Healthcare industry named fastest growing career sector

September 7, 2017 | San Diego Community College District

Fall semester at San Diego Continuing Education started this week and healthcare career training is at its highest level of enrollment. 

The healthcare industry is growing faster than ever due to recent changes in the United States’ healthcare system. With this growth comes the demand for higher education and skilled workers.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Employment of healthcare occupations is projected to grow 19 percent by 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations, adding about 2.3 million new jobs.”

SDCE offers free short-term healthcare career training to San Diego county residents 18+. While registered nursing programs can take minimally two to four years to complete, SDCE’s Certified Nursing Assistant program can be generally completed in 260 hours or sixteen weeks.

Additional certifications include Personal Care Assistant/Caregiver and Home Health Aide.

According to the State of California Employment Development Department, “The median wage in 2017 for Nursing Assistants in California is $31,102 annually or $14.96 hourly.”

“No one in my family has a high school diploma. This is a big deal for me. I want to show my daughter even if you have a big setback if you really fight for it you can do it,” said Susana, SDCE student. Many students like Susana transition regularly from SDCE’s Cesar E. Chavez Campus to City College to begin nursing classes.

While the new school year is underway, SDCE’s mission remains unchanged, to provide accessible and equitable education to every adult in San Diego County including refugees and immigrants. The institution welcomed a new vital partnership this fall with the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency and that provides resources beyond the classroom to ensure student achievement. A second new initiative with the San Diego Workforce Partnership (SDWP) is providing paid job internships, career development coaching, and free educational software to SDCE students through a new initiative called TECH/HIRE San Diego.

“We are teaching students to envision earning beyond minimum or low wages, said Carlos O. Turner Cortez, Ph.D., SDCE President. “We are moving full force. We encourage SDCE students to earn income while they are learning and providing paid internships is a successful model.”

SDWP provides workforce guidance to SDCE students helping them to identify available careers and how to acquire the skills and experience needed to achieve their long-term goals.

Earlier this year SDCE also announced a five-year pilot partnership with  County Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) — giving SDCE’s nearly 44,000 annually enrolled students access to a broad range of health and social services including CalFresh, CalWORKs and Medi-Cal on campus.

Staff from HHSA’s Central Region are present at three SDCE campuses, including in Barrio Logan at the Cesar E. Chavez Campus, SDCE’s Campus of Excellence for Healthcare Careers.

Last year SDCE awarded nearly 10,000 diplomas and certificates of completion, an increase of 66% from the previous year.

Fall semester classes and free certificate programs at SDCE are currently enrolling. For more information visit, SDCE.EDU.

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