The demand for health care assistants in the West Kootenay-Boundary is growing and Selkirk College is taking action to help fill the gaps by providing an additional cohort of its health care assistant program out of Kaslo.

Health care assistant program coming to Kaslo

One of Selkirk College’s most popular programs is extending its reach into smaller West Kootenay communities.

One of Selkirk College’s most popular programs is extending its reach into smaller West Kootenay communities in an effort to help fill in-demand jobs in regional health care.

The health care assistant program puts graduates on the frontlines of health care assisting clients with personal care, nutrition and mobility.

Based out of the Selkirk College Trail campus, the program has an employment rate for students of more than 95 per cent. Starting in January, an additional cohort will be offered out of the college’s Kaslo Learning Centre.

“We have been hearing from health care providers in the north end of our region that this program is sought after by residents of Kaslo, New Denver and Nakusp,” says Rhys Andrews, dean of instruction for Selkirk College’s health and human Services. “In order to provide better access to those who desire to enter the sector, we are offering this special cohort.”

The health care assistant program is designed to provide students with opportunities to develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to function effectively as frontline care providers and to be a respected member of the health care team in both community and facility settings.

Under the direction and supervision of a health professional, graduates provide person-centred care aimed at promoting and maintaining the physical, emotional, cognitive and social well-being of clients/residents.

In the 26-week program, Selkirk College offers the provincial curriculum in a blend of face-to-face and online delivery of theory content. The certificate program is comprised of 16 weeks of theory and 10 weeks of practical experience.

“This program meets local needs with on-time training,” says Andrews. “The program also opens the door to other pathways for further education in health sciences and to local and regional employment opportunities.”

Over the last few years, students from all corners of the region have taken the program. With an increased demand for graduates from health care providers in the north end of the Selkirk College region, offering an extra cohort of the program will help fill a gap in both public and private facilities.

“Bringing this program to the Kaslo region will provide more access to those who are simply not able to travel great distances to attend class,” says Dawn Lang, Selkirk College’s community education and workplace training coordinator in Kaslo. “This is a tremendous opportunity for the individuals in our region to embark on career that has great potential.”

The Kaslo-based health care assistant program cohort will run from Jan. 4 to June 30, 2016. There are opportunities for academic upgrading to meet the requirements for entry and potential training subsidies for Columbia Basin residents.

Find out more about the health care assistant program at


Just Posted

Selkirk College nursing students visit Honduran migrants

Students were overwhelmed by migrants’ hope in the face of poverty and displacement

Feds, B.C. to expand Darkwoods Conservation area

New funding allows the national land trust to add some 7,900 hectares to the Darkwoods Conservation Area

Good fencing makes good neighbours— especially when your neighbours are bears

Workshop in Pass Creek this weekend to promote benefits of proper protection for livestock

Laird Creek residents still hoping for independent report on logging road

Logging company wants to reopen road that residents believe caused slide in 2011

Kootenay region posts 10-per-cent return rate on electoral reform ballots

As of Nov. 13, only 5.3 per cent of ballots had been returned province-wide

Josie Hotel will be ready on opening day, says management

West Kootenay’s first ski-in, ski-out boutique hotel to open this month

Children’s strawberry-flavoured medicines recalled due to faulty safety cap

Three different acetaminophen syrups part of nationwide recall

Around the BCHL: Junior A cities to host World Junior tuneup games

Around the BCHL is a look at what’s happening in the league and around the junior A world.

International students hit hard by B.C. tuition fee hikes

Campaign seeks regulatory controls be imposed on post-secondary institutions

Trudeau pushes for more Saudi accountability in Khashoggi killing

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Canada is still seeking clear answers from Saudi Arabia about what happened to Jamal Khashoggi

School bullying video shows how people with disabilities are devalued: advocates

Brett Corbett, who has cerebral palsy, is seen in a video being stepped while lying in water

Former Fernie councillor co-launches cannabis company

“Our mission, our goal - it’s about education. It’s about de-stigmatizing” - Dennis Schafer

CFL will use extra on-field official to watch for illegal blows to quarterback

If the extra official sees an illegal blow that has not already been flagged, they will advise the head referee, who can then assess a penalty for roughing the passer

Older B.C. drivers subsidizing younger ones, study finds

ICBC protects higher-risk drivers, pays for testing costs

Most Read