them, who continued to work their regular hours at MVH, and juggle the responsibilities of their families,” stated Lessard.

The ceremony was concluded and the graduates, families, friends and residents attended a potluck buffet. More than 100 guests were present for the festivities.

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