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Nursing class offered for high school students

Woodstock School District 200 offers a one-semester Basic Nursing Assistant (BNA) class to high school juniors and seniors. This program offers a strong foundation for any medical field for high-achieving students and lifelong employment for students not planning to pursue education after high school.

Connie Happ, district certified school nurse and BNA instructor, said by passing a state exam, students can gain employment as a certified nursing assistant (CNA) and continue their education if desired.

“What is neat for me is to see students acquire skills as a Certified Nursing Assistant. Not everyone is going right into college; some can’t financially, some are not ready for it, but now they have a skill and can obtain a job,” Happ said.

Amanda Harmer, District 200’s career facilitator, said the Basic Nursing Assistant class provides an academic response to the job demand in health care. Students receive nine college credits from McHenry County College through a dual credit partnership. The program is in its fourth semester, and 44 students have completed the class. The class meets five days a week from 7 to 8:15 a.m. at Woodstock High School. Students attend 56 clinical hours at Valley Hi Nursing Home.

• • •

The Woodstock Chamber of Commerce’s 68th annual dinner Feb. 21 included an assertion that “the Chamber has come a long way,” and the first priority was to establish financial stability as reported by President Todd Kinker in summary of the year’s activities.

Kinker said the board cut costs and renegotiated vendor contracts. A big step forward was to strengthen board leadership and name Shari Gray executive director.

“We have strengthened our board of directors by adding people with different skills to obtain representation from Woodstock’s variety of retail, manufacturing, service and not-for-profits sectors,” Kinker said.

Congratulations to Steve Finzel, recipient of the 2013 Harold Buschkopf Community Service Award. Finzel is president of the board of directors at Family Alliance. He has served on the McHenry County Building Commission as treasurer. Finzel has helped raise funds for the American Cancer Society Relay for Life events and is involved in Christmas Clearing House and Pickle Palooza. He served as a member of the Jaycees earlier in his career.

He was instrumental in forming a group called Human Services Advocates. Finzel serves as chair, and he leads its advocacy efforts to keep the economic plight of human service entities serving our area at the forefront of the minds of our local state legislators.

As spokesman for Human Services Advocates, Finzel has appeared to state legislators and the McHenry County Board and has participated in or helped to arrange communications with Springfield on behalf of all human service agencies in the county.

• Don Peasley has been editor, columnist and historian in McHenry County since 1947. He began his association with Shaw Publications in 1950. 815-338-1533.

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