Nursing schools across the country, from the University of Syracuse to University of Southern California, are extremely competitive. Depending on the school, some may only accept a few dozen into the nursing program per semester when hundreds, despite receiving hundreds, if not thousands of applications. With the competitive nature of gaining admittance into the nursing program of a chosen school, applicants need to do whatever they can to set themselves apart.

With that said, do current individuals who work as a certified nursing assistant improve a person’s chances? Realistically it comes down to each individual school. No two schools have the exact same acceptance and admission policy, so it is extremely important to look into what a school considers when weighing applicants.

For example, some schools will look at overall GPA, while others will only consider the GPA of science classes and those related to the field. There are schools that look at entrance exam scores and there are some programs that want students who speak a second language. Now, there are schools that take previous healthcare experience into consideration when determining who can enter into a program over who is not accepted just yet.

Holding a CNA certification doesn’t hurt by any means. However, if students are going after a CNA prior to applying for nursing school simply because they believe it will push admission into their favor, it is best to first investigate the desired schools and look into what the school’s nursing program wants from applicants. This is where an open dialog with a college counselor is desirable. They can provide additional information into what the particular program wants to see on an applicant’s resume.

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