Posted on Wednesday, March 8, 2017


Workforce WednesdayLast week’s Workforce Wednesday blog post Middle College – Charting a Course for a Promising Future introduced us to the important work happening to help adults complete their GED and pursue a college education. This week we caught up with Jammie Robinson and Jeffrey Bushnell, both currently enrolled in Reynolds Community College’s Middle College Certified Nurse Aide (CNA) program, to get their thoughts on how the program is changing their lives for the better.

Robinson was the primary caretaker for her grandmother and mother when they battled cancer and that made finishing high school a bit of a challenge. In 2015, her neighbor, Jackie, asked what she wanted to do with life. Her response was nursing. Jackie gave her the number to Reynolds Community College, and soon Robinson was enrolled in the Middle College program.

During the interview process Robinson was asked what she planned to do after CNA, and she responded, “I don’t plan to stop. I want to be a pediatric RN.” Robinson will graduate on May 14 with her CNA, and her resolve remains strong.


“The great thing about being a CNA is it is a stepping stone to whatever you want to do. CNA before RN means you’ll be ahead of everyone in your nursing class.”

Jeffrey Bushnell, a classmate of Robinson’s, was searching for his path in life when his counselor showed him the Middle College application. Bushnell did not have high hopes but was excited when he was accepted to the CNA program.

“The program has changed my life, and I feel like I am going somewhere. It gave me the courage and everything I needed to move forward. The instructors are awesome and teach you the way you personally learn best.” 

Bushnell previously worked as a car wash attendant and like Robinson, will graduate in May with plans to work at a hospital to help pay for his continuing education in an RN program.

Reynolds Community College’s Middle College program proudly partners with Region 15 Adult Education to offer the Certified Nurse Aide Middle College program.'

Amanda Christopher

Amanda Christopher is a graduate of Hollins University and Virginia Commonwealth University. A native of the DC metro area, Amanda worked in public relations for the American Red Cross before joining the Virginia Community College System as the Workforce Communications Coordinator.

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