From cashier to Certified Nursing Assistant: Oceania Robinson pursues her passion

When Oceania Robinson arrived for orientation at Comprehensive Training Systems (CTS) she was a young, unemployed, single mother, struggling to provide for her son with the help of public assistance. She had recently relocated to San Diego from Texas, after losing her job, and was hoping to provide a better life for her family.

Before enrolling in Bridge to Employment, a program that trains Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) recipients and other low-income individuals in healthcare occupations, Oceania worked as a cashier and a phone operator, but was frustrated with the low wages and inconsistent hours.

Oceania displayed a passion for taking care of others and a calm attitude that would take her far in the healthcare field. For most, a lack of education and career planning skills can be an insurmountable barrier, but she was determined to do something for herself and her family.  Oceania enrolled in the Bridge to Employment program in July 2012 with the ultimate goal of becoming a Registered Nurse. After researching the career path, she decided that her first step was to become a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA).

Oceania’s training was completed in roughly one month and after passing the state exam, she officially became a Certified Nurse Assistant. Next she dedicated herself to finding a job; by maintaining an optimistic attitude and a refusal to make excuses, she was hired by Somerset Specialty Care Center as a CNA in January. Several months later Oceania continues to do well and is currently planning to pursue her goal of becoming a Registered Nurse. Congratulations, Oceania!

Interested in a healthcare career? Call to see if you are eligible:

Central San Diego:  Comprehensive Training Systems, (619) 582-9133

North County:  North County Lifeline, (760) 762-4900

South County:  MAAC (619) 426-3595

East County:  International Rescue Committee, (619) 641-7510      

Health Profession Opportunity Grant

Department of Health & Human Services USA

This document was supported by Grant 90FX0022 from the Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS).  Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of HHS.
An evaluation funded by the federal government is being conducted to determine how Bridge to Employment helps people increase their skills and find jobs.  There will be more applicants than spaces available in this program.  Individuals who are eligible for the program and agree to participate in the study will be selected into the program based on a lottery.